Category Archives: Project News

2019 News from a Selection of our Projects

For reports from our projects and other news please download or view our most recent Newsletter.

Newsletter Summer 2019

HISTORIC REPORTS FROM PREVIOUS YEARS

For those of you concerned about the school TWOAT supports in Sierra Leone, the mud slide was in a different area of the city although “our school” has had some damage from the rainfall.

I have been in touch with our contact Ruth and she will let us know what is happening with respect to repairs etc.  In the meanwhile you can follow their progress via their Facebook page here:

https://www.facebook.com/swatscharity/

SAN ANDRES HOME, CHOSICA, PERU

The Home for orphans and abandoned children suffered some damage to the roof and childrens’ bedding as a result of torrential rains in the Spring which affected the town of Chosica very badly.    The Home was also cut off from normal communications which meant that funds usually received from the UK were not forthcoming. This required Betty Attwell, who runs the Home, to obtain bank loans to keep the Home going.    We have asked for details of the damage costs and the interest payable on the loans to see if we can help with these.  In the meantime we sent our usual annual donation of £900 in February.

You can see a video showing the floods in Lima (but not our orphanage) here

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMKdVJofJbM

COMUS, EL SALVADOR

Our support of COMUS has finished because they are now being funded by a Canadian charity.   Through our ‘link’ man in Salvador, Jamie Coutts, who formerly worked for COMUS, we have been given details of a secondary school project which is endeavouring to educate pupils on the value of compost and its creation. We sent £500 to Jamie for the Project in February.   We expect to have a report from Jamie in due course on how the project is going.

Here is a report of a meeting with Jamie

Meeting with Jamie Coutts on 25th September 2017

Present: John Allinson, Adrienne Elliott, Arely Rodriguez Coutts, Jamie Coutts

TWOAT’S funding now supports a project at the El Sauce State School in Sonsonate, Salvador. (sponsored by the Canadian Charity (www.rainbowofhopeforchildren.ca/project ).      The project was set up by Brenda Carpio in 2004 and Jamie has been employed since 2010  It is called the “ El Sauce Mini Farm”   This has worked in 3 other establishments in Sonsonate since this time and is now working with the primary and secondary schools as well.

The project is based on creating an  organic produce-only i.e kitchen garden with  compost and  Bio ferments (liquid fertilisers) and making all the types of fertilisers and fungicides and insecticides in house. It then demonstrates its value by growing vegetables for the School kitchen ( the State provides only a limited amount of basic food, the School then having to provide the rest, as well as paying the cooks ) as well as for local markets and children’s parents.

The Project has been most successful. Our funding helps towards a salary for Francisco who looks after the vegetable plots in conjunction with the composting project.     School children aged 7-17 work in the garden.

The success of the garden  project has expanded into the local community and some produce is sold locally at a fair price. There are 18 crops in production without any use of chemicals.

A major focus is to educate the children, who are mostly urban, in growing crops. The children make the compost and dig it in ( double digging to improve the soil ), sow the plants and harvest the crops. The education of the children has been significant. As local gardens are small, Francisco is also encouraging the use of hanging gardens in them constructed from Coca Cola bottles to grow herbs and vegetables.

Jamie told us how the word spreads and the community now helps in the making of the compost. He has provided a breakdown of the quantity of the produce of the “Mini Farm” from 210 to date

El Sauce Mini Farm is now providing teaching to other schools and local people on composting and growing vegetables. Knowledge is spreading throughout the community.

“El Hobo”, a local cooperative, provides manure free to the “Mini Farm”.

Brenda Carpio Brooks is the local co-ordinator of Rainbow of Hope in El Salvador which receives sponsorship of the project from Canada.

Brenda is the contact with Mrs Clara Qualizza and Mr Don Shaeren  who started the garden project in 2004,  In 2014 help came from McCains of Canada ( a soil renovation and land regeneration business arising from the oil industry ) which has been donating $US35.000 pa to the Charity through Canadian Tax relief.

The current slump in oil has meant that from June this year McCains cannot continue to fund the school. As a result, TWOAT may be asked to help more towards Francisco’s salary. At present, he receives $325 a month from the Rainbow Trust but funding towards his salary will stop in December.

There are 1568 pupils in school – half attend in the morning and half in the afternoon. The school was originally built with German funding.   A PTA oversees the running of the school.

Mrs Clara Qualizza has now approached the Alberta Provincial government for funding and her request has been co written by Brenda Brooks with help from the technical team from the school.

John suggested that funding from TWOAT can be split between a salary increase for Francisco and any other compost project costs.      Jamie will keep us posted as to how funding could best be used.

ST JOHN SCHOOL FOR THE DEAF, GAMBIA

The School has had major problems with the ‘ageing’ buses it uses to bring pupils to School.  The vast majority of pupils have to be brought in by bus because otherwise they would simply not be able to reach the School.  Ideally the School needs new or good condition second hand buses, a very costly exercise!     As last year, we sent £1000 in February towards the expense of operating the buses but this can only go so far in meeting the transport costs.   Other needs have been considered by us but we don’t feel able to meet them.

THE ‘HELWEL’ TRUST, Kwa Zulu, Natal, SOUTH AFRICA

The development programme for Practitioners who provide Training and Resources in Early Education (TREE) for young children in Kwa Zulu Natal in South Africa continues and we support it with £900 per year. We will be having a representative from the charity speaking at our Annual Social Meeting in October.

THE ‘KAKAMEGA PROJECT’ (RUSH), KENYA

Elizabeth Noble, a former school teacher in Reigate, and her friend Joan, continue to be very active in helping the village of Kakamega and the area around it.    Elizabeth gave us a very good update on the project at last year’s AGM.   From the donations given at the meeting, together with our usual annual donation, we sent the Project £1500 in January to be used for another “Jigger” flea medical camp and other needs as determined by Elizabeth and Joan.

THE SEURR SANG’IDA REHABILITATION TRUST, SOUTH WEST KENYA

The Trust aims to rehabilitate children who are suffering from disabilities of various kinds in the area around the village of Entasopia, about 50 km SW of Nairobi.    This year the Trust has been improving the accommodation at its school in the village and we sent a donation of £750 in June towards this.

THE PASTOR’S SCHOOL, SIERRA LEONE

We are continuing to support the teachers’ salaries and are receiving feedback through the web site WWW.SWATS.CO.UK which is the fund raising UK operation and the charity’s Facebook page.  Whilst the school itself was fortunately not directly impacted by the disastrous recent mud-slide, some relatives of teachers and children were not so lucky.  The school has suffered damage to its roof from the heavy rain and we are waiting to hear from the project what extra help might be needed.

RAINBOW AFRICA, ZAMBIA

The Rainbow Africa Operations’ centre is based in Livingstone, Zambia close to the beautiful Victoria Falls and the Zambezi River.  The King’s Primary School on this site currently provides high quality education for over 400 children in 9 grades of 2-form entry and has been running for 15 years. The school, is consistently achieving some of the highest results in the Southern province, and so it comes as no surprise that there is great demand for places. TWOAT is sponsoring 2 girls, Zangi and Blessing, who attend the school. As well as an education they get a meal a day and health care.  We receive regular reports on the children’s progress

CHRISTIAN MEDICAL COLLEGE AND HOSPITAL, LUDHIANA, INDIA

CMC is one of the top medical colleges in India.  Patients who can afford it are able to access a wide range of specialities.  But the very poor soon find that the bill for investigation and treatment is far beyond their means. The doctors can then apply for help to their Good Samaritan Fund, to which TWOAT contributes £500 a year.

CALCUTTA CATHEDRAL RELIEF SERVICE

As in many of the poorer parts of the world, knowledge and self-confidence help people to use the services that are available in their country.  CRS works with women in some of the slums of Kolkata.  Courses in tailoring, and in beautician training, include business management so that women can set up their own small business with confidence.  Health sessions include safe sanitation, spotting signs of TB or breast cancer, children’s immunizations, etc., as well as how to access government services when needed.  TWOAT sends £1000 a year to CRS towards this work.

ST.LUKE’S HOSPITAL, HIRANPUR, INDIA

Much has been accomplished in the last year in bringing this old hospital back to life.  Drs. Shubhro and Elisabeth Mullick (both of whom have worked at CMC Ludhiana) are still only able to do out-patient work, because of lack of permanent staffing.  However, an eye team from Malda Medical College has offered to come and hold ‘eye camps’ about twice a month.  The surgeons will bring their own instruments and do examinations and operations, with OPD follow-up by their technicians.  This work cannot start until suitable rooms have been repaired and re-roofed, and TWOAT has sent £1000 for this work.  The roof is now water-tight so work can be done on the inside of the buildings.

PAPUA PARTNERS, WEST PAPUA

For the last 7 years via Papua Partners TWOAT has been paying the salary of Yepina Matuan.  She started her career as a midwife but is now responsible for a wide range of health programmes in Yasumat, a locally established charity whose name stands for Social Foundation for Isolated Peoples.  The Papua Partners project is run by a couple, one of whose family home was in Westcott Surrey.  In addition to healthcare and education the project is heavily involved in developing social cohesion amongst peoples who have only recently moved on from Stone Age technology.  You can read more about their work on their web site

www.papuapartners.org

AMBONDROMIFEHY WATER & NURSERY SCHOOL PROJECT, MADAGASCAR

Ambondromifehy is a small village whose adults mostly work in a nearby sapphire mine in the north of Madagascar. In 2010 TWOAT helped the local Mothers’ Union to establish a small nursery school. The community continued to press for the school to take on more children and extend education into later years.  TWOAT increased its annual support to £1,500 to help this to happen.  However, as described in the opening section of this newsletter, a disaster at the local mine has put the school’s continuing existence in its present form in doubt.  We are waiting for further news of the mine’s likely future so that we can review with our MU contact how best to preserve some educational capability in the village.

NEPALESE SCHOOL TEACHER, KERUNG, NEPAL (in the foothills of Mt Everest)

Our Nepalese school suffered another setback this year when the central government told them that previously promised money to replace TWOAT funding of an extra year group teacher could not be provided as national earthquake costs had consumed all their spare resources.  The extra teacher saves a whole class of 11 year olds from having to trek several miles every day through the mountains to the nearest secondary school. Providentially a trust administered by a Tadworth family has very generously provided us with a donation of £2,000 which will fund the additional teacher for at least another year by which time the Nepalese government might be in a better position to take on this responsibility.

BREAD, BEREGA, TANZANIA

The Government of Tanzania has recently failed to send the wages for Berega Hospital staffThey have said this situation will be rectified but the money is still awaited and the UK Charity BREAD which helps the hospital has only limited resources to cover this shortfall.  We have asked them to keep us in touch with the situation – our own ability to help is not great but we continue to send £500 per year.

MTANDIKA TRADE SCHOOL, TANZANIA

We regularly send £750 pa to help with running costs that include providing a sewing machine for each graduate to give them a start in life.  The school, run by nuns, previously focused on education for girls but a new government policy requiring co-education has resulted in their expanding their teaching so that in future boys can learn electrical engineering and building construction.  In future we will send additional funds to help the school achieve this.

PROJECT TO SUPPORT BURMESE REFUGEES EMMANUEL SCHOOL

This school with 192 children and 7 teachers is located in Thailand near the border with Myanmar. The children are those of Karen refugees who have been displaced from Myanmar as a result of a continuous conflict with the Myanmar central Government that dates back to WW2 when the Karen were allies of the British fighting both the Japanese and the then central Government of Burma.  The organisation we work through is called H4FA which means Help for Forgotten Allies.  They fund the school which costs £7,500 per year, as well as giving small stipends to those pensioners who fought with British forces in WW2.   We currently provide £500 per year which is about the cost of one of the teachers.  Unfortunately the situation of the refugees has not improved despite the new regime in Myanmar and if anything is even more uncertain as the Thai Government would prefer the camps to be removed.

OTHER PROJECTS

This year we made a small contribution to a school party from Sussex visiting and working at a school in Moldova.  We provided £55 towards the cost of a children’s summer camp in Albania via Light Force International. We have continued to send tools (electric or hand) for renovation and despatch to poor countries – please contact John Allinson if you have any such tools.  The majority of our projects now entail some degree of ongoing commitment of financial support into future years as this helps the project leaders to plan ahead. The current commitment list into 2018 has identified expenditure of nearly £20,000 but as mentioned previously we may have to adjust this upwards if the pound’s exchange rate falls.

In order to plan for these future commitments it greatly assists us if regular donations are provided by means of Standing Orders – forms for this can be obtained from John Tedder. It also helps us if we can communicate with supporters via email. If you now have access to an email address, please let us know via the chairman’s email below.

Finally we are always interested in welcoming new people onto our committee especially if you live in Walton or Kingswood as our current committee is rather centred on Tadworth.

News from our project in Nepal

To go to latest correspondence with Nepal go here

We had been relieved to hear that the village and school we support in Nepal had only slight damage from the initial earthquake but on Friday 15th May we received the grim news that the second quake had devastated the village and rendered the school buildings unsafe.  Modern communications are such that the local TWOAT contact in the village, Sherpa Rudra, managed to send an email  on Friday May 15th– this is an extract using his spelling: “We have had second one bigest earthquake. And by that earthquake it destroyed a lot of houses, school monastery and many more so and our school building also totally destroyed. It did not collapsed but it’s moved down like bend also some room’s wall fall down some room had big cracked.”  We told Rudra he could use the £1300 we had already sent, ready to pay for an additional teacher’s salary, in whatever way was needed to alleviate the village’s problems.  He sent a further email on Saturday 16th May giving extra details about the conditions: “….meanwhile according to your advice I will help some of my villagers with money that I have to use for second teacher which I have got from TWOAT. Though we don’t have temporary tents nowadays we are spending our worsful time in small tarpaulin we have been staying in tarpaulin since three weeks. The wheather is becoming bad day by day sometime too much windy and raining sometimes hevey raining because the monsoon season will be starts by June first week there are more possibilities to have big landslide hear in Kerung also so we are afraiding very much.”

This is the school how it was last year

Nepal School 2

 

This is a picture of some of the children who attend the school:

Nepal school 1

This picture was taken earlier this year showing building work in progress for the new classroom for which TWOAT would fund the teacher.

 

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This is a picture showing walls now broken and falling inwards.

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Further details from Sherpa Rudra sent Saturday May 16th :

My house also cracked In everypart of wall. its not in good condition what shall I do? There is no way to solutions for it.I do have electricity and water.yes indeed the government policeman and village development secretary arrived here at first time earthquake but each of
everyone is not getting enough help by the government.Most of the effected people are helpless. Our vegetables are maize are some safe for sometimes some peoples are injured and they have got some treatment from local medical but every hurt is broken,every eyes has tear this is very shockfull situations.
That’s all for now.
I will write to you again soon.

Sincerely yours
Rudra

Message from Rudra received Sat May 23rd after we told him we would set up an appeal for his village on our web site and in newspapers.

Thank you very much for your kindly helpful message. We are still suffering by the quake jolt everyday we all are staying in tarpaulin.every days the quake aftershocks so that we all are in bad situations.
By the way by some TWOAT money I manage some tarpaulin, blanket, and some food by that money it’s help a lot for us to relief for victims.

Thank you very much for your appeal also money from TWOAT .I know it help very very much if we get helping money then definitely we want built temporary shelters as well buy or necessary things there is no problem for transportation……yes indeed the government arrived but only very little relief helping things…..
Your sincerely
Rudra

Further message from Rudra Tuesday May 26th addressed to his contact on our committee Dick Shelley and Dick’s wife Rosaleen whom he met whilst acting as a guide for them on a trek in Nepal.  Namaste is a word of greeting.

Dear Dick,Rosaleen and all the members of TWOAT Namaste

Thank you very much for your unforgotable help. Its such a great great help.I know we know we never ever forget in our life it really feel us that you are giving new life for all the people who have effected by earthquack .
By those peoples they are sending to you all who put there hands together in bad situations.
Yes indeed, the quakes are calming down but still its not stopped. The seasons is falling in to the rainy season but in a day or night its coming very dangerous windy and rain. It’s also very much effected for the victims of earthquake peoples. It’s very hard to stay in tarpaulin .
Although I also need help for to buy shelter as well as food managed for my family . Because I have to manage as soon as early before began the monsoon.I hope you can help for this too.
Because it is going to be my challenging life.
About the school that is going to open after four days. The school building is unsafe only for four room because it has fall dawn the wall.
So we are not going to use these room besides this teacher are ok.
That’s all for now. Once again thank you very much for your help.

Your sincerely
Rudra.

We were concerned that our contact Rudra might not want to be responsible on his own for deciding who should be helped from the money we had sent.  Previously our funding was for specific purposes at the school such as paying a teacher’s wages.  We sent him an email asking about the village structure; whether it had a headman or committee of elders; and whether he would prefer us to suggest a priority order for those needing help? We also asked when the money we said he could divert from paying a teacher would be needed for the original purpose?  The following was his answer received on June 5th:

Dear Dick and Rosaleen as well as all the members of TWOAT many many Namaste from me rudra also by Kerung peoples.

Thank you very much for your nice email we are very very glad that you and TWOAT helped a lot for us we never forget your help  in our critical condition life. I know and we know that it was really difficult for to manage things in horrible conditions but we brought the things from the market by  money than we distribute all of them equal. We brought tarpaulin, blanket , rice ,oil, dal.  We have own village management committee.

Yes it is , it is really hard to do fair but by the community we made the rules with categories in the victims peoples than we distributed to them all. There is a leader in our community. Among of them I am a second leader.

Most of the important things that we had to manage tarpaulin. Otherwise each of everyone was staying outside the house. So that we did so on. There are more than one hundred  fifty five house hold in our village. Although we have more 155 adults and less than that children; among of six adults were injured. Nowadays they are getting better than last time. And eighty three houses family are living in open because there homes are unsafe.

As far as for the school I have to pay for second teacher as soon early so please if you provide soon than I could pay soon. Our school building is totally major damaged so we are under construction temporary building  for students. The children are attending at school but not lessons in class.  May be  by coming up next week the lessons will be run.

That’s all for now.

Your faithful

Rudra.

 We asked Rudra to give us some more details of the way he has spent the £2300 in emergency relief we sent to him and also whether he yet had any idea of the re-building cost for the school.

He replied on July 1st telling us that the mobile phone he uses to email us had a fault but it is now working again.

 He told us that he had purchased 150 tarpaulins/tents and these had cost about £13 each – the actual total was £1875.  The rest of the £2300 had gone on food and oil for families who had lost their stocks.

He told us that the new classroom they had added to the school at the beginning of the year cost about £10,000.  The school was probably about 4 times the size of this extension.  He told us the Monsoon has arrived.  Looking at the weather forecast for Kathmandu I see steady rain with lightning for the next 10 days!!  

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Monsoon and temporary tarpaulin shelters

He has most recently written to us concerning the problems caused by the Monsoon rains.  These have resulted in mudslides causing further damage to the village.  His own mother’s house has been affected by this.

We have sent another £1,300 from funds donated to replace the teacher’s salary which we diverted to provide some immediate help.

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Pupils using temporary classroom under tarpaulins

This is an extract from an email received from Rudra on Nov 13th.  We have added some italicized text to clarify what Rudra is saying.  For example we asked him to send us an account of how the re-building money we send has been spent about every 6 to 8 weeks and gave him a sample format.

Dear Dick and all members of TWOAT Namaste (greetings) from me Rudra as well as Kerung peoples.
Thank you very very much for your such a kindfull or helpfull message. All of our Kerung peoples are doing well except my mother. My mother is still doing so so….. that’s why I couldn’t write to you email before so far. (Rudra’s Mother’s house was damaged in a subsequent mudslide)
Thank you very much for raised money the rebuilding of our school. It is such unforgettable help.
I will fully responsible to keep careful account in my phone or computer. I will spend all money according to your suggestion which I will follow TWOAT instruction and sample (reporting format).
I will send you all the things which you need from us like photos and others.
As far as there is not any other organization that would like(ly) to help for us. This is only I know the government of Nepal which they should have to rebuilt our school but I heard that more than 23000 school has been fully damaged by earthquake our government does not have that much money to rebuild soon all these  schools.
How much money that we need which about approximately amount I wrote to you in my last email (£10 – 15,000). Definitely no doubt our villager will help to rebuild our school that they can help forever. Yes indeed it is really big contribution for Kerung children by Tadworth.
I have looked your photos which you have been doing presentation and participated
peoples. (We sent Rudra pictures of Dick talking about Nepal to our Annual Meeting)
I like it very much it’s such a kindly and Smiley face that I saw on your photos.

That’s all for now, once again thank you very much for all TWOAT.

Sincerely yours

Rudra.

Much more will be needed to rebuild the school – we have set an initial target of £10- !5,000.  If you want to help as well, you can donate either directly with a cheque to our Treasurer, John Tedder, at 103 Shelvers Way, Tadworth, KT20 5QQ or via our VirginMoneyGiving site here.