Mark completed his quarterly trip to Cambodia in June 2011 where he reviewed all operational aspects of the IDS Patient Family Support Program. Although no significant exceptions were noted, FSP families continue to be impacted by the effects of high local inflation ( double digits ) , rising rents, rising fuel and food prices and costs of medical care. Our goal remains constant: to provide comprehensive compassionate care to mothers and children impacted by extreme poverty and HIV/AIDS , with resources directed toward keeping families together and helping children to break the cycle of inherited poverty.
Program highlights: 5 FSP students graduate from high school
Great news awaited Mark, where he learned that 5 FSP ( 4 girls, 1 boy) children had graduated from high school. Graduation form high school is a commendable achievement in Cambodia, which only a low percentage of students achieve. It is a remarkable achievement for these four FSP students, who come from backgrounds willed with significant impediments such as extreme poverty and the impact that HIV has had on their families, such as the loss of a parent, and the remaining parent suffering from HIV.
Two children, a brother and sister, are the only two surviving family members of a 5 member family. Both father and mother passed away while in the FSP, as did another sibling. These two children are original members of our FSP, and represent a wonderful example of how the longer term assistance of the FSP can help children break the cycle of inherited poverty.
The FSP currently supports the education of 88 children.
Our five high school graduates have dreams of continuing on to college, with annual tuition costs per student of under $1000 . However, as the average monthly budget for supporting an FSP family is currently $118 , a college tuition is currently beyond reach unless we can find additional funding resources for these four students. Dreams include studying law and nursing. Please contact us if you would like to support these efforts or know of financial resources.
Other news: Seisen International School, Tokyo Japan Student Volunteers
Seisen International School, Tokyo, Japan sent 17 high school students and 2 teachers to assist the FSP in Phnom Penh, Cambodia in June 2011 through 12 days of intensive volunteer activities.
Students were divided into two groups. One group of students volunteered at an AIDS Hospice and the second group of students volunteered at the Phnom Penh municipal orphanage. Student volunteers assisted caregivers by providing caring companionship to orphaned, frail and bed bound children through play, singing and individualized companionship and touch.
Some student volunteers initially fought back tears as they learned of the significant and permanent limitations of frail and bed-bound children. However, they immediately took on their challenges with good humor and great kindness and grace, putting forward maximum effort to make a positive impact.
Although children in these institutions receive care, staff members cannot take time to provide more individualized personal attention to young residents. For frail and bed bound children, simple touch and companionship, such as is achieved by simply sitting or rocking a child is a wonderful experience . Our student volunteers were a wonderfully welcome addition to the care team for these children.
Upcoming events:Wild Life Alliance Partners with Kasumisou Foundation
The Wild Life Alliance in partnership with Kasumisou Foundation’s FSP, has arranged for trips for two groups of children to visit a wild life rescue center run by Cambodia’s Ministry of Forestry. These two groups of children, 80 students from our FSP and 60 children from the Phnom Penh Municipal Orphanage, will take a bus trips on September 14 and 16 to Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Center, an area outside of Phnom Penh, to learn more about Cambodia’s endangered species and how they can help to protect them.
As always, we remain grateful for your continued support of our AIDS Patient Family Support Program. Together, truly, we make a difference.
Barbara & Mark Rosasco
May 2011 AIDS Patient Family Support Program Update
Please support GlobalGiving’s Recurring Donation Program and the FSP
Mark visited Cambodia in February 2011 where he met with our Home Care Coordinator and Team to review the status of each family in the FSP. All operational aspects of the FSP remain as described in the program description .The educational progress of the children was discussed along with other issues that need attention, such as the recent imposition of costs for previously fee medical services.
In December, Mark had learned of a significant development that will seriously impact the FSP families and program. Due to recent policy changes by Cambodia/s NPO medical providers, all patients, including the very poorest will now be required to pay fees for medical services which were previously free, such as blood tests and doctor visits. For families living on a razor’s edge of survival, an additional expenditure of $ 5 to $ 10 per month may create life threatening choices for patients. Unless the FSP provides additional funding, it is likely that previously stable patients may skip visits and medication leading to a decline in health and a possibility of developing drug resistant strains of HIV and TB.
For FSP families medicals fees will confront them with a choice of seeking the medical care essential to their continuing survival or of feeding their children.
Food and energy price inflation already threatens the stability of many families and their ability to maintain a level nutrition necessary for survival. At a time when our FSP budget is already gravely strained by a difficult fundraising environment, we must project a possible increase in the allocation to our FSP families of an additional $10,000 for 2011 to our current on site expenditure budget to pay these medical fees or face the simple fact that hungry poor families will choose food over medical care. At the present time we projected the 2011 FSP budget at $ 107,240 and have raised $49,000 from various donors leaving us with substantial funding needs for the second half of 2011.
We urge you to consider making a recurring donation to support our FSP. Just $ 27.50 will support one family for one week. Stable funding is essential for our continued effort to help the FSP families and to give the children in these families the opportunity to break the cycle of inherited poverty.
We are very grateful for your continued support of the AIDS Patient Family Support Program.
Barbara and Mark Rosasco
2011 First Quarter Update
Mark visited Cambodia in November 2010 where he met with our Home Care Coordinator and Team to review the status of each family in the FSP. All operational aspects of the FSP remain as described in the program description . As a part of his visit, Mark also visited almost all of the families currently enrolled in the FSP. This quarterly visit by Mark is a standard practice and it is done in addition to the weekly visits that the Home Care Team makes to each family. Each family’s status is reviewed and the educational progress of the children is discussed along with any other issues that may need additional attention.
In December, after the completion of this trip, Mark learned of a significant development that will seriously impact the FSP families and program.
Due to a recent policy change by the UN’s Global Fund ( for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria) and the large medical NGOs which administer Global Fund services in Cambodia , patients, including the poorest, will now be required to pay small fees for services which were previously free, such as required blood tests and doctor visits. This a serious development for patients for whom an additional unplanned expense of even $ 5 to $ 10 per month could prevent their continued participation in the Global Fund’s program to obtain life saving anti-retroviral medications.
For FSP families, living on the very edge of survival, without increased financial support from our program, these small fees will confront them with a choice of seeking the medical care essential to their continuing survival or of feeding their children.
This alarming development could not have come at a worse time. Food price inflation in the developing world already threatens the ability of many families to maintain a level adequate nutrition necessary for survival.
At a time when our FSP budget is already strained by rising inflation and the difficult fundraising environment, we will need to increase the monthly allocation to our FSP families to pay these medical fees or face the simple fact that hungry poor families will choose food over medical care, an action which will inevitably lead to a rise in mortality and orphaned children. Consequently, you will note that our program support amounts have increased.
The FSP 2010 budget year has been completed, but the GlobalGiving site does not offer an easy way for us to distinguish from 2010 budget needs vs 2011 unless we repost our project.
The 2011 annual budget for the FSP is now projected at $ 106,000 ( $118 per patient family.) At the present time we have raised $32,000 from various donors, leaving us with substantial funding needs.
When including a portion of the costs of fundraising via the GlobalGiving site, this means we will now assume a monthly cost of $ 125 per patient family.
We are most grateful for your continued support of the AIDS Patient Family Support Program.
Check out our most recent press report Dated Sept 2, 2010 online at:
Mark visited Cambodia in late September where according to plan he met with our Home Care Coordinator and Team to review the quarterly status of each family in the FSP. As a part of his visit, Mark also visited almost all of the families currently enrolled in the FSP. During Mark's visits with each family, family status is reviewed and the educational progress of the children is discussed along with any other issues that may need additional attention. At present we now 95 children enrolled in school, up from our previous total of 85.
All operational aspects of the FSP continue as described in the program description without any significant exceptions. The one exception is that our program funding continues to be available unpredictably and only on a month by month basis, causing considerable worries about our ability to maintain non-stop continuation of this program.
Despite these grave funding concerns, we continue to focus on the importance of education in our efforts to encourage children to strive for academic excellence. As many of the parents in the FSP are illiterate, this additional social support which stresses the importance of education is of great importance.
Funding update October 2010
We are grateful to GlobalGiving for its recent Matching Funds event on October 12. Three donors gave a total of $ 6,000 which should earned a 50% funds match of $3,000 . The grand total after paying fees of $900 to Global, this campaign will net a total result of $8,100.
Donations to the FSP from all other sources, excluding GlobalGiving, now total $66,385, leaving a balance of approximately $ 18,000 yet to fund in order to achieve essential minimal program funding for the FSP's 75 families. Total of projected essential program costs remain at $ 88,000 per year, or a cost of $ 1118 per family, but owing to increased local costs this will rise moderately in the near future .
Kasumisou Foundation FSP operates and funds itself month-to-month. The continuing economic climate continues to impact all charities with total donations recently reported to have declined by approximately 11% for 2009. Kasumisou Foundation continues to seek funding to continue essential programs without interruption and to try to restore emergency reserve funds expended in 2008 and 2009 to make up for donor shortfalls. Many donors are experiencing donor fatigue and it is increasingly difficult to secure funding commitments and donations.
Although we are blessed to receive continued support for our projects, at the present time, we are keenly aware that any significant shortfall in funding would mean that we would immediately be forced to stop our support of these 75 families and causing these mothers and their children become homeless within the month. Our top priority continues to be to raise funds to support of our existing program commitments and to try to restore our reserve funds once immediate funding commitments are met.
Thank you all very much for your generous and continued support! We cannot do this without you !
Local Block Party Creates Support Opportunities to Kasumisou Foundation
On Wednesday, June 24, Mark and I rented a table space for $50 at our town’s Annual Block Party, sponsored by the Menlo Park, CA Chamber of Commerce. Although Kasumisou Foundation has been a California registered charity since 1999 , Mark and I have spent most of those years living in Japan, where we have built a loyal group of supporters. Now that we are in the US more often, we thought it would be a good idea to introduce Kasumisou Foundation’s programs to our hometown’s local community with a goal of increasing our support base.
We had the good fortune to have a visit to our table by Ms. LJ Anderson, a feature writer for a local newspaper chain, The Mercury News. Upon learning about the AIDS Patient Family Support Program (FSP) , LJ invited us to be interviewed for her weekly column, which was then published in print and online on July 7, 2010.
Things to remember...
Not everyone gets a summer vacation!
With the summer holidays upon us, it is sometimes easy to forget or defer support for various charitable programs in our local community or in the global community. Global Giving’s recent matching funds campaign was a good reminder to all of us that some folks can’t take a break and “ just get away” for a while. We can however, ease some of their challenges with our continued and regular support.
LJ Anderson featured this photo in her article. The photo shows living conditions in Borey Keila, a slum district in Phnom Penh, Cambodia where several of our other patient families live. This photo gives us a child’s daily view of the world. Despite the many photos like these that I have seen, I am always amazed to think about how difficult it would be to try to raise children in such an environment. But even more importantly, how can a child like the little girl in the photo aspire to more in life if this is the only world that she knows?
This particular photo emphasizes the great value of the social oversight that the FSP provides by stressing educational achievement. We also try to give the children exposure to their rich culture heritage.
Can you imagine the awakening that such a child would experience by attending one of our Apsara Arts Association dance performances? Magical is the only word that I can think of to use.
Mark will return to Cambodia in August or early September.
We have raised a total of $ 4856 for the FSP in combined donations when including the June 16, 2010 GlobalGiving match campaign. This amount also includes another matching donation that we expect will come from a donor's company program. We will need to subtract out approximately $ 456 for fund raising fees paid to GlobalGiving for a net result of about $4400. We continue to seek funding for this program as there are no reserves to support any gap in funding and so the program exists on a month to month basis.
Again, thank you all for your continued support of our programs and for giving the children in the FSP a chance to break the cycle of inherited poverty and work towards a better life.
Have a great summer !
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