Nigeria - from "our Anu" and mother of "Hope"

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Widow's Mite...


The last time i read about the Widow's mite was in the bible....it is a story about a woman characterised by uncommon art of giving....she never hesitated to donate her last mite to her master! Really, I never knew the reality of giving your last card out on charity basis until recently when i was "tempted" to do likewise~and i had no option!

Yes, November 18th, 2010 is another day that i won't ever forget in a jiffy....just 4days after my birthday...although, the day started out on a bad note...my cutie, lovely baby girl was ill and i had to take her to the clinic...it sucks to watch your love ones hurt...and sucks more when you cannot do much to alleviate the pains and hurts....but, the day ended with smiles and good feelings... :)

Inasmuch as i hate to write about what i do to help others, i just cannot help but write about this, for some good reasons....Prior to that day, i've been receiving frantic calls from one of our mentees who needed some help because he was returning to the University...and he had no money to go back having lost his father some few days back....exactly two weeks ago!

At first my reaction was passive, because i felt i had no money...my salary for the past 2months hasn't been paid and i just knew it that i wouldn't be able to help in this situation....i felt hurt really, but what could i do when i needed help myself....:)

Then, i remembered i had N3,000 in my bank savings account....that was my last but "surviving" cash. And, my first reaction was a no-no-no .....because it sounded like a huge joke....giving out all my savings....just like that?! It was a difficult decision for me to make, but then, i remember how much this young man needs the money....i know he needs some financial assistances badly because only recently had he gained admission into the University and he's got lots of dues to pay for....and to worsen it all....his father died when he needed him most!!! Life seems so cruel to him...but then, his own life must go on...and, to the university, he must return...

Finally, i summon the courage to do as my heart bids me, and i left for the bank and emptied my widow's mite and transfered it into his account. ......finally, yes finally, i bid farewell to my surviving cash...lol.

Half of the time on my way on....i thought of my action deeply....a part of me regretted the action, but another part rejoiced greatly because I've only saved a soul....that needed some help....i felt happy and struggled to put my action behind me....remembering the woman in the bible who gave her all and was thereafter blessed for it....and, that truly was my consolation.....that, maybe some day.....maybe, i shall be remembered for good too.... i thought....i wished...i prayed solemnly...:)

Then, and then....my phone beeped....I received a text message from a friend who attended an annual WOMEN SYMPOSIUM organised by an ngo in my country. She wrote to alert me that I've just been awarded the sum of 750 dollars (N115,000) for my youths project! I wowed!!!!

I just couldn't contain myself....as i leapt for joy....isn't it amazing how sometimes our little and unrecognised act of kindness culminates to greater blessings...?

India - toys arrive for the prison and street children.

Friday, November 19, 2010






Uganda - Lunch4learning

Saturday, November 13, 2010





Uganda Lunch4Learning

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Support to purchase 200 agricultural/gardening tools furnished to Lunch4Learning


EKYEMISANA becomes LUNCH4LEARNING on 1 October. We aim to improve the learning experience of Ugandan primary children by helping schools provide a lunchtime meal. The first pages of the new 'lunch4learning.org' website should be available on 1 October. As Ekyemisana, we have been helping Ugandan primary schools start and maintain plots on which they grow food to feed their children at lunchtime. This is a completely sustainable activity involving schools and their extended local communities. Our work started in 2008 and we are already working with 37 schools and have 34,065 children in our programme. Attendance at school is considerably better - a first step towards accessing education. But the need to build upon our work is crucial and that growth is only limited by the funding that we are able to generate. We can include a child in the programme at a 'one-off' average cost of 59p/$0.90. We are currently working in the District of Jinja where there are 212,000 children registered in schools. To achieve our objectives, we are working with the Ministry of Education, Local Government and the Church of Uganda. Should we succeed in this Challenge, we could add a further 850 children (one school) to the programme.

In July, I visited Uganda, ran some workshops and with the help of some generous donors, we increased the number of children in the programme to 34,065. As that was also harvest time, it was very exciting to see crops ready to be picked.


During last week's visit, that number was increased to just under 50,000 across 54 schools. I am still putting together some important data I brought back but it seems we have increased the amount of land under our care from 121 acres to around 190 acres. I also opened talks with local government and the Church of Uganda. They are both much better informed about our work and have declared that they will release land for our programme. How much is something I will have to nail down in the weeks ahead. Similar conversations have started with the Madhvani family who run the biggest sugar plantations in Uganda. I have a meeting with them in London in mid-February.


We recognise an urgent need to collect data that will help us assess the impact of our work in the standards of learning across the schools involved in the programme. To that end, we have renewed to April 2011, the position of the District Coordinator whom we have put on a retainer to liaise with schools and report to trustees in Kampala. That brings me to the new administration structure in Uganda.


During the course of this year, Trustees recognised that using the 'Ekyemisana' name was creating obstacles in our fundraising efforts in the UK. So, on 1 October we became Lunch4Learning in the UK whilst we continue to use Ekyemisana in Uganda. We are now, therefore, effectively 2 organisations. Lunch4Learning will operate in the UK and will also raise funds in the USA and Canada. Ekyemisana will operate in Uganda only.


We have registered Ekyemisana in Uganda with a different board of 9 trustees, 7 of which are Ugandans. The memorandum and articles of association have now become our constitution in Uganda. This registration, has allowed us, in turn, to open a bank with Standard Chartered and will facilitate the flow of funds from the UK to Uganda.


The application process for NGO status is also underway. All these tasks are being undertaken on our behalf by Shunobi-Musoke Legal Associates. Mr Peters Musoke is a trustee of both the Ekyemisana board and the Lunch4Learning board.


Ekyemisana trustees have approved the job description for the appointment of a Programme Manager who will liaise with District Coordinators, fundraise locally and report quarterly to Ekyemisana trustees and to myself here in the UK. That position will take effect from 1 February 2011.


One of the trustees has generously given us office space in Kampala at no cost to the charity. He has also agreed to pay the Programme Manager's salary for a year.


You know about our order for 300 hoes that will go into schools on 1 February. I will try to edit the video (which is in 5 sections) before sending it off to you.


So, as you can see, we have been very busy but the challenge of fundraising continues in Oxford where administration continues to be cost-free.

Spain - Melanie attends European Conference on Romani Cuture et al

These are photos of the First Congress of Roma Women, meeting in Barcelona.


Hosted by Drom Kotar Mestipen.
Melanie Price and Rita Varey were two Roma Women invited to the first Congress of Roma Women in Europe.

The congress is to Unite Roma Women in a view to empowering them, via their Human Rights, and Dignity. Also to find ways to dispel the stigma, that goes with the name Roma, or Gypsy.

Over 300 women gathered in Barcelona in October this year. The Mayor of Barcelona hosted all 300 women with a wonderful dinner in the City Hall.

For 3 days, the women gathered together in the audetorium to share ideas in what they could do to be included into society, and to be accepted by the World Governments and Countries.

Many positive testimonies were given, as women after women told of how they had been persecuted and had racial abuse directed at them, but they all told of how they had to avoid all negativity from the media, and the locals, to rising above it, and staying focused on changing peoples concept of the Roma, which has been very negatively viewed to the European public.

Roma women were Air cabin crew,Conference Hostess s,Domestic Engineers. One girl was a training to be a Police Woman. Another was a teachers assistant. Many were working in Social work. Some admitted they didn t tell their employer what race they came from. Some Roma Women had started their own busines s in Dancing, and Music, and Cultural Understanding Seminars.

All women had many stories in common, and the whole Spirit of the Congress was Electrifying as the Roma Women gave Hope to one another.

Most Roma Women could speak Romanes, and so Communication was easily accessed.

Everyone agreed that those Roma Women who couldn t speak the languge, should learn themselves, and their future Generations, so Culture, Language, and Traditions can be kept alive, and shown to the World, that Roma has a virtual Nation of its own, and will keep its identy, whithout the old problems of being misunderstood, and kept as a social low class Citizens,status .

Outcome, Countries United, via the Roma Women. Cross networking. Invites to teach Roma History

Nigeria - Resource Sharing Network

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

We trust that you are doing greatly wherever you are... Wishing you good health, peace and happiness, always. Attached herewith are some of the photographs of our last Mentoring


Orientation Program held at Sweet Sensation Hall, Opebi, Ikeja. Special Highlights of the day include: Presentation of Award to Best

Mentors/Mentees

2009 Most Well-Behaved Mentee -Farouk Tackie an ex-student of Opebi Grammar Sch., Ikeja.

2009 Best Mentee- Oshovire Onofe who was the best graduating student in his 2009 set, He scored 290 in JAMB and presently a student of the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta. Also, an ex-student of Opebi

Grammar Sch., Ikeja.

2009 Best Mentor -Mr. Tunde Majiyagbe (UBA)

2009 Most Supportive Mentor -Mrs. Taiye Falolu of Standard Chartered Bank,

Really, these mentors have demonstrated high level of commitment to the mentoring schemes and they have affected more lives.

And, to our Professional Guest Speakers:

Mr. Tunde Olubola -UK Certified Educationist

Mr. John Ekundayo - A COREN registered engineer and Organizational

Leadership Graduate from the Monash University, Australia. He is based in Malaysia

Mrs. Olubola Adeleye - UK Qualified Mortgage, Loans and Insurance Broker

Engr. Zaidan - Quality Assurance Manage, ARIK Air

Mr. Adewale Adebusoye - A young professional and Computer Science M.Sc holder from Netherlands.



Thank you to Kay and Ann - miscellaneous countries

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Thank you to Ann and Kay for their wonderful generosity and the supply of stocked pencils cases, toys and trinket boxes. In the near future worthy recipients will benefit from their kindness.

Kenya -Thank you to the David Tyler Trust

Thank you to the David Tyler Trust for the substantial provision of pencils, biros. jotters and mathematical sets for needy students in Kitale, Kenya.

Nigeria - London

Science books, educational supplies, teachers' notes and lesson plans arrive safely in London with Ayodele for onward passage to needy teachers in Nigeria.


Nigeria - Resource Sharing Network

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Please, be reminded that our Annual Mentoring Orientation Program is TODAY.


And, we look forward to meeting you there!!

Venue: Sweet Sensation, Hall, Opebi Ikeja

Time: 12:00noon prompt
Car Park Space: Abiola International School (Opposite Sweet Sensation).


THANK YOU.

"Every mentoring match can thrive if the mentor puts in the right

amount of time, dedication, and effort."

Nepal - Metta Centre from Piya

Our children and Nepalese are celebrating Dipawali...kind of celebration with music, song, lighting. and the sisters respecting their brothers so that sisters get gift form their brothers, fire works and prayer to the Lucky ..money Goddess called Laxmi is honoured, fireworks, food, family get together similar to the Xmas celebration. These are the some of the features of the Dipawali...The Festival of Light, flowers. I will send you some pictures after the event. The festival is going on now and on Monday ( 8 Novemner) is the last day of the event. But our kids are not enjoying as others do...as they are away from their families yet we bring them to others family, outings, food..and fun that they deserve. Love from kids
piya

India - toys for prison and street children.

Friday, November 05, 2010

Thanks to Ann and Santa's wee Village, toys begin their journey to India for prison and street children.
Safe journey Carol. photographs to follow.