Dear Friends and Supporters,
Mindanao was mercifully spared from the devastation of Typhoon Yolanda or Haiyan. However, KI volunteers, Ash and Nafisah placed at Gualandi Volunteer Service Programme (GVSP) in Cebu City, have been working hard with the relief effort. GVSP works with the Deaf and other people with disability, in times of disaster this group of people are often even more marginalized. GVSP has been delivering relief and psychosocial support to those in need and their families in Northern Cebu and surrounding islands where the aid response has been limited.
Ash has been working on the distribution of aid and translating signing to the hearing whilst Nafisah has been in charge of managing the donations and helping with the monumental task of organizing the logistics to procure and distribute the relief goods.
The areas affected are almost 100% Christian and so the sight of a Muslim helping their fellow Filipinos in the Visayas can only help to break down the barriers between them.
We also can report that previous KI volunteers are working as staff for the big International aid agencies in Tacloban and other areas in Leyte and Samar. This demonstrates how our project impacts in the long term. Our volunteers carry their experience and skills with them for life, empowering them to affect change in society not only when they are volunteers but for many years after.
Thank you for your support
The following is an e-postcard from Zamil Akhtar, a GlobalGiving Representative in the Philippines:
Teamwork and critical thinking were emphasized during KI’s volunteer boot camp. Not every volunteer is selected; a rigorous process excludes those who are not motivated or lack ingenuity. I doubted I would be able to pass after hearing the volunteers discuss a practice question that had to do with saving lives on a sinking ship. But those who do pass go on to do great things: many of the former volunteers are now working for major NGO’s. There’s no doubt this program is life changing for these volunteers; it is also hoped that these volunteers will help foment peace in a troubled region.
Dear Friends and Supporters
We are now in the month of Ramadan but KI staff and volunteers are not slowing down their hectic schedule. KI has begun the selection process of the next group of 10 volunteers who will make up the 8th Batch. Over 80 young people from across Mindanao applied to our program. After an initial pre-screening the number of candidates was reduced to 28. These candidates are currently undergoing a tough one-day assessment so that the final 10 volunteers can be selected. They will then receive 4 weeks of development training before being placed in the host organizations in early September.
KI has also been training some of its Alumni volunteers to become selectors for the assessment process. This is part of our long term goal that all functions of the program are carried out by our former youth volunteers
Your donations are vital to the continuation of the project. We run a streamlined organization, keeping our operating costs to a bare minimum, so that we can train as many volunteers as possible.
Thank you again for your support
KI is very excited to share with our supporters that our project was recognized by a top award. Our Muslm Youth Volunteering program won 4th place at 2012 Intercultural Innovation award in Vienna, Austria which were announced in February 2013. KI hopes to use the award to expand the program into new areas of Mindanao and to run a pilot project in other partsof the Philippines. The coveted international Award is part of an unprecedented partnership between the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) and the BMW Group. Designed to contribute towards social stability and economic growth in multicultural societies, the Award is given to innovative grassroots projects promoting intercultural dialogue and understanding. The award ceremony was attended by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon who announced the winners of the 2012 Intercultural Innovation Award. President Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, Incoming United Nations High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, and Mr. Bill McAndrews, Vice President Communications Strategy, Corporate and Market Communications, BMW Group, presented the Award. UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador Placido Domingo was also in attendance to congratulate all the winners. “I commend the leadership shown by the BMW Group in supporting this Award and the projects that are being recognized” stated the Secretary-General. “The creative solutions being showcased tonight hold lessons for all communities and for organizations such as the United Nations.”
Awardees benefit from customized expertise and resources of both the BMW Group and the UNAOC in the areas of public relations, fundraising, staff planning and marketing.
For more information on the award please go to http://www.interculturalinnovation.org
We would like to thank all of you that donated last year. We raised an incredible $1400 with your help. These funds have been invaluable in providing support to our 10 volunteers in 2012. They have assisted over 30,000 people in Mindanao, e.g. by providing support to disaster victims, working on improving Muslim Christian relations and developing livelihood projects in some of the poorest areas of the country.
Our 7th batch of volunteers have now completed their placements but most are continuing to work in peace and development. It is a sign of the success of our program that 7 of them are continuing to work with their host organization and 2 are working for an International NGO here in North Western Mindanao. We are proud of them all as this is a fantastic achievement.
Several KI Alumni who are working in NGOs in Mindanao have been involved in the disaster response to Typhoon Pablo (International code name Bopha) which devastated parts of Eastern Mindanao in Dec 2012 with over 1000 dead. Their experience in responding with the devastation caused by the previous typhoon that hit North Western Mindanao has proved invaluable. Ki is delighted to see former volunteers working alongside or as staff of international relief agencies such as Red Cross and Save the Children
2013 and beyond
It has been a tough year for KI and again we would like to thank all of our donors whose support has proved vital in enabling us to continue to deliver our program. We will soon begin the process of recruiting our next batch of volunteers (we have already had 25 applicants without even making an announcement!) Please tell your friends about our project, we need their support.
We are now looking to 2013 with fresh excitement and we confident that there will be exciting developments in the coming months that we look forward to sharing with you.
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Lanao del Norte