The year is moving quickly and with American Thanksgiving just around the corner, we want to give thanks to our many supporters who have made our work possible. On Saturday, we had our 3rd Annual Global Evening, celebrating our accomplishments and raising funds for our global projects. The event raised over $11,000. We hope to build a library at the Ambassadors Learning Center in Kamatanda as well as contribute to projects in Zimbabwe and Botswana.
Last week, the Ambassadors paid for Francis to travel to Harare with his father to get his hearing tested. The results showed he is completely deaf in one ear and 70% deaf in the other. We raised enough for hearing aids for him this weekend so sound can be amplified, but will be unable to provide the surgery the doctors recommended as it is $24,000. Still, his father is grateful for anything we can give.
We also raised enough for Eileen to stay in boarding school one more year. Eileen’s father (pictured above left) was a good friend to Ambassadors and was tragically killed when walking home from school last year. The Ambassadors paid for Eileen’s education that year which will end in January. We now have enough funds for her to attend another year. Maria Fomina, our President asked for friends to support Eileen’s education instead of giving birthday presents this year. She has raised over $800 so far.
In October, we paid for seed and a plow and oxen so that the Kamatanda school could replant maize as part of the food program we established last year. Each child at the Ambassadors Learning Center receives a bowl of corn and rice each day. Since some walk up to 10 km to reach our school, this nutrition will get the ready to learn.
We paid the balance left on the teacher training we funded last year with the generous support of the Elementary School. Special thanks to Mr. Rick Olson and his ES StuCo team who were instrumental in this. One teacher wrote to tell us that she is one of 7 children with HIV. Her parents are both sick with the disease and her mother is also blind. They could never afford to pay for her education, so she is very grateful that we are giving her what her parents wish they could. We paid for the first year of teacher training for 6 teachers at a cost of $1500 per person. They still have one more year to complete the program, so we are hoping we can raise the funds for this. All of our teachers are volunteers, and with the exception of the teacher I just mentioned, they are orphans. Parents donate money for soap and food, but they never get more than $15 a month.
We have also paid for an Auto Mechanics shop for YCTC, a training program that helps reduce aids by giving free training to aids orphans and former prostitutes so they can learn a skill and earn a living. We provided 2 tool kits for students to share and learn with. There is a volunteer house at YCTC where people donate a year to serving others, but it did not have any facilities, so we built a restroom attachment. Hopefully, this will make life more comfortable and sanitary for volunteers.
In everything we do, we try to focus on the needs of the communities we serve. Our trip in March will be focused on service and making a difference. We are planning an Awareness Campaign for Pandamatenga so the next few months will be spent seeking knowledge and planning activities.
We wish you all the warmest of holidays in whatever corner of the world your travels will take you. For Ambassadors, our hearts will be with the children of Africa.