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Feb 22, 2017

Spontaneous Annual Report

Enjoying one of our many achievements in 2016
Enjoying one of our many achievements in 2016

Dear supporters,

The idea of an Annual Report isn't necessarily the most exciting. Maybe it's a boring but necessary document; maybe it's just a glossy PR exercise to show how great 'we' are. But have you ever come across an entirely spontaneous Annual Report before?

In a team meeting last month, the task was set to list as many positive events as possible from 2016. The idea was to reflect on what we'd achieved, find encouragement in progress made. The outcome was a consolidated list of 67 different things, of varying natures, which happened last year. Then we thought, 'Let's call it our annual report!'

Some of it you know about, like getting a new roof on the cafe, seeing the young people with disabilities grow and develop, educating people on the issues surrounding HIV/AIDS. But other items aren't so talked about, like the small assistance grants to help individuals and families in difficult circumstances, or the growing professionalism of our English teachers.

There were also a few that you might not normally find in a typical annual report, like the new uniforms for our security staff or the chin-up bar to encourage health and fitness!

The outcome of putting this list together was significant encouragement and pride for the team in seeing all that has been done over the last 12 months, and you know that we always love the opportunity to pass on good news!

>>> Read the full annual report for 2016 here! >>>

Thanks for your continuing support for Salem Social Village! Please forgive us if you've already read this story in our Village Leaf email, but if you didn't please sign up for it here to keep up with more news from the Village. 

Another big step forward was the new cafe roof
Another big step forward was the new cafe roof
The current team gathered for the annual photo
The current team gathered for the annual photo

Links:

Nov 28, 2016

We did it!

Work underway on the roof
Work underway on the roof

Dear friends,

We're very excited to be able to tell you that we have been able to get a new roof on the cafe! Salem Social Cafe is now protected for the winter and for many years to come, with a smart new roof that took about two months to install but is now all done. After the big fundraising push over the last 18 months, we're really excited to have finally got it done.

We want to say a big thank you to you for your support in this project - it's not necessarily something that would get the attention of many, but we realise how valuable your support is in things of this nature. And in reality, it is a massive step forward that will affect many many people both now and in the years ahead. We couldn't have done it without your help.

So thanks once more for your investment in the people of Central Asia! We're always welcoming new people to the cafe who are inspired by its design, impressed by its quality and engaged with its mission. Thanks for making that continuing mission possible by safeguarding the cafe's future and helping us help others to help those in need.

With love from everyone at Salem Social Cafe, at the heart of the Social Village!

PS We'll be closing this project in Global Giving shortly, and this will be the last Project Report for the cafe roof project, however our main Salem Social Village project remains active, and we'd love to keep in touch - please sign up for our Village Leaf newsletter if you don't already get it.

Celebrating removing the first sheets of asbestos
Celebrating removing the first sheets of asbestos
Cutting and fitting the new sections
Cutting and fitting the new sections
Seeing the progress from afar
Seeing the progress from afar
Seeing progress from the ground
Seeing progress from the ground
The new roof is on!
The new roof is on!

Links:

Nov 25, 2016

Building on Good Foundations

A new roof for a building on good foundations
A new roof for a building on good foundations

It takes a lot of work to look after a site as big as ours, but it's a wonderful place to operate from, and the buildings themselves are solid. Originally built as a kindergarten in Soviet times, they have extra-solid foundations, designed to protect the little ones in the event of an earthquake. There are still old windows we need to replace, and an old heating system that needs updating, but the foundations are very good.

It's a good metaphor of our work here, and some of what we've been doing over the last few months. In September we celebrated 20 years of continuous charitable activities here in the city since we were registered as an organisation, the experience and reputation from that time still reaping benefits now. We've had more students visiting our AIDS Xperience and learning not just facts but a new attitude towards those with and at risk of HIV/AIDS. We've had opportunities to share our experience and understanding of social entrepreneurship in Kazakhstan with other NGOs around the country. 

Our English courses continue to be very popular, with each semester producing many young people influenced not just with improved English but a new outlook on the world and how to address its issues. Our cafe continues to function well as a popular meeting place for local students, and now with its new roof to safeguard its future as a community resource. Our Care project was able to help a number of families in very difficult circumstances so that their kids could start the new school year.

There's no point putting a nice new roof on a building with unsure foundations, in the same way as inspiring people to help those in need around them needs to start from a solid understanding of how to bring real change over the long-term. Foundations aren't all that 'sexy', but they're vital for a reliable construction.

Thanks for investing in us and all that we're building on those foundations to bring lasting change to Central Asia.

From all the team here.

Assistance enabled new clothes for school
Assistance enabled new clothes for school
Students studying hard and having fun!
Students studying hard and having fun!
Celebrations at the 20 year anniversary
Celebrations at the 20 year anniversary
The old roof starts coming off - everyone
The old roof starts coming off - everyone's happy!
More kids helped to get to school
More kids helped to get to school

Links:

 
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