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May 5, 2015

You are starting to turn the tide

Since the uploading of this project three months ago you have donated the amazing figure of 1230$ to Mah Di’s Orphanage. Significant impact is on the way! Since we still have to receive the money we will report on one of the last visits to the orphanage, when we accompanied a donor, a friend of Reach Out who was visiting the country. From there we expect you to get a better picture on how your donations will impact the orphanage and on how it works itself.

Can a middle-aged woman from one of the richest countries in the world visit a Cameroonian Orphanage in strong need of the most basic supplies for the first time of her life and conclude that “the kids are fine”?

Yes she can, and that is what happened. This is precisely the essence of Mah Di’s Orphanage and of Mah Diana herself. A strong woman that is almost single-handedly (with the precious collaboration of volunteer/workers and the oldest children of the orphanage) raising more than 40 children and doing it so with impressive results.

Mah Di’s is about solidarity, about family, about every one doing his part, it is not rare to see a little child cheerfully washing the dishes, to see how each one of them take on more responsibilities and care for those younger as they age till they reach the point of Ivan, a full grown man of 18 years old who is undergoing technical education and is taking care of the different Income Generating Activities of the Orphanage such as the poultry and the piggery.

In Mah Di’s common problems among orphans such as lack of confidence or coexistence problems are rare, if not non-existent. We don’t believe in magic solutions and we imagine that such problems are possible, but Diana’s style of lax and at the same time disciplined education continues to impress us an orphanage in so much need can be even used to gather best practices. You can be sure that will money will be put on the best hands, with amazing potential for impact.

Our first intervention in a month’s time will buy bunk beds, we are addressing first this need as the orphanage hardly finds such capital and kids continue to sleep three in one bed while teenagers continue to sleep in a matrass on the floor. This donor assisted us to buy two new beds and some feeding expenses and medicine, your donation will buy another 5 beds and more food. We hope you find your money well spent, and that you could see how grateful the children and Madame Diane are to us, a gratitude that we remind them should be directed to you.

every one collaborates
every one collaborates
Madame Diane
Madame Diane
Teenagers' room. Your donation will change this.
Teenagers' room. Your donation will change this.
Thank You!
Thank You!
Apr 10, 2015

The start of a new semester thanks to you

Rahim in UB campus
Rahim in UB campus

Through your donations and the Orphanage support, Rahim has been able to continue to receive educational support. He continues to attend to some basic needs like payment of handouts in school, electricity bills and feeding.

Last week we went down to University of Buea to interview him to follow up on his situation. His grades have not been perfect and he will have to write again a few subjects, which is probably connected to his constant struggle to manage with the few resources we are providing for him, most days he eats the same thing, rice and tomato. He struggles to get through small payments (handouts, 2 dollars) and subsists on less than 40 dollars a month, slightly above the 1 dollar a day figure.

This are some of the contents of that interview:

What are your perspectives for the future, what would you like to be doing after your degree?

After getting my degree on Geography if I can save enough money I hope I can continue to a Master’s Degree. I would like to specialize myself on Urban Town Planning.

Whatever occupation I have I will have to assist my brothers and sisters at the orphanage as much as I can, at least to the point that every child there should have something going. I will always remain connected to my home.

What is your favorite thing about life as a student in UB?

The atmosphere is nice and it’s serious. The lecturers are serious. Especially on exam times everything is hard work.

What is the hardest part of life as a student in UB?

The issue of my feeding, as our schedule can run very long going back to the house and cooking late at night is exhausting, you get to the end of the day exhausted, especially on Mondays and Tuesdays. I don’t eat outside I cannot afford it. Every day I eat my rice and tomato.

How is your normal day-to-day life? What do you do on your leisure times?

Well we don’t really get much time, I have class from Monday to Saturday, on Sunday I prepare for next week lectures.

Do you keep in close contact with the orphanage? What can you tell us about them?

They have a problem right now as the roof is leaking and they need to fix it. They are renting farms to support themselves. There are 26 kids, 5 of them around my age the majority of them from 1 to 12 years old.

What would you like to say to the people who are supporting you?

God will bless all of them and he is seeing the support and will not leave them empty

I’m happy, all of you people have done so much, those donating and those in the office, and I’ll work hard to bring results to present.

In front of Social Managment Sciences faculty
In front of Social Managment Sciences faculty
Mar 18, 2015

We keep on improving thanks to your support

Mercy, in charge of collecting payments
Mercy, in charge of collecting payments

Dear Donors,

These last months had brought some hard to face news, and we don’t want to hide them from you. Claudine, the star of our program, main picture in the globalgiving page, fell seriously sick, her legs were paralyzed, the saloon was closed for months and all her efforts and progress seemed to be washed down by the difficulties of life. Luckily a few weeks ago she could re-open again, in a new location; we will soon re-assess the situation.

This is the time where we will start collecting the loans back from the newest group of girls in Tole after a three months period of grace. We have charged this task upon them. Mercy, one of the beneficiaries, is relied to be collecting the money for us. We did not need to remind them, in fact we have been receiving calls from them (Mae, portrayed in the last report, called myself personally) asking us when were we coming to collect.

Our team also met with the Adult Literacy students in Buea Town and Bumaka, the classes are targeted for the Muslim community as it is normal among the Mbororo ethnicity that women remain illiterate. We had been asked to try and come out with a fundraise strategy for the program, as it has been running for a lot of time but due to donor withdrawal even the transport costs of the volunteers were in danger. It was then that the idea of joining both programs came together. Most of the girls that meet every Monday and Wednesday to learn how to write, read and even speak English would qualify for one of our grants. Actually the platform of weekly classes will allow us to keep better track on their business management and bookkeeping skills, their proven capacity for hard work and progress is also inspiring to work with. So the partnership between these two programs seemed only natural.

I want to close with another Mercy, this one from Bakweri Town,he started selling “pot” (that is selling little pieces of meat with spices on a cooking pot and going around the street selling them for 50CFA, 10 cent of dollar, a piece). She is one of our last beneficiaries and she is supporting her family on her own, paying for her sister's education and the needs of her child, only with the proceeds from the business. She has a keen eye for business, a good recipe and the determination to be walking all day, holding the pot on her head. She has been making consistent profit (around 3000 francs a day, 6 dollars, of profit, overall sales being 30, at 10 cents a piece!). Her next step will be a fridge that will protect her from the fluctuating prices of meat, improving her profits by around 2 dollars a day.

So this is the next step, giving her and a selected group of girls like her the tools for a big leap towards the end of poverty. We know that you will continue to be with them along the journey.

Thank you again, so many times we are being thanked by the girls and we know that it’s to you that they should be thankful. We explain then that it is not thanks to us, but to normal people like them with better opportunities and a great heart, that help came through.

We have to add also that today is Bonus Day and any donation to this project will be matched by Globalgiving by 30%, you have given so much, we can only ask you to consider sharing this information among friends and family, as we know you care about the project and the girls.

P.D: Reports for the microprojects related to this project have also been published, you can find them here:

Hairdressing with Becky and Itsa: http://www.globalgiving.org/microprojects/build-two-hair-saloons-with-itsa-and-becky/

Tailoring with Aba: http://www.globalgiving.org/microprojects/build-a-tailoring-business-with-aba/

Mercy's table shop
Mercy's table shop
One of the students of the literacy classes
One of the students of the literacy classes
Volunteer, trainer and Aba.Tailoring project.
Volunteer, trainer and Aba.Tailoring project.
 
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