Village Earth

Village Earth helps reconnect communities to the resources that promote human well-being by enhancing social and political empowerment, community self-reliance and self-determination. We do this by strengthening intermediate and grassroots organizations through fiscal sponsorship, networking, training, research and advocacy.
Jan 20, 2015

'Provide Quality Education to 200 Khmer Children'

This report covers Human and Hope Association’s education activities over the past three months. At Human and Hope Association, our aim is to empower Cambodians to create sustainable futures for themselves. We achieve this through a holistic approach to development that focuses on education, vocational training and community support.

The funds raised through our GlobalGiving campaign are currently being used to fund our education program. Since initially launching the campaign, our costs have increased, so we are still short of funds to finance this program for a whole year, however we can fund it for almost 10 months. These funds are currently being used to fund staff salaries and purchase new supplies for our classrooms.

The budget for 2015 is as follows:

  • Resources (i.e. A4 paper, photocopying, flash cards, library books, soy
  • Education and Community Manager salary (half, split with his other role)-
  • Education and Community Coordinator salary (half, split with his other
  • English Teacher salary - $1,791
  • Education and Library Assistant salary - $1,615

Our education program has achieved a lot this past quarter:

  • We have maintained 110 students in our English program
  • 12 students are studying preschool daily
  • Our library is now open for extended hours and has brought in more
  • Art class now has a regular attendance of around 30 children
  • Movie club has expanded
  • Our Khmer students are now learning sentences
  • Our teachers have partaken in phonics training
  • Library time has been incorporated into our English curriculum once a
  • The behavior of our students has improved dramatically due to our living
  • We have provided hygiene training to 120 students
  • More than 100 students have participated in workshops to raise

To read more in detail about what we achieved in 2014, please take a look at our annual report here: http://goo.gl/hIAtNH

Thank you for your support!

Team HHA

Links:

Jan 13, 2015

Oct. - Jan 2015 Report

For those of you who are new to the Lakota Lands Recover Project, we are a grassroots support organization that serves the region of the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. The LLRP is working to support grassroots organizations on Pine Ridge that are working to reclaim and consolidate tribal lands and access the resources needed for the Lakota people to live on, protect, and utilize it, helping to return the balance between economy, ecology, and culture.

The time from October - January 2015 has primarily been focused on supporting our affiliated grassroots organizations on the Pine Ridge and Cheyenne River Reservations. However, we are currently doing research on the impact of the USDA?FSA Indian Tribal Lands Consolidation Loan Program, a program that provides loans at full interest to tribes to purchase highly fractionated lands. For the Pine Ridge Reservation, virtually all the income they receive from leasing their lands to non-tribal members goes to pay down these loans. Even worse, because of these loans, the USDA holds a lien on all the land owned by Tribe - which gives them final say on all land-use/exchange/sale decisions, which we feel severely compromses their rights of sovereignty and self-determination. To research this we have submitted a Freedom of Information Act Request to USDA: FSA to better understand the history of these loans and how other tribes have been impacted by them. Pending the results of our FOIA request, we hope to have something published by summer 2015. 

Dec 11, 2014

Village Earth: Building Capacity at the Grassroots

Village Earth Strategic Planning Workshop
Village Earth Strategic Planning Workshop

This report covers Village Earth's activites over the past three months. If you are a new supporter of Village Earth than you should know that the mission of Village Earth is to reconnect communities to the resources that promote human well-being by enhancing social and political empowerment, community self-reliance and self-determination. We do this by strengthening intermediate and grassroots organizations through fiscal sponsorship, networking, training, research and advocacy. Our flagship program to achieving this mission is our Global Affiliate Program where we partner with innovative and impactful grassroots and intermediate organizations and provide a number of support services that help them access more resources and be more effective on the ground. We believes that local community organizations or groups can best identify their own needs and aspirations. Village Earth’s Global Affiliate Program, by providing a support structure, enables community groups to access information and to find the resources they need to enhance or expand what they are already doing, or would like to do in a sustainable future as they envision it.

We are proud to partner with such groups as:

  • Empowering Youth Cambodia: working with the next generation of youth leaders living in Cambodia’s over-crowded urban slums;
  • Forum for Community Change and Development in South Sudan: advancing the rights of women in a country in deep conflict;
  • Jenzera: working to protect the rights and territories of indigenous and ethnic minorities in Colombia.

These are just three of the 17 different grassroots organizations that are part of our Global Affiliate Program.

Below is a testimonial from one of our Global Affiliates the Knife Chief Buffalo Nation Organization based on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. 

“Knife Chief Buffalo Nation, a grassroots organization on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, raises buffalo and provides for their care as they provide spiritual and physical nourishment for the Lakota people.  The buffalo are central to the Lakota spiritual way of life and we are honored to do this work although it is often very challenging to obtain resources for all that is needed to be done.  Village Earth helps Knife Chief Buffalo Nation to meet these challenges by providing technical assistance, fiscal accountability and support for our work.  We are fortunate to have such an organization to partner with!”

-- Ethleen Iron Cloud Two Dogs, Board Member of Knife Chief Buffalo Nation Organization

Accomplishments This Quarter

  • Worked with each of our 17 Global Affiliates to develop a end-of-year fundraising plan. Many of our affilaites are not aware of the large culture of philanthropy that exists in the United States and aren't familiar with the various cultural norms for asking for donations for their projects. Village Earth works with our affiliates to assemble a compelling story of the work they are doing and get that message out via the web, email, direct mail, etc. We also provide US fiscal sponsorship for our affiliates which allows donors to get a tax-deduction for supporting them. The larger goal of this program is for our Affiliates to build an individual donor-base which enhances autonomy and local self-determination relative to grants or contracts which often have predefined outcomes and other "strings" attached.
  • Supporting one of our Affiliates based on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, "Tasunke Wakan", to host a conference this month called "Healing the Spirit of the Child , Youth and Family Conference"
  • We have begun discussions with three new potential affiliates based in Cambodia, Uganda, and Liberia and are undergoing our due-dilligence. 
  • Ongoing work of donation processing and promotion of Global Affiliates. 

Challenges

  • As one might expect, we have some Affiliates that are much more computer/web savvy than others and have trouble getting quality narratives and photos from some groups. 
  • Lack of measurable indicators of "impact" of our support programs makes it difficult to convey OUR story. 
  • Lots of knowledge regardind project and org management and fundraising within our network of Affiliates is "siloed".

Next Steps

  • We plan to continue to grow our program to enhance sustainability but to also maximize peer learning and peer support by creating more opportunities for networking (online and in-person). 
  • We plan to develop a more effective mechanism to identify the needs of each Global Affiliate and develop customized support plans. 
  • Consistent with the above step, we want to develop some baseline indicators for each affiliate along with regular assessments to better mesure progress towards shared goals. 

Conclusion

Village Earth's Global Affiliate Program, while only in its third year, has grown rapidly and has proven its value to our 17 different Global Affiliates. By growing the program and both refining and expanding our services, we are confident it will become a powerful resource for growing and expanding grassroots organizations around the globe - building local and regional capacity and resiliency. 

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