For those of you who haven't seen this video I did of Dr. Isaac and I a while back, I wanted to share it again. It really does capture how much I love and respect this man and his dedication to the work that he does in Uganda. Grow Hope would NOT EXIST without him.
Friends, it has been far too long since we have sent out a newsletter. We are grateful for your continued support and hope that you this newsletter gives you a sense of what we have accomplished with your help! The work in Uganda has been continuing and the progress the team has made in 2017 is amazing! New programs have been created and are impacting the two communities that we work in as well as the surrounding areas.
I visited Uganda in March this year and was astounded by the work that had been accomplished since my last visit. The team had expanded the work we do from one community to two and implemented a number of programs that we felt were important for growth and to empower our communities. I saw first hand some of the new programs including my very favorite one to take part in- educating girls on how their bodies work and providing them with supplies to enable them to be at school all month, every month. Prior to this many of our girls missed a week of school each month when they had their periods. It makes equal education difficult when the girls aren't able to attend as much as the boys. I loved talking to them and by the end of our time together they had transformed from shy and nervous girls to talkative and enthusiastic young women. It was amazing.
As I haven't been on the ground since March I wanted to share a more comprehensive update from Dr. Isaac and the team at Tusubira Village.
Warm regards to you. As we come to the end of 2017, I am pleased to share with you a summary of activities that we have been able to carry on in 2017 at Tusubira village.
Before anything, on my own behalf and on behalf of the team on this side, I wish to register our ever-warm gratitude for your extraordinary commitment and dedication, which has enabled us, have a successful year of impacting communities.
Empowering people through education and inspiration our mission statement has been at the forefront in all our day to day planning and activity implementation. We rely on our mission statement to build towers of hope in the hearts of the hopeless and light a candle of “possibility” in lives of the desiring men and women.
The following activities were undertaken in 2017:
1) Education and skills empowerment
• Carried out career guidance and life skills empowerment in 8 primary schools
• Conducted on-site 3 days business skills training for 40 youth with positive feedback from the participants
• Held 6 finance management classes for women from within our locality
• Carried out health and menstrual hygiene education in 7 primary schools
• Carried out sanitation and hygiene sensitization in our new area of operation in 36 families
• Offered psychosocial support
2) Household food security empowerment
• We have been able to set up and maintain the demo gardens from where people come to learn and get inspired. Some people come on self-invitation, others are invited.
• We have been able to use the yields to earn revenue for sustainability of the demo gardens
• Some yields are used to feed 40 children from the community school (porridge project), a proportion used to support some very poor families like mama Sarah and donating to hospitalized children due to malnutrition
• Given some families, seeds and foliage to plant especially for the Vit A biofortified sweet potatoes
3) Support and donations
• Made and donated reusable sanitary pads to 735 children in primary schools
• Provided school fees and scholastic materials to 10 primary children and three students in secondary school levels.
• Locally mobilized and donated clothes to 680 people in one of our new area of operation
• Offered support by mobilizing funds for hospital bills for a blind boy with congenital glaucoma
4) Tusubira village infrastructure
• Using the monthly donations, we have been able to accelerate progress on the education building. Much work has been finished; the major remaining work is fitting glasses, painting, soak pit, window insect screens, kitchen fitting, and water tank.
• Maintaining the well including repairing of the water tank and installation of more electric short circuit protective gadgets
• Built 6 African grass thatched houses with a total of 13 rooms for accommodating volunteers and guests purposely to generate income for sustainability.
• Planted more trees and demarcated the compound. The compound is now fully maintained and we employed Musoke the husband to Beatrice to work on the compound on monthly pay.
• Held monthly planning and evaluation meetings
• Visited other organizations to learn and share experiences
• Renewed the organization working permit for five years and widened our area of operation to a radius of 80km
• Daily, weekly and monthly budget monitoring for efficiency under low resource circumstances
• Attended schools parents meetings for schools where our beneficiary children attend.
2017 was an amazing year at Tusubira Village and in the communities we work in. I know that 2018 will be even better! I want you to know that we couldn't do the work that we do without the support of our incredible donors. We are grateful for our monthly donors that allow us to continue to grow our programs and impact these communities in sustainable ways. We are grateful for our donors who give to fundraisers or that think of us throughout the year.
And if you are looking for a place to make an end-of-year donation, we would be incredibly grateful if you would consider The Grow Hope Foundation.
The button below will allow you to either make a one-time donation or sign up as a monthly donor.
This year as the holidays approach so many of us are reevaluating what this season truly means. We're focusing more on what Christmas is really all about, at the same time looking at world issues not as something that is far away, but as something that our fellow humans-our sisters and our brothers, our mothers and our fathers, are struggling with. Many of us are comfortable and need for nothing but perspective shows us that we are not in the majority.
Today is Giving Tuesday - One of our favorite days of the holiday season. It's a day that focuses on the idea of giving some of what we have to those who have much less. It is about sharing opportunities with someone who simply needs a hand up. There are so many places to support-so much good work is being done around the world. Here at The Grow Hope Foundation, we are so grateful for the support we receive year round. We have amazing donors who have enabled us to create an incredible educational compound - Tusubira Village - that is literally changing lives. We are in the process of trying to complete an Education Building which will allow us to grow in so many ways.
So if you are looking for something to give to on this day of celebrating generosity and kindness, we would be honored if you were to chose to donate to Grow Hope. You also have the option of donating on behalf of someone you love. If you wish to do that, simply include a note with your donation with their name and address and we will send them a card explaining that you have made a donation on their behalf. You will receive the tax deduction, they really receive a gift that will continue to give, and the community in rural Uganda that is working so hard to change their lives-will receive the biggest gift of all.
You can make a donation here: https://www.aplos.com/aws/give/TheGrowHopeFoundation/
If you would like to become a monthly donor you can do so here:
Thank you and wishing you a wonderfully generous day!
Friends, we have an incredibly simple way for you to take part in the work that we are doing in Uganda. We're so excited to offer you this opportunity to make a HUGE impact every month without even having to make any effort. Our Monthly Donor program is a way for YOU to help us spread the work that we have been successfully doing over the past 2 1/2 years to areas desperately in need of opportunities to create healthy change for themselves and their families. Dr. Isaac and the team have been traveling throughout the countryside surrounding where we work on our compound- Tusubira Village - and they have discovered that while our community now has access to clean water and good sanitation and hygiene practices, the areas around us are in a very different state. The people in these communities desperately need the knowledge that we have offered our community in order to begin making healthy changes.
The thing is, every single monthly donor impacts how far and wide we can spread the work we have been doing. With as little as $10 a month we can begin to spread knowledge through small demonstration areas in each community- a demo garden and lessons on sanitation (proper latrines and sanitation tables for cookware) and hygiene (tip-top hand washing stations at each house). Every single donor impacts this work. The more we have, the more we can do. So if you haven't already joined us, go to our Aplos Monthly Donor page and sign up! It's so easy! A few clicks and your donation will be automatically deducted each month on the date that you set.
And starting next month, all monthly donors will receive monthly updates - just for them - on what progress has been made in the communities. They will receive photos taken in gratitude by the team in Uganda of the impact that you- our Monthly Donors - are making. Sign up now and be a part of the solution!!
Friends, we'd like to introduce you to one of our team members in Uganda. Godfrey has been with our program since the very beginning and is one of three people on the ground in Uganda that directly impacts our entire project. When you support The Grow Hope Foundation through our monthly donor program, you empower Godfrey to create even more opportunities for the people of our region to change the way they live and empower them to create healthier lives for themselves and their children. If you haven't already, join us as a monthly donor and be a part of this extraordinary work. Become a monthly donor HERE
Friends, meet Godfrey~
One of the greatest things I enjoy doing is rendering service especially to those who cannot help themselves. I am so glad to be on Tusubira Village team that is working hard to uplift the livelihood of people in my country Uganda. It is so satisfying to see people smile yet you are part of the cause of that smile. It is a great opportunity that we have to touch the lives of people in the communities that we work in. This gives us a chance to learn more of their challenges, a chance to exercise and share our skills and experiences in a humble way, and a chance to realize our own potential.
Since 2013 when we started training communities/schools on issues concerning hygiene and sanitation, food growing and storage, provision of water sources to mention but a few, I have witnessed great improvement in people’s lives, a confirmation to me that people can change, sometimes with just a simple push. Many of our people are what they are because of lack of information and proper guidance but who cares? At Tusubira Village we care.
Tusubira has accomplished a lot in 2013-2014, this was possible because of working hand in hand with Grow Hope Foundation in USA led by Kimberly, the local leaders, religious leaders and opinion leaders. Looking into the future I see Tusubira continuing to work not only with these partners, but with more international agencies and Uganda government agencies sharing the same vision. By empowering the families, communities are strengthened so the nation, but it is a gradual process. The good news is we have started on the long journey and never to quit.
I call upon every one willing to join us in the struggle of changing lives of people in our communities, to jump unto the wagon before it gets dark. May God bless us with new insights and ideas as we labor to serve His children.
Friends, you can now donate monthly from Europe - in Euros! Simply subscribe to join our monthly donors through Paypal and choose your amount. You can find the button below. Thanks so much for making this a world-wide effort to change lives!
Would you believe that for the cost of two coffees a month, you can impact the lives of people in a community 9000 miles away?
It's true - and we are going to prove it to you. The Grow Hope Foundation is already doing amazing work in rural Uganda and the effects of that work are starting to spread. We have seen the changes with our own eyes. We have seen malnutrition in children begin to decrease. We have seen women begin to grow their own food to feed their families! We have hosted students and groups and incredible women at Tusubira Village- our educational compound there- and we have have taught them valuable lessons in sanitation, hygiene and nutrition.
One of the things that we have learned over the past two and a half years is that we absolutely CAN NOT DO THIS ALONE. We need people who believe in the power of what we are doing. We need to build a team that support the work and know that the power of change is in their hands. We need YOU to become a monthly donor to The Grow Hope Foundation. For $10 a month- the cost of two coffees, you can be a part of impacting the life of a child in rural Uganda. You can help empower women to provide for their families. You can help us create opportunities for people that will take those opportunities and do AMAZING things! I promise you- I have seen it myself. It is humbling and encouraging and it gives me so much hope for the future of our community in southern Uganda and beyond. We have big dreams friends- dreams of spreading this hope and this empowerment far and wide. And with YOUR help- I promise you- WE CAN DO IT!
Will you join us today? Will you use the link below and take the five minutes or less that it will take to sign up and join our team? We could so use your help my friends- so please take a moment and join team Grow Hope~
Hello friends and happy 2016! I know it’s been a little quiet around here and for that we apologize. There is so much going on at Tusubira Village and planning and organizing being done on this side of the world. There is progress and change and exciting plans coming and we thought we would share some of that with you!
The Grow Hope Foundation is heading towards it’s 3rd year and we are slowly refining what it is we want to do going forward. We have learned so much in the past two and a half years thanks to partnering with our amazing team in Uganda. They are so filled with wisdom, ideas and passion for the community they are working in. They help guide us in the directions that will most impact the people there and through them we are beginning to find clarification in what it is we need to do on this side to empower their work there.
The Grow Hope Foundation is not an aid-based program. Rather it is a program that strives to empower communities and the people in them by providing the tools and resources THEY need to make improvements in their lives. We provide education in areas such as sanitation, hygiene and nutrition. We teach skills that allow them to then create an income source, which in turn provides the finances they need to do things like feed their families, send children to school or make improvements on their homes. We feel that this is the ONLY way we can impact communities long-term. There’s an old Chinese proverb that says “Give a man a fish and you will feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you will feed him for a lifetime.” Teaching a woman to fish is going to provide for her long after we are gone, as well as giving her something to teach her children, so that they too can create better futures for themselves and their families.
Our Most Pressing Project Right Now
We are in the process of raising funds to complete the Education Building at Tusubira Village. That building will not only house our social worker, who facilitates all of our programs, but will also offer accommodations for teams that travel to the compound to help educate the community. When the building is complete we hope to bring a team of teachers who will help educate and empower the Ugandan teachers currently working at our little community school. By empowering them with tools and skills that they would otherwise go without they will begin to take pride in the jobs and their students which will in turn give those students what they need to go further in their educations. We feel that by educating the educators (rather than the students themselves) we are providing a long-term solution to the challenges that public school teachers face in our community- lack of funding, support and encouragement. Better teachers empower students and our goal is to raise the number of successful students coming out of our community public school. Stay tuned for ways you can help in this area!
As for progress on the Education Building, we are slowly making progress as we generate funds to do so. The ceiling and walls have begun to be finished as well as some plumbing and electrical work. There is still much to do and we would love to have you join us in completing this building. All it takes is a donation - any amount is gratefully accepted. We have about $26,000 left to raise and with your help we KNOW we can do it! Use the button below or the Donate Now tab above to help us finish this building!
In the coming weeks we look forward to sharing posts written by other members of the team both here in the states and in Uganda. We also have a number of fundraisers planned that we will be announcing soon so stay tuned for those dates! 2016 is going to be a productive year friends - please join us in making it our best one yet!
We’ve returned from Uganda after a wonderful nearly two weeks at our educational compound Tusubira Village. We were absolutely amazed at the progress that had taken place since January of this year. Not only is the guesthouse half-way completed but the gardens are incredible! There is beautiful produce being harvested daily and being taken to market as part of our sustainability program. Groups are meeting at the compound to learn about both farming and to take part in skills training. The dedication to learning was impressive and I was so proud of the work the team is doing to create opportunities for this community.
We also hosted our first big workshop at Tusubira Village. I wish I could put to words what it meant to Dr. Isaac and I to see our dream come to fruition. The response from the participants- who had traveled seven hours on a bus to come and spend two days learning how to farm as they are facing a famine where they live- was so positive and excited. These 31 women will now be able to share the skills that they learned at the compound with each of their 31 cooperative communities in hopes of creating sustainable nutrition for their families. We couldn’t have asked for a better first workshop and are now certain that what we have been working so hard on for the past two years was exactly what we needed to be doing.
Now that we are home again and looking towards the holidays and the end of the year, we will be doing everything we can to raise the last $28,000 we need to finish the guesthouse at Tusubira Village. This building is the hinge on which so many of our plans are waiting. Once completed we will be able to implement much needed programs like family planning, empowering our local teachers and growing the Porridge Project. It is the next step in our journey and we can’t wait to begin the next exciting chapter. If you haven't had a chance to see the video tour of Tusubira Village you really must see it~
We will be shutting down our Go Fund Me campaign and sticking solely to donations through our website. It is so easy to make a donation with the button found below. Every single dollar counts and we are really pushing to complete this fundraising campaign by the end of 2015. But to do that we really need your help. We always appreciate your donations. But we are also grateful for your willingness to spread this campaign via social media. If you would copy the link to this post and spread it around we can finish this guesthouse and move forward in 2016! I promise you- you will be amazed at what happens next!
There are so many ways that people impact this project- sometimes in small ways, other times in large ones. We wanted to share one of these stories in hopes that it will inspire you to join us as an Ambassador and find your own connection to the Grow Hope foundation!
Last year a local elementary class decided to fundraise to send a few kids to school. We had spoken at this school and shared with them the differences in education between the US and where we are in Uganda. We talked about how lucky they are to be able to go to school without even thinking about it, while in our community, children will often ask for school fees before they will ask for food or toys. We shared photos of schools in the area surrounding Tusubira Village and they were taken aback at the stark differences - dirt floors, rickety wooden benches, no supplies. So this class took it upon themselves to raise funds to send as many kids as they could to school.
It turned out that this class was wildly successful! They raised enough money to send TEN kids to school for FIVE YEARS. They were given the option of either sending a large group to school for one year or a smaller group for a few years and they chose that option as they felt that it wouldn’t be fair to start them on a path of education only to remove it after a year. This class was PASSIONATE about this project - they gave it all they had to make a lasting impact on the lives of these kids half-way around the world. They were our first Ambassadors.
This project doesn’t stop there. They are now planning to continue to find ways to fundraise. We are working with them to find things we can take to “their students” when we return to Uganda in October. They are invested in these kids - these ten students with so much potential. They have photos and names and ages. They have connected and when we are there next month we hope to find a way to Skype so that all of these kids can “meet” and really feel what that connection means. Friends across the world- how amazing is that?
We share this story with you because we are looking for Ambassadors. We need people from all over who want to connect with this project- who want to take a part of what needs to be done and champion it. To share this project in THEIR community and get people excited about the impact that they can make in the lives of this community. To find a classroom that is looking for a community project where what they do is CHANGING THE TRAJECTORY OF A COMMUNITIES LIFE.
If you are interested in being a part of this- please contact us. We are happy to talk about the huge number of ways you can be a part of this movement to educate and empower this small community, so that they are able to then go and empower others. The potential is enormous and with your help we can see it happen!
Email us at email@example.com and become an Ambassador for the Grow Hope foundation. We would LOVE to have you~
Can you believe it is already August? The summer is flying by and we are excited by all of the progress that is happening on BOTH sides of the world- the incredible work being done at Tusubira Village and the many tasks being taken care of here in America.
In Uganda crops are being harvested and taken to the market to generate an income for Tusubira Village. It has been an incredible first growing season and they are definitely doing a great job of farming, thanks to the amazing mentors that they have learned from.
The women in the community continue to meet to work on projects and learn new skills. Our social worker Sharon is always on hand to facilitate conversations and work with the women to not only teach skills but help work through issues the women may be dealing with at home. These conversations between women help bond them as a community and they are learning to work together to accomplish more than they could do alone.
Here in America we are working on a number of ways to fundraise to complete our first building at Tusubira Village. The plan is to eventually have three structures on the property. A house to accommodate Sharon as well as guests that come to volunteer in the community, a workshop that is able to be secured where we will house things like sewing machines and supplies. It will also host educational workshops and meetings during the inclement seasons. We also need a small one room structure where our caretaker will live full-time. This is important for the security of the compound.
One way we are trying to make it easier for you to be a part of this amazing adventure is by creating a site that you can go to and easily make a donation of any amount. A couple of clicks and you are a part of changing lives on the other side of the planet! How amazing is that??
We want to thank you friends. Your incredible support, financial and otherwise makes what we do possible. We are grateful that you have opened your hearts to a community so far away and empowered them to create meaningful change to their health and way of life. You are a part of the team giving them the skills needed to making a better future. So thank you for that.
So much has happened in Tusubira Village since last month, and we wanted to show you how much you’ve helped us to achieve these goals!
The building, which had walls last time you saw, is now beginning to be roofed! This building will feature a Western style kitchen, essential for processing of food to go to market, as well as rooms for doctors and travelers to stay, and an area to provide safe, clean medical care for the women, men and children. We have so many dreams for this building; a clean, indoor space can change an entire community, and your support in building it has been so appreciated.
The biggest thing right now is to finish this first building at Tusubira Village. We need to put in electricity and plumbing, windows and walls, as well as furnish it. As soon as that is completed we can begin using the building for all of the things we plan to offer to this community - from family planning to skills training to having a social worker on site full-time. If you’re interested in supporting the building projects at Tusubira Village, be sure to check out the GoFundMe, which is still up and running! Your contribution will help change lives.
The gardens have been a source of financial growth as well as educational wealth for the entire community. These past few weeks, school children have been touring the gardens to learn about healthy eating and growing produce. These rows of maize, beans, peppers, bananas, mangos, and much more are being sold at the markets in order to raise the money to expand the gardens. These gardens will allow the community to become self-sustaining, and teaching school children how to take care of them is a vital part of building strength at Tusubira Village.
As we’re headed into the dry season, community members are learning how to mulch the gardens and cover the soil with banana leaves. This step prevents crop loss by keeping moisture at the roots of the plants. This is just one of the wonderful skills that are being developed!
The biggest reason why this project was created is the wonderful people whom we’ve gotten to work with in Uganda. These people, whose lives are directly touched by all the work you’ve helped us to accomplish, wanted to share with you what these changes meant to them.
Jussie, a young mother, says of her involvement with Grow Hope, “It has been a blessing to be part of this organization. A lot has changed in my life and my family… you taught me on how to feed my children which I did and they are now in good shape; my children are no longer getting sick all the time... I am also grateful… that you gave me ideas and inspired me to start up a business. I have plans of expanding my small business slowly. My life has generally changed to better and am grateful to you. I hope to learn more skills which I will use to develop myself more.”
Topista, who has helped rally the community around change, says “Who knew we would have friends even from America? My kids are in school…, we grow vegetables, and our sanitation has greatly improved since we got a latrine, which we didn’t have before. We have had material support from the Grow Hope Foundation, and I have learnt some skills, and I look forwards to learning more and transforming. I have many more hopes with this project, and I will stick to it until I get there.”
While Grow Hope helps to provide funds for growth, the primary goals are to provide opportunities for education and skill acquisition, which will help community members reach their goals of becoming self-sustaining and strong, through betterment of sanitation, school attendance, nutrition, empowerment of women, and many other aspects along the way.
We also wanted to say a big thank you to all who participated in the April art auction and the Tiggy & Grace shop opening earlier this month. Thanks to generous artists who donated their pieces, 100% of the proceeds are able to go to Tusubira Village. The auction alone raised almost $2000, the proceeds of which helped to start raising the roof on the first building!
The community has so many goals and projects they want to get started on. Next up are finishing the building, expanding the gardens, and getting the Porridge Project off to a good start!
The Porridge Project is a new program that will help prevent malnutrition in the area by creating the means for villagers to grow, mill, and package their own nutritional instant porridge. This porridge will not only provide school children a breakfast before a long day at school, but will provide jobs for residents, and profits through sales outside of the community.
Thank you for all that you do for the community at Tusubira Village, and thank you for allowing us to share our joys and successes with you!
“I have learnt one thing! That in life, nothing should be taken lightly. You have taught us so many things but much of what you have taught us has always been in our surroundings.”
–Fred, Tusubira Village Community Member