Feb 13, 2019

GFC Host's Youth Leadership Council Webinar

Our webinar in action!
Our webinar in action!

On February 12th, GFC hosted a webinar introducing our founding members of the new youth leadership council. Antonina, Mete, Nasra and Sasha all shared their views on a range of subjects from the importance in investing in children and youth to the vital role funders like GFC make to their organisations.

Over 30 GFC supporters tuned in for the webinar and posted some brilliant questions for our four members. Ranging from balancing youth leadership whilst gaining wisdom and experience from older generations, to how the youth leadership council is going to work within GFC going forward to volunteering to join the council!

During the webinar, council member and activist Nasra spoke about how, no matter how many times young people are pushed back, they come back - bigger and stronger than ever. "As a young person, you have to find that inner strength - I think that's why we push all the time - we have to be strong in these kind of situations where people are always trying to silence you," she added.

Our audience engaged fully in the presentation and offered some words of wisdom throughout, which was gratefully received by us all here at GFC.

Reflecting on how the webinar went, Mete shared: "Yesterday's call reaffirmed why I joined the GFC youth leadership council, which was to connect with social innovators from across the globe, passionate about making changes to their own communities."

Sasha was also very happy after the call: "I was super pumped after the session yesterday because it gave me a chance to both remind myself why I decided to join the council, as well as learn a little bit more about my colleagues. I can't wait to start working with a bunch of extremely talented and experienced individuals. I feel like I'm learning so much for my own development, and the future."

We will be sharing a recording of the webinar in due course - please get in touch with GFC should you wish to get a copy. We would also love to hear from young people if you are interested in joining our council.  

Jan 8, 2019

Final report

Guatemala’s catastrophic eruption of the Volcan de Fuego in July of 2018 left an approximately 165 people dead and thousands of others homeless. The aftermath of this natural disaster affected more than 1.7 million people in three communities: El Rodeo, Acatenango, and Escuintla.

Today, hundreds of people in these three communities continue to lack basic goods and services, especially low-income and economically vulnerable households. In addition, many survivors suffer from psychological and emotional repercussions as a result from their own experiences and the loss of their loved ones.

As our supporters will know, in the wake of this tragedy, Global Giving sent funds to a civil society organization (CSO) in Guatemala that was actively working to not only provide basic goods, such as food, water, and shelter, but also psychosocial counseling for survivors. The Asociacion Generando Equidad, Liderazgo, y Oportunidades, commonly known as ASOGEN, had years of experience providing gender equity training in the community of El Rodeo, but sought to expand its services when calamity struck the lives of thousands and thousands of Guatemalans.

In the last few months, ASOGEN has opened a new facility that serves distinct functions and roles for the CSO. Thanks to kind contributions of Global Giving and the help of volunteers, ASOGEN uses this space to assemble baskets of food, medicine, and hygiene supplies. Once the baskets are ready, groups of ASOGEN staff and volunteers distribute them to the calamity-affected households.

In addition, ASOGEN utilizes this new facility to host grief counseling and life skills sessions aimed for survivors to not only cope with their grief, but also—and more importantly—to envision a better future and design a concrete plan to accomplish their goals. One adolescent girl, recently said, “I am so thankful and grateful for these sessions, which have helped think of other things than the tragedy I experienced.”

Another young boy said, “I did not know how traumatized I was by the incident. When the volcano exploded, I was working outside of my community and there was a period of time that I could not contact my family. For a moment, I really thought they had all passed away. When I was finally able to get home, I was overjoyed to learn they were all alive and safe. In the first grief session, I realized that one moment where I thought I had lost my family continues to be a source of anxiety and depression.”

Overall, ASOGEN has provided more than 170 male and female youth with seven psychosocial counselling sessions and hosted three community-wide workshops.

With additional funding in November 2018 from Global Giving, ASOGEN launched a project with the objective to provide seed capital, business classes, high school scholarships, and vocational courses to further enable participants to have a positive future following this disaster. A monitoring and evaluation plan was also designed to track participant’s success with the project.

ASOGEN are very grateful for the continued support and investment from Global Giving.

Nov 15, 2018

Youth council members get together in London

Youth Council member, Sasha
Youth Council member, Sasha

Last month, three of our youth council members got together to discuss how the council can begin to influence governance and leadership at Global Fund for Children, whilst we continue to fundraise for the council.

Sasha, Nasra and Mete met up in Central London to discuss how they felt the council should be shaped, how they can add value to the organisation and what they may need to do to ensure our Global Giving campaign is successful.

Sasha sent this update: 

When Mete, Nasra, and I met we had a very productive discussion regarding the “infrastructural” basics of the Youth Council. As alike thinking individuals, we have managed to agree on several important points. First, about the role of the Youth Council. Ideally, we would prefer to be able to shape (within limits, of course) the politics of the board of trustees. We do believe, that we may be able to find something which has been missed, as young people ourselves. We also do believe that ground work is essential — that we need to speak with some of our grassroots partners to be able to indentify missing spots and opportunities. Logistically, we established that a quarterly meeting should be sufficient in order to proceed with work; and use online methods to keep in touch regularly.

We are looking forward to making the most of upcoming Giving Tuesday and raising further funds for this essential work - 2019 looks set to be an awesome year, bringing youth into the governance of GFC! Keep an eye out for further updates via our page. Thank you, once again, for being a donor to this work.

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