International Disaster Volunteers (IDV)

At IDV we believe that to provide meaningful relief and reconstruction assistance to disaster affected communities around the world we have to do more than reconstruct buildings. We need to understand and address the factors that made a community vulnerable to the disaster in the first place. Our work will be organised with these factors in mind so we can effect change that far outlives our presence.
Jan 27, 2015

Your Incredible Impact at San Agustin School

The kindergarten class has a new classroom
The kindergarten class has a new classroom

We’re delighted to announce that, thanks to your amazing support, our work at the San Agustin school is complete!

With your help we began supporting the education of San Agustin’s 256 kids following typhoon Haiyan.  We started by repairing and refurbishing all the school’s existing classrooms and we also built a kitchen.  We then built handwashing stations and concrete walkways to keep kids clean and out of the mud. We also made school fun by painting beautiful, educational murals.

But one more big improvement was also recently finished thanks to your fantastic generosity.

This was a brand new 30’ x 23’ classroom for the school’s kindergarten class.

Following the typhoon the kids in this class were learning in a tent, which was unbearably hot in the sun.  Over time the tent also became incredibly moldy.  Overall it was vital that we move the kids into a proper classroom.

The new classroom’s foundations and walls were completed last fall, but there was still a lot of work left to be done.  Since then, the classroom’s roof has been built, and the windows have also been installed.  This made the building watertight and we could then turn our focus to the interior.

We think the end result is stunning, and this is all thanks to you!

We wanted to provide the kids with the most enriching environment possible and each of the classroom’s different “areas” contributes to an amazing overall outcome.

The first is a library area, which is a comfortable and beautiful place for the kids to learn from the many books and puzzles we’ve provided.

The walls of the teaching area are decorated with amazing murals, including a “measuring tree” so that the kids can see how they’ve grown!

Finally, there’s also an “E-learning” area which has been equipped with computers and a printer.  The computers have been installed with educational software for maths and languages.  This E-Lab area is now being used by all of the school’s other classes, not just the youngest, and so all of the teachers have received training on how to use the equipment.

The San Agustin school is not far from Tacloban but it’s more rural location means that its kids are often poorer and were more neglected than those in the center of the city.  But now their education, and their futures, have been given a huge boost!

We wouldn’t have been able to do any of this without donors like you. So on behalf of IDV, and the kids and teachers of San Agustin - thank you so much!

As always, if you ever have any queries about how we’re using your donation, please don’t hesitate to email I would be delighted to hear from you.

The kids LOVE the classroom
The kids LOVE the classroom's library area!
The E-Lab area with the teaching area behind it
The E-Lab area with the teaching area behind it
Jan 27, 2015

Helping Filipinos Help Themselves, Thanks to You!

The center
The center's second floor is now usable!

Thanks to your amazing generosity we've recently worked with our partner Buklod Tao to improve the Banaba Livelihood and Evacuation Center, just outside of Manila.

The main structure of the center was built by another NGO but their funding ran out before work could be completed.  While some of the building was usable, only the first floor had windows and this meant the upper two floors were badly exposed to the elements.  The center also lacked a mains water supply and only had two working bathrooms.

For most of the year the center is used to host Buklod Tao's impactful community development projects.  But with windows on only one floor even moderate rain would disrupt these projects.

During typhoons the center is intended to be used as a safe place for sixty evacuated families.  But with protection, sanitation and water supply all limited only a very few could use the building.

This was all incredibly frustrating for Buklod Tao who work tirelessly to improve their community and to help protect it from disasters.

But thanks to your support, we’ve been able to make great progress on making the center usable over the last few months.

The center’s second floor is now watertight and secure, thanks to both windows and security bars being installed.  We’ve also finished construction work on the centre's second and third floor bathrooms.  This work has doubled the amount of usable space in the center and it's also doubled the amount of usable sanitation facilities.

With your help a rainwater harvesting system and pump have also been installed to provide the water supply.

The harvesting system can store over 650 gallons and we’ve helped train Buklod Tao in how to sterilise the contained water.  This means families evacuated during typhoons can now receive safe drinking water without outside help being necessary.

Thanks to you we’ve also added additional cooking facilities at the center. This is already allowing Buklod Tao’s “Community Kitchen” to provide even more hot meals to evacuees during typhoons.

Outside of typhoons one of the community development projects based at the center involves teaching vegetable gardening to families.  This provides families with better nutrition and more food security.

It’s a great project so we’ve recently supported its growth through the construction of a greenhouse at the center for seedlings.

This greenhouse, and all the other recent work at the center, was only possible because of your kind and generous donations.  Because of your gifts Buklod Tao will be able to help their own community even more in 2015.  Thanks so much for your support!

As always, if you ever have any questions about how we’re using your donations, please don’t hesitate to email I would be delighted to hear from you.

A rainwater harvesting system now stores 650 gls
A rainwater harvesting system now stores 650 gls
The new greenhouse helps with food security
The new greenhouse helps with food security
Jan 27, 2015

Exciting Developments at EIM Institute, Haiti

Students and teachers, excited about the new land!
Students and teachers, excited about the new land!

Thanks to your amazing support the English in Mind (EIM) Institute is thriving!

First of all, we’re delighted to announce that EIM has recently purchased it’s own land in Port-au-Prince.

EIM’s new mango tree-filled property is located on a quiet street not far from the airport. It’s the perfect location and with land secured the next step is to raise more funds, and to build the school that EIM’s students and teachers have always dreamed of.

EIM will still rent space at another school until these further funds have been raised, but we couldn’t be more thrilled that EIM now has a space to call its own.

Early construction planning has already begun and the land is already being used to hold outdoor conversation classes while gardening and clearing the site.

In other news, November’s exam retakes also yielded two more graduates for EIM! A huge congratulations goes out to Alex and Samuel. They will join our other graduates, Merove and Richardson, in taking the TOEFL exam in the summer of 2015.

Meanwhile, EIM’s hosting of international volunteer trips continues to go strongly. In 2014, nine different groups of volunteers from all over the world participated in 10-day programs through EIM.

Working closely with native English speakers and visitors from all over the globe has truly given our school an advantage and allowed its students to connect to the broader world through shared language.

With new students, new volunteer trips and new construction planning ahead, we’re very excited to see what 2015 will bring.

All of this success wouldn’t be possible without your support - thanks so much once again!

We still need more funds to keep EIM running, to fund construction and to sponsor our graduates through their TOEFL qualifications.  So, if you can, please consider donating to one of these needs today.

As always, if you ever have any questions about how we’re using your donations, please don’t hesitate to email I would be delighted to hear from you.

Fun conversations are enjoyed while gardening.
Fun conversations are enjoyed while gardening.

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