Another three months later and we cannot believe how much YOU have made possible. We are honored to be the only organization in Ecuador training and empowering nonprofits and their leaders! We are proud of the progress seen thus far in the Community Assistance Program (CAP) and we are excited to continue seeing it grow.
As many of you know, the CAP program works with nonprofits across the Azuay province and beyond. We offer educational workshops, motivational dialogues, networking events, and mentoring hours for nonprofits who want to work on themselves and G R O W as an organization. While our programs are open to any and all nonprofits, the sponsored full-time members of the program are OSSO, NOVA, CETAP-Lucy, Kallpa Warmi, and OSSO.
How does the program work for members? Each of these organizations is required to participate in every activity, follow up with mentoring hours to ensure that the lessons learned are being put to work, and be evaluated quarterly.
So what have we been up to lately?
In September we hosted our second annual nonprofit conference, Somos el Cambio (We are the Changemakers)! We opened up this opportunity to the wider community in order to bring nonprofit leaders, entrepreneurs, students, and businesses together! The workshops focused on pressing issues in communications and marketing. Often times we forget that nonprofits operate just the same as any business, and thus require many of the same skills! The area of marketing and communications is one area where participants can share information and skills. We were very lucky to have had 5 nationally renowned experts join us as speakers for this day of learning and motivation!
We also hosted our third nonprofit networking event of the year, where leaders and activists can come together to connect and share advice or lessons learned. We love to see our fellow leaders socialize with one another and find new ways to connect. Our philosophy is to collaborate - not compete - with other nonprofits!
Most recently, we hosted a 4-hour workshop on Program Design and Evaluation. This gave us an opportunity to share important lessons on how to track an organization's progress, impact, and effectiveness of programs. We were delighted to have 5 local organizations participate.
We would like to send a heart felt thank you to YOU - our Hearts of Gold family - for maintaining your commitment to this project.
As always, stay tuned for more info!
We are excited to report continued progress of the Community Assistance Program (CAP)! Thanks to your support, over twenty local nonprofits are receiving the education and training they need to succeed and continue their critical and heartfelt services.
We continue to work with 5 members in the CAP who are not only receiving workshops and dialogue sessions, but also private mentoring hours and specialized evaluations to track their progress. These 5 member organizations include the OSSO orphanage, the women’s group Kallpa Warmi, CETAP-Lucy, NOVA Educational Center, and Fundacion El Arenal.
We are optimistic and excited about the progress of each organization! As CETAP-Lucy moves toward their 10-year anniversary, we are helping them strengthen their donor communications. With NOVA we are focusing on marketing strategies such as creating a website and using online registration/evaluation forms. With OSSO we are working on alternative fundraising strategies and how to optimize connections in the community for in-kind donations and services for their children. Likewise with El Arenal we are working with local donors to sponsor more children and provide in-kind donations. With Kallpa Warmi we are using their needs assessment to provide extra training opportunities for the women to manage their projects in entrepreneurship.
In order for more of you - our supporters - to get to know these partners, we have coordinated several open houses over the last few months at NOVA, OSSO, and Kallpa Warmi! If you did not get a chance to make it, please send us a message! We would love for you to see the fabulous work they are doing!
We have also been busy with many training opportunities over the last few months! July was “Fundraising” month where we offered 4 workshops on how to be more effective in fundraising and how to create relationships with donors. These 12 hours of workshops are an investment in the future of each organization and the services they offer to at-risk and disabled children, orphans, women, and communities.
As of August we are now in “vacations” period in Ecuador and preparing fantastic projects for the school year! Upcoming projects include our third nonprofit networking event of the year AND our 2nd Annual Somos el Cambio Seminar in September! We are also conducting the quarterly progress-tracking evaluations with each CAP member which helps to see how each partner is advancing and helps us to continue improving the CAP program.
Thanks to each and everyone of you, this CAP program has been a success. It is the only program of its kind providing capacity building for Ecuadorian nonprofits - all thanks to YOUR support.
E D U C A T E local nonprofits / E M P O W E R their leaders, C O N N E C T social initiatives.
It’s been over a year since we’ve launched this campaign, and you’ve helped us reach over $25,000 to fund our capacity building work in Ecuador! That is a HUGE success! We are delighted to continue reporting great news and updates with our work that YOU make possible!
We would like to continue to share with you exactly what we have been doing in this Community Assistance Program (CAP) and how YOUR support is making a long-term impact on nonprofit services in Ecuador!
With much pride, CETAP-Lucy, Fundación El Arenal, NOVA Education Center, and the OSSO Orphanage are sponsored members in the CAP. And thanks to the success of our women’s empowerment campaign, Mírame, a new women’s group from the rural town Sayusi will join as a member this quarter (stay tuned for more info!).
What does it exactly mean that a nonprofit is a “member” in the CAP? We’re glad you asked! Each member receives all workshops and dialogues at no cost, giving them an opportunity for 130+ hours of classroom time per year to work on technical skills in nonprofit management as well as personal development. On top of that, these nonprofits are receiving quarterly evaluations to review their progress and set goals, and are engaged in private mentoring hours with Hearts of Gold staff and field experts so they can target areas of improvement and becomes stronger, more sustainable organizations!
While this work may not sound “sexy”, it is the most strategic way to know that these nonprofits and their leaders continue to serve their communities - children, families, women, orphans, youth with special needs - and continue providing critical services that these populations depend upon!
Our calendar has been full this past quarter with inspiring, educational programs designed for Ecuadorian nonprofits! To give you a sneak peak:
Thanks to your support, we’ve been very busy! We’re also working with the Universidad de Cuenca and hosting 2 interns in Communication and Public Relations, which will help us to communicate better in the local community and spread the word about our work! We co-hosted an event for International Women’s Day where local women read their poetry with WED Ecuador and Asociación Rafalex. And, we are working with the local Municipality government on how we can work together and train even more nonprofits in Azuay!
Itching to learn more? Don’t forget to check out our 2017 Annual Report which highlights all of our work in 2017, and this graphic which highlights our work from January to March of 2018!!
We would like to express our gratitude to you, our Hearts of Gold family, for believing in us and being committed to this work in Ecuador.
Greetings from Hearts of Gold! We would like to give a special shout out and give our thanks to YOU, the true hearts behind Hearts of Gold, for allowing us to sustain our work into another year! We are so excited to report the exciting development and growth of the Community Assistance Program (CAP)!
Here is where your worthy contributions have been put to work:
We have officially closed the Pilot Year of the CAP program, and have been working hard to make it even better in its second year. Our quarterly evaluations and mentoring sessions with our local partners have helped us to tailor the program so that it can serve our local partners and their leaders on an even deeper level!
We are narrowing down our education areas from 8 to 6, in response to our members’ feedback about focusing on critical themes:
We are also working to restructure the scholarship aspect of the CAP so that more nonprofits can receive these services at no cost. In our pilot year of the CAP, you helped us fund 3 partners, and we aim to double that number in 2018!
On that note, we are delighted to announce our newest member of the CAP, the orphanage “OSSO.” Thanks to our corporate sponsor Global Wellness Ecuador, OSSO will be receiving a scholarship to the CAP program with an intensified curriculum to help them grow and reach their goals! OSSO is an orphanage outside the city of Cuenca that serves 22 children with disabilities, providing them with full care including all medical needs, therapies, education, and daily support. OSSO’s leaders Lorena and Rodrigo have been running the organization since 2007, and are very excited for this opportunity to take their nonprofit to the next level!
Our work doesn’t end there! Hearts of Gold wants to continue to build deeper relations with the local community - thus we are moving forward with our 5-year contract with the Universidad de Cuenca and working to build partnerships for an internship program, collaboration with professors and their expertise, and use of their spaces for workshops and events!
Our calendar for 2018 is filling up fast! We are in the process of preparing 25 workshops sessions, 7 dialogues, and 4 never seen before networking events for nonprofit leaders that will impact thousands in Ecuador.
We hosted our first networking event of the year in January, bringing together 19 leaders from 13 local Ecuadorian nonprofits. These events not only help leaders to build connections and learn from one another, but also feel supported when our fields of work can be isolating and emotionally challenging. Our colleague from FUPEC (Families United for Cancer Patients) shared the following testimonial at our last event:
Our last bit of news (for now) is that the Leadership Class of 2018 have officially been selected! This year we will have 18 leaders from 13 nonprofits join us for a 5-day Leadership Training! Hearts of Gold was selected for the 2nd year in a row to host and coordinate this training by the European Libre Foundation due to our role as a leader in the local nonprofit community. We are proud to be able to bring together such inspiring leaders serving women, children, elderly, dogs, individuals with cancer and their families, immigrants, impoverished communities, and more in this year’s Leadership Class of 2018!
Keep an eye out this year for a new women's empowerment project that we have been developing! Mírame (direct translation: watch me) is a program that will focus specifically on empowering and supporting female community leaders - women who have a vision to change their world, but have been left marginalized in a society with little support. This project has grown from the CAP and supporting female nonprofit leaders, and will now be able to serve Ecuadorian women at large. Mírame will support women through an empowerment and self-development program, along with extra support via education and leadership to encourage their success!
We would like to sincerely thank you for investing in Hearts of Gold and the Community Assistance Program. You keep our heart beating. It is thanks to you that we have good news to report, and it is thanks to you that we can continue to serve our community - nonprofits and their leaders - in order to help them reach their goals and impact the lives of thousands.
From our hearts to yours,
The Hearts of Gold Team - Kelly, Maria Jose, and Colleen
Looking back on 2017, we are blown away by the support we have received. Even more so, we are shocked and humbled by the impact that our programs have made in Ecuador, all thanks to YOUR commitment.
Since the "Make Nonprofit History in Ecuador" campaign was launched in March 2017, Hearts of Gold has been able to...
Aside from the numbers, Hearts of Gold has been able to leverage opportunities for collaboration, for the first time ever working with the Chamber of Commerce of Cuenca and, with much excitement, we have signed a 5-year contract with the University of Cuenca which will support the CAP program, investigation and research, and give our partners access to abundant resources through specialized projects. We have been able to apply for and gift a $10,000 grant to one of our CAP participants, Proyecto Saman, which will resolve the living situation of four families that were victims of the 2016 earthquake through 2 new homes and 2 home repairs.
Thanks to your support, we unveiled our first annual nonprofit conference entitled "Somos el Cambio" ("We are the Changemakers"), which brought together 22 nonprofit and business professionals for a full-day of learning and networking. We offered 4 workshops focused in the theme of communication, fostering a primary weakness area for the majority of our nonprofit partners, and for the first time ever integrating the nonprofit and business community in a professional setting.
Our journey together to Make Nonprofit History in Ecuador has only just begun. We are excited to unveil new and improved programs and services in our CAP program in 2018, providing more access to even more nonrprofits in Ecuador. We are filled with gratitude that you are able to accompany us on this journey of growth as we become a pioneer for Ecuadorian nonprofits and truly break ground to build stronger, more sustainable leaders and nonprofits in Ecuador.
This is history in the making.
You are ambassadors for change.
Together, we are a force to be reckoned with.
We hope that you can join us this #GivingTuesday, Tuesday November 26 as we act #HeartToHeart and prepare even more impactful, life-changing projects in the CAP Program in 2018, as we compete for stellar bonus prizes on the Global Giving platform, along with a generous $2,000 in matching from the President of our Board, Natasha Verkley. Keep your eyes out for #GivingTuesday at 12AM.
Thank you for believing in us and for maintaining your commitment to this important work.
From our hearts to yours,
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