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Sep 12, 2014

News about the girls and Thank you

stephanie signing thelma into school of the Deaf
stephanie signing thelma into school of the Deaf

Dear donors of the KGA project,

A lot has been happening since our last report.

We provided small grants to the latest small group of girls based in Tole. Claudine could get a very nice hair dryer and her hair-dressing saloon is improving every day, Comfort is having both a palm wine bar and a table shop business that she manages at the same time and we also gave a second chance to Glory, because she just gave birth to twins when she started in the program and could not cope with that(and the costs involved) and starting a new business. She is now selling Gateau, a kind of sweet bread typical of Cameroon, and we check up on her regularly.

We have been following up with them and also other, interviewing and assisting young women in Bakwery town, Bumaka and of course Tole.

Just checking on their bookkeeping and listening to their business ideas have made some of them progress a lot, and we keep learning from them. It is exciting to see how they sustain their families and dream of bigger enterprises. This kind of practice helps open them up and help us get a better picture of their situation. Also sometimes they bring new problems to us.

This is how we got to know about Thelma case, the deaf daughter of one of our beneficiaries, who was not learning sign language nor going to any kind of school. We could address this problem before she is too old; she finally started receiving an education in an adequate school. We made a small micro project about it in globalgiving (http://www.globalgiving.org/microprojects/send-thelma-to-school/), because Thelma is at school for a period of grace conceded to us by Buea School of the Deaf, but we still have to find sponsors for her. Anyway you can say that it is thanks to all of you that that girl has discovered and given an opportunity to grow, so be proud.

Last 15th of July Bonus Day was a success thanks to our donors and we received 2990$. Adding to that a fundraising campaign took place during the month of August that reported additional 1378$. That was thanks to Melanie Harbinson, former volunteer of Reach Out. None of this money is yet in Reach Out office, and we are still planning on how we will spend it, but we will do it slowly since we can’t count on such two extraordinary events to keep happening so often.

Next steps include slowly and carefully augmenting the number of girls reached out by the program, and small trainings on income generating activities, according to the needs of both old and new beneficiaries.

Thank you for all that you have done for them.

Comfort in her small bar
Comfort in her small bar
Jul 16, 2014

7 July visit to Tole

group picture
group picture

On Monday 7th of July, a group of volunteers from REO went to Tole to conduct interviews with some of the beneficiaries. The main objective was to see if the businesses we already had in the program kept working and what they required next from us.

Most of the girls in Tole had good stories to show up for their business. Almost all of them are making a profit and improving every month. But we have to keep in mind that this profit can be small and even though they are progressing they might still lack resources for very important things. Particularly school fees. There is a lot of work to do yet and after picking up the data the volunteers in REO agreed to organize individual 1on1 meetings where the volunteer goes over knowledge that might not have been sufficiently comprehended during the workshops and looks at the whole business itself in order to learn and share good practices.

We agreed to help the two most successful businesses directly with economic grants, since they have gained our trust several times and the rest of them with the materials they required the most.

We would like to expand to more girls since Toule has 6175 people, and we are setting up meetings with a new group of around 10 beneficiaries that might be exactly what we are looking for.

I  could interview two of the beneficiaries, Stephanie and Claudine. Stephanie went from selling one basket of okro(local product) and pepper we gave her to four tomato baskets (which she finds more profitable) and one of okro and pepper on her own, she's looking to expand her business to a small table shop that could be set up the days that she does not go to the market and she feels now independent and empowered, and very grateful that she can give her child food and education.

Claudine could open a hairdressing business in the neighborhood after we gave her some of the materials and the business is now growing steadily, she's looking to improve her training so she can offer more things, like nail decoration services. She feels now as a source of support to her family and often helps economically other members, while before the program she was the one asking them for help. 

Today is Partner Reward Day and we will receive 40% extra from globalgiving for every donation we get. This could be the perfect opportunity to push for developing a virtuous circle in Tole. Every new empowered girl is a wealthier client to some of them, a rock for their families and an example for all.

You have given us so much already that we can't ask for more. We would be more than happy if you could just promote the program during this day, explaining it to your acquintances or sharing the globalgiving link in your social media accounts.

THANK YOU

Jun 9, 2014

Progress Report

Beneficiaries after training on Book Keeping
Beneficiaries after training on Book Keeping

Dear Donors,
On the path to success, day after day, the story is changing for the best. And in the lips of our beneficiaries, the praises are endless. Things will never be the same again in the lives of our beneficiaries thanks to your support.
With the positive results revealed by the evaluation on project impact for the support to 36 girls on different business activities, the last three months was a period to scale up the businesses of the different previous beneficiaries while coaching them on business skills and strategies to get them ready for the challenges of moving gradually from a small business to a much bigger business initiative.
Thus, after follow up visits to the beneficiaries’ business sites, a coaching exercise was organized on Basic Book Keeping and Effective Groups. The participation and interest expressed by beneficiaries during the coaching exercise was a motivation to provide outstanding girls with additional capital to expand their business initiatives.
The beneficiary’s appraisal has often been a motivation for Reach Out staff to do more. Their stories are often very touching and testimonies to a positive twist on their lives, their immediate family and the community at large.
Testimonies from Beneficiaries
Stephanie : “I have expanded my pepper business to include tomatoes and other vegetables. I can now go to neighboring towns to sell my goods”

Expina: “Buying medications for my son when need be is no longer a challenge for me. I can afford that and more for him, thanks to my fish business”

Vastina: “Thanks to the money I raised from my call box business, I was able to assist my family in giving my father a befitting burial”

Extending a hand to the needy
Elizabeth, Secretary of the Unity Sisters (Group): “With profit made from our funeral decor and chair rental business, we bought some items such as soap and firewood which we offered to a visually impaired lady and her two sons who are also visually impaired”
Expect our next report in three months as we assure you that your donations are creating an impact in the lives of our beneficiaries.

Secretary of Group expresses satisfaction
Secretary of Group expresses satisfaction
Beneficiary advancing in her hair dressing busines
Beneficiary advancing in her hair dressing busines
Beneficiary with a client
Beneficiary with a client
Beneficiary with her call box business
Beneficiary with her call box business
 
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