Thanks to your support, we have been able to provide hot lunches and nutritional education to the children we serve for 90 days! However, we are in danger of having to put the program on hold due to funding. To this point, we have spent nearly $4,500 toward the program and have around $1,000 remaining. Please give what you can to help keep this program alive.
Since our last report, the nutritionist has continued to meet with the children on a weekly basis, providing guidance and education on the make-up and value of a sound diet. We have received excellent feedback from families on the impact of access to the nutritionist. Parents have reported that their children are much more concerned about what they eat, charting their daily intake and making sure to consume a balanced diet. Additionally, vegetables harvested from the organic garden (maintained by the children, teachers and staff) have recently been incorporated into the meals.
Founder Khaled Jaraysa sees benefit beyond the nutritional value of a sound diet. "It is important for the kids to see a direct, positive result from something they have invested time and hard work into," said Jaraysa. "When the vegetables they planted were brought to the table, it was a very rewarding moment for [the kids]."
Proper nutrition enhances the success of our educational and therapeutic programs. We need your continued support to keep this program alive.
We are pleased to report some exciting progress in our campaign to restore the lunch program in Bethlehem. Thanks to your support, we have been able to offer lunch to the 33 children we serve for close to two months.
Last week, the campaign entered its second phase, as we welcomed Ms. Abeer Najjar to our team. Ms. Najjar is a trained nutritionist who will be offering support to the children and their families on a weekly basis. Our founder, Khaled Jaraysa, was present as parents and students met with her for the first time. "[Ms. Najjar] was scheduled to meet with families to answer questions for thirty-minutes, but the parents were so thrilled to have access to her expertise that she fielded nutritional questions for more than ninety minutes," said Jaraysa.
Ms. Najjar will work with the children to instill the importance of proper nutrition. Over the next week, the students will keep food diaries to assist in the identification of areas for dietary-improvement. "Thanks to this program, we have already been able to identify deficiencies in iron and key vitamins," said Jaraysa. "It is so exciting to have a nutritionist on board because, ultimately, better nutrition will enhance the success of all of our programs."
While these new developments are encouraging, we want hope to ensure their financial stability. Through GlobalGiving, we have raised just over $5,300 for this project. We have used close to half of these funds to get the program up and running. In order to fully-fund the program for the year, we must raise an additional $11,690. Your gift of $50 would fund a day of nutritionally-balanced lunches for all of the children. We would really appreciate your support at any level.
Dear Children of Peace Supporters,
Thank you everyone for your support so far! Thanks to you, we raised over $5,000 in December and have officially started the hot lunch program for the traumatized children at the center in Bethlehem. Our hope is that, with your help, we can raise the remaining $12,000 by August 2012. This will enable us to fully fund the program and provide food and training for the children and their families in the area.
From the funds donated, we have spent $750 so far on food. Some of the lunches we've prepared include:
We have also begun planning a vegetable garden for the kids to help in their therapy and in their meals. Some of the vegetables we plan on growing will be: lettuce, cabbage, cauliflower, and sweet Walla Wall onions from Washington State.
We greatly appreciate your continued support for this project. Your donations matter to a lot of people and we are glad you chose to support us. Please consider spreading the word about us by Liking us on Facebook or following us on Twitter. The links are below.
Thank you and we will follow up with more information soon!
Children of Peace Foundation
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