Seasons Greetings from Retrak to all of our supporters! This holiday season we at Retrak have a lot to be thankful for, not the least of which is the continuing support of our GlobalGiving community. Your donations over this past year have enabled hundreds of children in Africa to break away from street life and return to a loving and caring family.
This month, GlobalGiving is giving us the opportunity to stretch your dollars even further. During the month of December, if you sign up for a recurring gift, GG will give a 100% match of your first month’s donation. A recurring donation is easy to set up and automatically goes to your credit card each month so you can help provide a steady income for our work without having to worry about making separate donations each month. GlobalGiving is also giving away additional $500 grants! We need at least 10 new recurring donations before the end of the day Sunday, December 31 EDT in order to be eligible for bonus grants. Can we count on you?
A gift from you can help children like James, who was brought to the Retrak clubhouse in Kampala after having been severely injured. Retrak’s nurse took him to a hospital where he underwent several surgeries and now says “Who could do such an act of favor to a person like me in this city I have lived in and experienced? I thank everyone who supports Retrak to help children like me. I know that Retrak has helped so many children and for this I want to say thank you and may God bless every one.”
We hope you’ll consider making a recurring donation to Retrak so that we can help more children like James. Sign up for a recurring donation here. Be sure to click on the “monthly recurring” option below the large orange “donate” button. Here, you will find instructions on setting up a recurring donation.
Want to give the gift that keeps on giving? Recurring donations can also be given as gifts! Here, you will find instructions on setting up a recurring donation as a gift or in-honor of someone special.
Thanks again and Merry Christmas!
Are you trying to decide what to get your loved ones for Christmas this year? GlobalGiving is making it easy for you to give an alternative gift to everyone on your list.
When you make a donation to one of our projects on behalf of a loved one via GlobalGiving, your loved one will receive a personalized card letting them know that they’re helping street children in Africa. Click here to give a GlobalGiving Tribute Card.
Your gift will help change the lives of some of the most vulnerable children on Earth, like 13-year-old Biruk, who comes from southern Ethiopia. His mother died while giving birth to him, and he lived with his father, stepmother and step-siblings. A severe alcoholic, Biruk's father abused him and would not allow him to eat. Biruk left home and lived with his grandmother for awhile, but this was also very difficult, as she was very old and had no income.
Because of economic hardship and peer pressure, he decided to come to Addis Ababa to work, but the situation was different than he expected and life was very difficult. He stayed on the street for one year, where he suffered from hunger and lack of shelter, occasionally earning some money by carrying luggage at the bus station.
Biruk's friends on the street told him about Retrak. He entered our program and received food, shelter, clothes, education, life skills, medical care and counseling services. Biruk said that “Now Retrak changed me to have good behavior. Retrak also protects me so that I am not bullied by other children. If Retrak did not allow me to join the program I might be lost or dead”.
After he stayed with Retrak for four months, Biruk decided that he wanted to reintegrate with his grandmother. When Biruk arrived home, his grandmother welcomed him with many tears and gave glory to God. She said that her daughter (Biruk’s mother) has risen from death because Biruk is still alive. Retrak staff talked with his grandmother and his uncle about parenting skills and how to earn money and keep savings, and then Retrak provided an income-generating grant. With the grant, Biruk's grandmother decided to buy two goats and shoe shining materials with which she and Biruk could work. She thanks Retrak for protecting her grandson and the family.
Thank you so much for your support of Retrak, which enables us to help children like Biruk. To give your holiday gift through GlobalGiving, just go to the project page and select “Gift or In Honor Of” under the large orange donate button.
Have a wonderful holiday season!
When you make a donation to one of our projects on behalf of a loved one via GlobalGiving, your loved one will receive a personalised card letting them know that they’re helping street children in Africa. Click here to give a GlobalGiving Tribute Card.
Your gift will help change the lives of some of the most vulnerable children on Earth, like Amos, who hobbled into the Retrak drop-in center after having been in the hospital for the previous month after being shot in the abdomen at a riot that happened in town.
“It was mid-day when I saw a stampede from which the police pursued some people. There was a lot of yelling and throwing of stones at the police by the people who never seemed to respect it at all. The police began shooting and in the process two of my friends were shot and died instantly. In that confusion, struggling to save my own life, I became the next victim. The bullet got me in the stomach and I fell to the ground. The policemen came and got me onto their vehicle and took me to Mulago Hospital.”
Amos was admitted in very critical condition, and in the operating room the doctor learned that both Amos’s small and large intestines had been badly damaged by the bullet and Amos needed a colostomy. Amos had no visitors while he was in the hospital, and he was eventually discharged back to the streets. With nowhere else to go and in great pain, another street child directed Amos to Retrak's drop-in center, where the staff nurse took him to another hospital where he was admitted for a colostomy closure.
Two weeks after his operation in December 2011, Amos could finally smile. From then on, he opened up, became very social with others, more than anyone would ever imagine, and was looking forward to being reintegrated with his family. He was also fond of participating in almost every activity that children do at the drop-in center.
He said, “When I recover completely, I would like to go back home and do a skill in welding. I am sure that from this I will earn some money which I will use to support my family, mostly my mum, with whom we’ve struggled all the way. I will also support my siblings, for instance paying school fees and providing them with scholastic materials as well.”
In April, 2012, Amos went through yet another successful operation and he recovered well. He was counseled and eventually returned to his family. Since he was trained in bracelet making at the drop-in center, he was given threads and beads so that he could continue with this skill. Meanwhile he is trying to establish a place for training in welding.
Thank you for your support, which has enabled Retrak to give Amos's story a happy ending. To give your holiday gift through GlobalGiving, just go to the project page and select “Gift or In Honor Of” under the large orange donate button.