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 !
Barbara & Mark Rosasco
Mark has just returned from Cambodia where he met with our Home Care Coordinator and Team to review the 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. 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. 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.
All operational aspects of the FSP continue as described in the program description without any significant exceptions.
We continue to expand our efforts to engage the children in the FSP more actively in order to encourage them to work toward greater academic achievement. As many of the parents in the FSP are illiterate, this additional social support which stresses the importance of education takes on an even more important role.
We see signs that our efforts are beginning to pay off. In the past, children in the FSP almost never voiced dreams involving educational goals, so it was quite exciting when one young lady, age 14 , when showing Mark her rapidly improving English fluency, announced that she aspires to become a doctor! A long time member in our FSP and excellent student, this young teen and her sister , age 10, are both HIV positive and at times symptomatic of AIDS. Her father passed away from AIDS and her mother, who also has AIDS, goes up and down with the her illness.
There are currently about 120 children in the FSP. Of the 89 school age children who in the FSP, we are pleased to note that during the past school year, 5 of our students have been ranked in the top 5 of their class. One child, an orphaned FSP child who is now a permanent boarding student in another Kasumisou Foundation program, is the top ranked student in her middle school class.
The fate of the parents in the FSP has already been decided by their health status: they have HIV/AIDS. However, the children face a world that is still full of possibilities. It remains our continuing goal to help these children to break the cycle of inherited poverty. We feel that a long term effort of providing educational opportunity and building self esteem is vital to achieving that goal.
At the present time you have collectively donated $ 3,925 to our FSP via the GlobalGiving project site. We are also grateful for matching funds of $ 850 that we have received from GlobalGiving bring total FSP donations via the GlobalGiving website to $ 4,775. Total funding costs attributed to GlobalGiving, when including their gift of matching funds average about 5% of the total amount raised via their site.
Donations to the FSP from all other sources, excluding GlobalGiving, now total $61,385, leaving a balance of approximately $ 23,000 yet to fund in order to achieve minimal program funding for the FSP's 75 families. Total projected program costs remain at $ 88,000 per year, or a cost of $ 1118 per family.
Kasumisou Foundation FSP operates and funds itself month-to-month. The continuing economic climate continues to impact all charities with total donations often significantly lower than in past years, with Kasumisou Foundation feeling the same sorts of challenges.
Although we are blessed to receive continued support for our projects, at the present time, all of the donations that we receive are quickly used for current program expenditures as we were forced to spend our reserves during the uncertain times of 2008 and 2009 . Until we can begin to restore our reserves, we are keenly aware that a shortfall in funding means 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. So 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.
Once, again, thank you all very much for your generous support!
Your generous support of our programs has enabled many of the mothers in the FSP to living longer, allowing families to stay together longer. A stable lifestyle with adequate nutrition and housing support allows these mothers to qualify for free anti-retroviral medications through programs such as the UN’s Global Fund for Aids, Malaria and Tuberculosis. Social oversight is a vital part of our program and we are hopeful that over longer term allow we can help the children in these families break out of the poverty cycle
Again, thanks so much for making it possible for our programs to continue.
Please feel free to contact us for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org
Impact of mega-disasters on small NGOs-
On March 2, NY Times Nick Kristof responded to Kasumisou Foundation and discussed the funding impact of mega disasters on small NGOs. Adequate and stable funding is what allows Kasumisou to continue to help people like Mrs. San ( profiled below) who has just joined the AIDS Patient Family Support Program.
See NYTimes.com- Nicholas D. Kristof's Blog link below
Please meet our newest family:
Mrs. San is a 30 year old mother with HIV/AIS and a 2nd grade education. Despite these challenges, she has been trying to raise her children on her own for the past year. A mother of three children ages 8,4 and 16 months, San was infected with HIV by her husband who abandoned her once she showed symptoms of AIDS. The only home that she can provide for her children is the shack you see in the slide show which she watches over in return for free rent. Sadly, San could not afford to feed her children, causing them to suffer from serious malnutrition. Little Lo Ud, age 4 is seen here standing before her front steps.
Now our Family Support Program will provide adequate food and family support. The FSP Home Care Team will visit San at least once a week to make certain that she and her children will have enough nutritious food and access to the medical care that they need. Our Home Care Team is also a key resource to arrange for patient access to free medical resources, to enroll and keep children in school and to carefully monitor each family’s particular situation, with particular attention paid to the safety, welfare and nutrition for the children. Over the coming weeks we will also assess San’s housing situation and monitor her son in school.
In the past three months you have donated $ 3,487 to our FSP via the GlobalGiving project site. We are also grateful to GlobalGiving for additional matching funds of $ 850 bringing total donations via GlobalGiving to $4,337. Now, as we reach the end of the 1st Quarter, we report that we also received $7110 from other donors, for a combined total of $11,447, representing 13.6% vs 25% of the total program funding that is needed for 2010. Understandably, we have experienced a noticeable shift in donor participation as donors inform us that efforts are more focused on raising funds for Haiti relief projects.
We currently serve 75 single parent families who suffer from mid to late stage AIDS and their 125 dependent children.
Adding up the numbers:
When you add it all up: our super-efficient FSP supports a family at a cost of $93 per month. Multiply $93 x 75 families x 12 and this equals the total minimum annual funding need for these 200 people or about $84,000. This equates to $1116 per family per year and approximately $420 per person. In addition to the basic cost per family we also require funds to pay for school costs, supplies and uniforms bringing us to our projected annual program cost of $88,000.
Funding challenges and Opportunity
Tuesday, 16 March 2010 is a GlobalGiving Matching Day! Boost the value of your contribution by taking advantage of the Global Giving match program. All donations (up to $1,000 per person) made to our project through GlobalGiving.org on that day will automatically be matched at 30%.
Kasumisou Foundation FSP operates and funds itself month-to-month. The economic climate has hit all charities very hard. Adding to this challenge is the impact of current disasters around the world. Lack of funding means 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. We must all try to remember that new projects present an opportunity to expand our donor support to include newly urgent needs, but try to continue our support of existing commitments.
Thank you for your support!
Because of the generous support of our donors, many of the mothers in the FSP are living longer and families can stay together. A stable lifestyle, good nutrition and housing support allows these mothers to qualify for free anti-retroviral medications through programs such as the UN’s Global Fund for Aids,Malaria and Tuberculosis. Social oversight is a vital part of our program and we are hopeful that over longer term allow we can help the children in these families break out of the poverty cycle
Please feel free to contact us for more information at email@example.com
Again, thanks so much for your support of our efforts.
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