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Nov 20, 2017

Getting ready to start

We're looking forward to our first donations on this project, so that the first sponsorship can commence for pupils at Salem School. So far there hasn't been any opportunity to provide sponsorship in any form, but we're hoping that some promised donations will arrive soon and give us the chance to provide an education to a future leader of Kazakhstan from a deprived background.

As you can imagine, it's a frustrating period to be in - a live project, interested parties asking for sponsorship, but no funding yet available to give them. However, the opportunity still exists to invest in these young lives, and we're excited about the prospect of providing support to kids whose lives and outlooks will be significantly improved by being able to study at Salem School.

We look forward to being able to report more in three months' time.

Thanks for reading!

Oct 5, 2017

Singing for joy

Nastya with Vlad (centre) from the social club
Nastya with Vlad (centre) from the social club

Watching transformation take place is a very rewarding activity. It's often hard to spot, but you get to learn where to look for it and how to identify it.

Here at Salem Social Village, we're constantly seeking transformation: not so much in the material things, but the inner things - a new awareness arriving, a new way of thinking encountered, a new breakthrough in fighting discriminatory attitudes, a new understanding of what's truly important in life. And so when we see those little flickers of transformation at work, we like to share the good news!

Recently we enjoyed hearing Nastya's story - a talented singer, she happened to come across our social club for people with disabilities. But rather than being shocked or turned off, as many here might be, she was inspired as she realised that she had something to contribute; and she did.

Her mini-concerts for the social club were hugely appreciated by all those who attend, but it was clear that the lights had come on for her through this experience too. "I really love bringing joy to these wonderful people and sharing something of my heart," she told us. "It’s good to give!"

Meanwhile, a new academic year has begun, with new challenges and new opportunities. We were able to help a number of families for whom this is a difficult and uncomfortably expensive time of year, whilst also explaining our new Critical Thinking course, another place where lights are regularly coming on for people. There was also a footballing camp to teach young players the importance of fair play, and another chance to explore our particular approach with the wider charitable sector here.

So a busy few months, but when there's transformation happening all around, there are always reasons to sing for joy.

Thanks for supporting us in making it all happen!

The football camp training in full swing
The football camp training in full swing
Some of the enthusiastic young trainees
Some of the enthusiastic young trainees
Presenting much-needed school supplies
Presenting much-needed school supplies
Explaining what a Critical Thinking course means
Explaining what a Critical Thinking course means
Another chance to discuss social entrepreneurship
Another chance to discuss social entrepreneurship

Links:

Jul 24, 2017

The gift of movement

One wheelchair delivered to a grateful household
One wheelchair delivered to a grateful household

The man lay paralyzed in his bed, groaning incoherently. He had lost almost all movement in his body, and his wife explained that his groans were all he could do to thank us. Yet it was clear that he, along with his wife, was immensely grateful for the wheelchair we had brought for him.

But whilst he was desperately trying to thank us for the gift, we were more interested in thanking this wonderful family for their shining example of loyalty to one another through the hardest of times, showing the kind of commitment in the face of such difficulties that is rarely seen here.

And of course, alongside the joy of giving, of being able to do just a bit to help, we are also very grateful to the donors of the wheelchairs who enabled us to pass on this very special gift of movement.

Thanks to the generosity of Medline Industries, we've been able to distribute a number of high quality wheelchairs to grateful recipients in the city over the last few months. You can read more on our website, but we wanted to take this chance to say thank you for supporting Salem Social Village and the people of Shymkent. We're making a difference.

And another one
And another one
This one was a slightly different situation
This one was a slightly different situation
Someone else we helped - with a scholarship
Someone else we helped - with a scholarship
Kids having fun after their trip to the theatre
Kids having fun after their trip to the theatre
Preview of our new English course curriculum
Preview of our new English course curriculum

Links:

 
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