Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Do you want to go to Africa?


Here are a couple of amazing opportunities to go and "feel" Africa for yourself. These expeditions are led by amazing women who have been to Africa many times and will lead you through with grace and confidence. The trips are planned through RTC, Reach The Children, a great non-profit led by in-country heroes. Both of these expeditions will implement our "Grow. Learn. Give." program. Here is the info:

May 5th expedition:
The goal of RTC expeditions is 1) to support the organization's mission of facilitating self-reliance in communities dedicated to the well-being of underprivileged children, and 2) to give people with a desire to serve an opportunity to participate in various life-changing experiences.

May 2010 presents an opportunity to participate in a Reach the Children volunteer service expedition in Kenya. The focus of this expedition will continue and expand the teaching of square foot gardening and related nutrition, health, hygiene, and sanitation in schools and communities of Western Kenya. Additional forms of service will also be provided to a school and the children of a slum community in Nairobi, Kenya. In response to evaluated and approved requests from Kenya, projects will be more narrowly defined as the skills & experience of accepted applicants are reviewed and the team is formed.

Patty Liston (RTC's Director of Women's Initiatives) and Karen Bastow (Director of Agricultural Interests/Garden Specialist) are the team leaders of this 2 week expedition. We invite you to share our perspective that uplifting even one person makes the world a better place. Come join us--you'll be forever changed, too! Placement on the team roster is on a first come, first served basis of accepted applications. Space on this small team is limited, so if you are interested please do not procrastinate contacting us!

RTC (a 501c3 non-profit organization) expedition expenses are covered through donated funds. Each team member is responsible to make sure a minimum of $3950.00 has been donated to cover their expenses--which include the following as arranged for the team by RTC: airfare between approved US departure cities and African destination, team transportation in Africa, team lodging in Africa, all meals with the team in Africa, daily bottled water in Africa, team activities, and contributions to team projects*.

Apply online now. There is no obligation with an application, but it does offer team leaders the opportunity to review the information you provide and communicate with you about the team being developed

June Expedition:
In late June, Pat Jones (Director Expedition Dept.) and Michelle Cotton (Expedition Dept. Director of team development) will lead a team of volunteers to serve in East Africa for 2 1/2 weeks alongside the lovely people of that region. This team will continue the two-fold purpose of RTC expeditions to support the organization's mission of "facilitating self-reliance in communities dedicated to the well-being of underprivileged children," and to give people with a desire to serve an opportunity to participate in various life-changing experiences.

The main projects on which this general service team will focus are currently being determined by RTC's native leadership in Kenya as they respond to local requests of communities in need. Typical efforts include aid to schools and communities in the areas of health--particularly dental and personal hygiene, basic first aid and nutrition--namely through education, "training the trainers," as well as individuals. Additional support is often provided in the way of building/enhancing learning centers in schools and communities to support the continuation of education, learned skills, etc. Some resources are shared to strengthen and encourage this education and efforts toward improved self-reliance. Projects become more narrowly defined as the skills and experience of accepted applicants are reviewed and the team is formed. Volunteers are oriented and prepared over time as they become part of the expedition team.

We invite you to share our perspective that uplifting even one person makes the world a better place. Consider joining us--you'll be forever changed, too! Space for this unique team is limited. Placement on the team roster is on a first come, first served basis of accepted applications.

RTC (a 501c3 non-profit organization) expedition expenses are covered through donated funds. Each team member is responsible to make sure a minimum of $3950.00 has been donated to cover their expenses--which include the following as arranged for the team by RTC: airfare between approved US departure cities and African destination, team transportation in Africa, team lodging in Africa, all meals with team in Africa, daily bottled water in Africa, team activities, and contributions to team projects*.

Apply online now. There is no obligation with an application, but it does offer team leaders the opportunity to review the information you provide and communicate with you about the team being developed.



Thursday, February 18, 2010

Want to sew and help change the world?


We found the most loved and valued piece of clothing for a woman in the developing world------a reusable menstrual pad! These reusable pads liberate women and girls to go about their studies and work without worry of embarrassment. They wash these flannel insert pads to reuse.

These reuseable pads:
  • free up precious money every month saved from buying disposable pads
  • allow freedom of movement to go to school and work
  • save environmental concerns of disposing pads/tampon
  • prevent urinary tract infections by allowing woman to change to pads often and not worry about wasting money
  • give women and young women the dignity of achieving their goals and feeling beautiful every day of the month
  • are sustainable--women can learn to sew and sell reuseable menstrual pads
Every time a group travels to a developing nation we like to send them with a stock pile of pads and educational materials and underwear. We need sewers to help us keep up with the demand. Look up the pattern to the right (under "Blog Pages") and sew away! You can also collect underwear, or let us know if you are headed to a school or orphanage in a developing nation. We would love to hear from you-- just contact Michelle at michlars@msn.com.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Girl Effect


Our friends at "The Girl Effect" have created a fun and accurate video that truly captures the "girl effect" that we at Grow Learn Give are so eager to encourage. Enjoy their fabulous video below:

video

If you appreciated that, be sure to visit their website where you can learn more about the "girl effect" and the girls and women who are busy changing the world! And as another quick preview, here's a poster that reviews a number of steps that can be taken to empower our sisters around the world:


If you want to see this poster in detail, just click on "Give" on the homepage, and then click on "The Big Picture."

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Worth of Educating Girls


The entire premise of our work is founded on the truth that to educate a girl is to educate a family. Below are some of our favorite quotes, statistics, and stories demonstrating this truth.

“If you really want to change a culture, to empower women, improve basic hygiene and health care, and fight high rates of infant mortality, the answer is to educate girls.”
--Greg Mortenson, author of Three Cups of Tea and Stones into Schools

“What we are learning around the world is that if women are healthy and educated, their families will flourish. If women are free from violence, their families will flourish. If women have a chance to work and earn as full and equal partners in society, their families will flourish. And when families flourish, communities and nations do as well.”
--Secretary of State and former First Lady Hilary Clinton

In a speech to his fellow Ghanaians in the early 1900s, the visionary educator, Dr. J.E. Kwegyir Aggrey, declared, 'The surest way to keep a people down is to educate the men and neglect the women. If you educate a man you simply educate an individual, but if you educate a woman you educate a family.'"

Joy Phumaphi, World Bank vice president for human development and Danny Leipziger, World Bank vice president for poverty reduction, in the foreword of the report Girls' Education in the 21st Century: Gender Equality, Empowerment, and Economic Growth stated:
“Women’s economic empowerment is essential for economic development, growth, and poverty reduction—not only because of the income it generates, but also because it helps to break the vicious cycle of poverty."

Female literacy has been shown to have a positive effect on health because “educated women are more likely to be employed and to earn more than less-educated women” (Daniell & Mortensen, 2007, p. 278).

“(1) Formal education directly teaches health knowledge to mothers; (2) Literacy and numeracy skills acquired in school assist future mothers in diagnosing and treating child health problems; and (3) Exposure to modern society from formal schooling makes women more receptive to modern medical treatments” --Paul Glewwe, senior economist for The World Bank

“An extra year of girls’ education can reduce infant mortality by 5-10 percent” and “educated mothers are about 50 percent more likely to immunize their children than uneducated mothers are” (Herz & Sperling, 2004, p. 4).


"Documented benefits of female literacy include fewer children per mother, fewer children lost to disease, and a greater use of modern health care practices" (Spratt 1992).

Strategic investment to improve quality of life through female education will have the greatest impact on maternal mortality reduction” (McAllister and Baskett 2006).

Some quotes from The World Bank:
"Children of mothers with 5 years of primary education are 40% more likely to life beyond age 5."

"When the proportion of women with secondary schooling doubles, the fertility rate is reduced from 5.3 to 3.9 children per woman. Providing girls with an extra year of schooling increases their wages by 10 to 20 percent. There is evidence of more productive farming methods attributable to increased female schooling, and a 43 percent decline in malnutrition."

"Educating women has a greater impact on children’s schooling than educating men. Young rural Ugandans with secondary schooling are three times less likely to be HIV positive. In India, women with formal schooling are more likely to resist violence. In Bangladesh educated women are three times more likely to participate in political meetings."

To see The World Bank's page on girls' education, click here.