We are delighted to have been chosen as a finalist for the prestigious Bath Life Awards in the Charity Category. Our application looked back on 2016 where we focused on our ‘highlight moments’ despite a difficult year very much affected by the weak value of the sterling after Brexit. Here are just some of our highlights
Our microfarm and in particular, building of our mill – this has been completed two years early and by 2018 will be fully self-sustaining! Crops are plentiful, the animals (chickens, pigs, rabbits, turkeys, ducks and a quail-like game bird) are thriving. Even better, a personal donor funded the grinding machine for the mill that is now fully functional, separating the corn into flour, grain and animal feed. Not only does this provide food, but it also brings the community together as people come to have their crop processed and separated.
Our Family Partnership Programme – The Family Partnership Programme enables UK families to support families in our countries of operations. It was launched at our AGM in autumn 2016 and aims to help build family units that can become completely self-sustaining through our ongoing investment in them. We help by supporting their survival with healthy food, housing support, educating them in social skills so they can integrate with society and by providing training courses that will eventually lead them to be able to find a paid job. One-to-one case workers will work with these families to educate them about sexual health, hygiene, social skills and effective parenting. This in turn will allow their children to either start or continue with an education. In short, we aim to help the whole family to develop as a social productive unit safe from disease , hunger and deprivation, and integrating them into society enjoying their basic human rights of existence.
As well as these major developments we also have our ongoing projects which continue to provide relief for so many:
- We operate a canteen that provides hot meals for 140 families (up to 1500 individuals) who would otherwise not have them. Over 65,000 hot meals were provided in the year ending March 2016; 2016-17 will be higher!
- We deliver food parcels to families.
- We run a child sponsorship scheme so that children benefit from clothing, food and access to school.
- We work with relevant authorities to facilitate the provision of legal documents (including identity documents), and ceremonies, eg funerals, weddings.
- We provide employment opportunities and training – an apprentice in our UK office, and courses for our leaders and our beneficiaries in our projects.
- We provide funding for healthcare, including specific medical/surgical requirements and vaccination programmes.
- We work with UK schools – including Prior Park and Beechen Cliff in Bath – to build ‘Sanctuary Homes’, each of which provides a home, heating and cooking facilities for one family. Teams of students accompany our project leader to Romania for 10 days and build one complete home from scratch under his direction whilst there.
The Bath Life Awards take place on the 23rd Feb and we are so pleased to be included in such a strong category with many other worthy organisations. We look forward to sharing with you the result!