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My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period

by My Arms Wide Open
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period
GirlStuff.Period - Working away
GirlStuff.Period - Working away

We are excited!

GirlStuff.Period is making the news. On Nelson Mandela day (July 18th) this year we funded a community day in Bergnek and eTV South Africa was out visiting our ladies working away at GirlStuff.Period as well as the community in general.

The segment airs on DSTV in South Africa, channel 403 on Friday August 2nd, 2013 and will also air on SKY in the UK in the coming weeks. We will be sure to post an additional report once we have links to the recordings for you to take a look at at. This is such great publicity for us at GirlStuff.Period. 

Next Steps - Gaining Certification

In order for us to land some big orders in South Africa we need the Menstrual Kits we are making to gain approval and a certification from the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS). You may wonder what that means. Larger organizations will not purchase products from GirlStuff.Period without the comfort of a ‘blessing’ of the SABS and that includes an order for up to 10,000 kits we are working on at the moment. This approval is not unlike the certifications from the Underwriters Laboratories of Canada (ULC) and the FDA in the United States.

The good news is we have received a quote from the SABS to have the pads taken through a standards test for reusable, washable menstrual pads and this is where you can help. We now need to raise about $1,500 to pay for the testing and certification. Please help in any way you can.

We are grateful for your donations and support. Thank you for your continued support of girls and women in South Africa.

GirlStuff.Period - Packing the kits
GirlStuff.Period - Packing the kits

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Cradock, Eastern Cape
Cradock, Eastern Cape

We've been busy!

We have been busy this past quarter working with partners and some schools in the communities of Cradcok, Eastern Cape. Keabetswe drove down to Cradock to visit with 4 schools this past week and to distribute Menstrual Kits to over 200 girls at 4 Cradock schools. He and Nini have been working with the teachers at the schools to get girls the menstrual products they need to stay in school. He will also be visiting 2 schools in each of Polokwane and Gauteng later this month to distribute another 200 Menstrual Kits at those schools.

This was all made possible through the support we received from you to get Keabetswe around the country in South Africa as well as our partners and supporters at Lunapads.com and AFRIpads in Uganda who manufactured the kits for GirlStuff.Period. Working in partnership to support girls education: Lunapads.com, AFRIpads, My Arms Wide Open through our joint #Pads4Oprah campaign, are hoping to garner the attention and ultimately form a partnership with the OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network to create a robust and truly sustainable program to enable girls to be educated at the same level as boys and to be able to avail themselves of all the opportunities that boys are exposed to.

What else have we been up to?

The ladies of GirlStuff.Period have been busy working hard to get ready for some orders we are working on in South Africa. We are not ready to share details as yet, but as soon as we receive our first Purchase order we will be sure to share lots of details with you all.

In the meantime we’d thought we would share some of the pictures we received from Keabetswe after his trip around South Africa this past week.

Thank you for your ongoing support and contributions to this important cause. Please keep spreading the word and if you can make a recurring donation to keep the GirlStuff.Period business growing.

Pads4Oprah Campaign
Pads4Oprah Campaign
Pads4Oprah 2
Pads4Oprah 2
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The new equipment and machines arrive in Bergnek
The new equipment and machines arrive in Bergnek

Things are happening in a BIG way

Things are starting to happen in a BIG way at GirlStuff.Period, in South Africa. With the assistance of our donors and supporters like you, we have made progress in the setting up of the business, equipment purchases and we are participating in the Lunapads.com and AFRIPads #Pads4Oprah campaign. See the details below. The My Arms Wide Open® team works as a volunteer organization supporting the causes and the initiatives identified by the communities themselves that we are invited into. Without the financial support that each of you, our donors, provide our work would be that much more difficult and we would have to wait to assist the people we do. We are grateful for each of you and all of our supporters.

New Equipment, Empowering the Women of Bergnek

Good News!! This month we have been able to put the first of the equipment needs in place in Bergnek.

Working with our global network of supporters we were able to make additional purchases and expand marketing this month. We have added:

  • An additional industrial sewing machine;
  • An industrial surger; and
  • A shrink wrap machine for the packaging of our the GirlStuff.Period Menstrual Kits.
  • Produced the flyer's, instructions and business cards for the business.


The new machines now put us into a position to begin producing and finishing our own products. Up to know GirlStuff.Period has been working to perfect making the menstrual kits and having them finished by third parties as we did not yet have a surger. Now they are in a position to complete the entire production process on their own. We already have orders coming in and are receiving support from some large organizations across the country. 

Pads4Oprah

With the support of LunaPads.com and AFRIPads, My Arms Wide Open and GirlStuff.Period are participating in an international campaign to get the attention of Oprah Winfrey and the OWN network. We believe that with the support of Oprah Winfrey's and her organizations in Canada and the US we can have a direct and powerful impact on the lives of thousands of girls and women in many developing countries. Watch for our campaigns and news releases as well as pictures and video's of our activities. This month in South Africa we will be distributing 400 kits to girls in rural and urban schools in South Africa and we ask you to spread the news and re-tweet with the tags #Pads4Oprah #GirlStuffPeriod #MyArmsWideOpen #Lunapads and #AFRIPads

Let's keep our GirlStuff.Period program moving and GROWING

The funding we have to date has certainly allowed us to move forward, however we still need your support. Please pass the word around, get friends involved, and get involved directly if you choose to, as a volunteer and experience it for yourself.

 


Setting up
Setting up
Our Campaign #Pads4Oprah
Our Campaign #Pads4Oprah
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Bergnek GirlStuff.Period Kit Recipients
Bergnek GirlStuff.Period Kit Recipients

Thank you! for your gracious and generous support of GirlStuff.Period in the GlobalGiving Girl Effect Challenge 2012!!

The My Arms Wide Open team works as a volunteer group to support the causes and the initiatives identified by the communities we are invited into, to work with. Without the financial support that each of you provide, our work would be that much more difficult and we would have to wait to assist the people we do. We are grateful for you and all of supporters.

Although we did not achieve the results we wanted in the 2012 Girl Effect Challenge we did receive contributions and donations from over 80 people like you in the month of November. As a result of your generosity we will be in a position to add at least one used surger (over locker) to the GirlStuff.Period business in Bergnek, Limpopo in the New Year.

Although the Girl Effect Challenge 2012 is over, we certainly are not done yet and are continuing to seek out and find new donations to get the women of Bergnek, Limpopo all they need to build GirlStuff.Period into a strong and sustainable women owned and operated community business.  

Each contribution gets the women of Bergnek closer to realizing their goal and if you are considering making monthly donations to a cause, we urge you to make a monthly donation to GirlStuff.Period. Remember all it takes is $10 to give 2 girls the opportunity to positively change their lives and get the education they deserve.

Thank you for the support you have already given GirlStuff.Period

From each of our families at My Arms Wide Open and the women of Bergnek, we wish you a very happy and blessed holiday season!!

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The Girls of Bergnek
The Girls of Bergnek

We have just returned from a trip to Bergnek, Limpopo in South Africa which was extremely successful.

Gratitude

We are grateful for each of you, our supporters and donors, in this initial phase of the project. We are also so grateful for Madeleine Shaw and Suzanne Siemens, co-founders of Lunapads.com® and Pads4Girls, who have not only contributed financially to the women and girls of Bergnek, they have also been an inspiration and wonderful mentors in supporting the women of Bergnek and My Arms Wide Open every step of the way without hesitation to get GirlStuff.Period up and running. 

The initial phase of the project has been to supply pre-made kits to the girls in the community of Bergnek and a small inventory, while teaching the women of Bergnek how to make the menstrual kits and run their business. This first order of 250 kits and the starting inventory were supplied through the generous donations of our supporters and the wonderful people at Pads4Girls affiliate, AFRIPads, in Uganda.

As with each of the community businesses My Arms Wide Open® supports, we are committed to working right along side GirlStuff.Period for a minimum of 5 years to ensure they have the support and skills they need to create and sustain a successful business, a community-based business that makes and supplies washable, reusable menstrual products so that young girls can stay in school.

People are talking

We’ve been spreading the word with the people we meet and talk to and have already received commitments of support from the Polokwane regional councilor, July Mokwenjama and the teachers in the local schools. In addition to that we have already started receiving orders from a number of people and organizations for GirlStuff.Period Menstrual Kits. The demand is here and very evident.

How can you help?

Period4FINAL SML

There are still needs. My Arms Wide Open has been able to provide GirlStuff.Period with the raw materials and supplies to manufacture approximately 1,000 menstrual kits working with the machinery they currently have.

In order for GirlStuff.Period to be able to build a sustainable business that can meet the demand in the local market they need the funds to do the following:

  • Supply an additional 2,500 menstrual kits
  • Purchase 2 more industrial sewing machines
  • Purchase 2 industrial surgers (over-locking) machines
  • Purchase raw materials • Marketing support
  • Lease or build their own work space

Thank you for your continued support. Your contributions have made a significant difference in the lives of the girls in Bergnek already. Keep spreading the word so that the women of Bergnek can fully establish a sustainable businesses of their own to supply menstrual kits to girls and women across South Africa.

Please forward this message and join our mailing list to stay updated.

Bergnek School Pads4Girls
Bergnek School Pads4Girls
Learning to make menstrual kits GirlStuff.Period
Learning to make menstrual kits GirlStuff.Period

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Organization Information

My Arms Wide Open

Location: Vancouver, British Columbia - Canada
Website:
Project Leader:
Warren Te Brugge
Vancouver, British Columbia Canada
$16,436 raised of $45,000 goal
 
595 donations
$28,564 to go
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