Since our last report, the Dream Home passed the 7 months old milestone.
Wow - the Dream Home has now been open for 7 months. This would NOT have been possible without your support - as taking care of orphans requires on-going support. A very special "thank you" to each and every one of you who have helped us care for these special, deserving kids. Your suggestions and support have been most encouraging.
Because of your support, we have together now been taking care of 22 kids in the Dream Home for over 7 months. All 22 children are going to school - save one who is only 2 years old. The kids have been involved in a variety of activities / games. They are really working hard to make good grades in school. We are very proud of Geraldine who took 3rd position in her class. Schools just closed for the semester and they are enjoying a brief break.
Thanks to YOU - your kids at the Dream Home are not having to deal with this. Your support is making a HUGE difference.
This holiday season is a time where families and friends gather together and spend time with each other. At the Dream Home, we are planning to celebrate the season (as is customary in Sierra Leone) by holding a Christmas party for the kids. We are planning to make this season special for them. We want this to be a time of JOY for them. We do not want this to be a time of regret - where they miss their families.
Could you please join us in making Christmas special for your kids at the Dream Home? Now is an ideal time to make a gift towards the Dream Home as your donations towards this project will be matched at 100% - but only for a limited time. The matching campaign will be closing when funds run out or on December 31st (in under 2 weeks), whichever comes first.
Thanks for being part of the Dream Home family! We wish you a joy-filled season with your family and friends.
We delight in the opportunity to reconnect with you.
This update comes to you with dual emotions.
On one hand, Sunday, September 13th marked 1 year anniversary of the passing away of Ruth. Ruth, a nurse, was actively involved in our Ebola sensitization campaigns. After Ruth contracted Ebola at work, she and her husband passed away. Geraldine and Dorcas, her daughters, live in the Dream Home. On this 1 year anniversary of Ruth’s passing away, Geraldine and Dorcas received encouragement and moral support from a wide range of people.
I had the opportunity to chat with Geraldine and Dorcas on the phone. We briefly discussed the upcoming anniversary of her mother's death. I offered a word of encouragement to them - letting them know that their future would be better - would be colorful and bright. I encouraged them to keep doing their best at school and focus on their studies.
On the other hand, we have so much to be thankful for. Geraldine and Dorcas asked me to express their gratitude to each of YOU who have helped support them and the 20 other kids in the Dream Home. Thanks to your support, we have been taking care of them since their parents passed away and also the other kids in the Dream Home since May this year.
We are also very thankful for Aisha, one of the kids at the Dream Home. She is very friendly and helps to take care of the younger kids. In this video she expresses her appreciation to you all for your support. In this video Aisha, an orphan at the Dream Home for Ebola orphans says thanks for the support. She explains that they are well fed and have resumed school.
YOU made this happen! Thank you so much for your continued support.
We are super excited to bring you this progress update. Since our last report, 22 orphans have taken residence in the Dream Home. The number of new Ebola cases continues to decline and the government of Sierra Leone is working hard to bring an end to this crisis.
According to a published report, over there are over 3000 Ebola orphans who lost BOTH parents. We are currently taking care of 22 orphans. This means that there are hundreds and hundreds of orphans who need help. We know from experience because we have had to turn away many kids - as we are at capacity now.
Going forward, our efforts and this project are going to be focused primarily on post-Ebola activities - taking care of Ebola orphans. With this in mind, we have set up a special website available here.
The kids have been involved in a wide range of activities. The BBC Media Action team visited the Dream Home and you can listen to the interview here - BBC Media Action Visits Develop Africa's Dream Home. In the interview, the kids discuss how they are happy with life at the home and learning at school. They kids have received gifts and toys from several groups. On June 16th, they took part in activities celebrating the Day of the African Child.
Through YOUR support we have provided solar lights to help them study at night. Your donations are helping to meet their everyday needs - from food, clothing, medical care etc.
We would like to invite YOU to take the next step by signing up for a recurring donation for $20 or more. "It takes a village to raise a child". We would like to invite you to join The Dream Home Village. This will help us plan and provide consistent care.
Save The Date: On July 15th, starting at 9:00 am Eastern US Time, while matching funds are available, donations to this project on GlobalGiving USA and GlobalGiving UK will be matched at 50%.
Additionally, If you also have not yet donated to this Ebola project during the Ebola matching campaign, then we will get an additional 100% match (up to $1,000) from the Ebola matching fund. This will be a total of 150% match!
In other words, this would be an ideal time to make your donation go even further. Your $50 donation will go towards providing scholarships for these deserving kids.
Thanks to YOU and a grant from GlobalGiving, the new Develop Africa Orphanage is almost complete - see photos. We are putting the finishing touches to the renovation.
We are super excited as this new orphanage - called the Develop Africa Dream Home - will be complete by the end of April. We are sooo very excited - as we will now be able to house and take care of up to 24 Ebola orphans.
We hope to restore the dreams and hopes of these kids - who have lost their parents through Ebola. What better way to be a blessing to humanity!
All this would not have been possible without your support. YOU helped make this happen and we are so grateful to you.
We will be adding special inspirational posters to the rooms - see the photos for a couple example - held by the kids outside the building.
As we prepare to launch, we would like to ask you - how would you like to be involved? We welcome your suggestions in taking care of these orphans. What should we be sure to remember and do? Let us know - we are eager to hear from you.
Thanks to YOUR support, we have made another shipment of personal protective equipment (PPE) to Sierra Leone. In February, we delivered a very large box of PPE containing primarily coveralls to Dr. Brima Kargbo at the Ministry of Health and Sanitation. See photos available with this report.
After a drop, unfortunately, it is reported that Ebola outbreaks are on the rise again since January.
The International SOS stated in their March 4, 2015 update: "Although Ebola cases were declining rapidly in December and early in the new year, a rise occurred in the final week of January. More districts reported newly-confirmed cases. Most of the new cases were not in registered contacts. WHO labeled transmission "widespread" as February began."
The National Ebola Response Centre (NERC) in Sierra Leone reported in their March 2, 2015 "Ebola Outbreak Updates" that there were 17 new confirmed cases in Sierra Leone. There are 8,370 cumulative confirmed cases and 3,180 cumulative deaths.
Your on-going support is still vitally needed in providing protective equipment for health workers. This keeps them safe from contracting Ebola while they help to eradicate this disease.
Thank YOU! We greatly appreciate YOUR support. Because of you we will continue to make progress in the fight against Ebola. We are sure to win - hopefully very soon.
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