Monday, January 24, 2011
Hi everyone!! a freezing cold day in icy grey Toronto as I squeeze the last few things into my bag. Packed and ready to go!
Three huge black duffel bags with wheels, $15. at Kensington market a total find! Maxine and i for two days...first of all at the Goodwill on 'half price' Friday! Max at one end and me at the other the cart in between, we had a blast! Incredible kid's clothing, great quality and so cheap, unbelievable. Four big garbage bags later we are out of there, back home, rolling and packing. Oh and the other great thing, my good friend Sylvia Safdie's son Dov owner of American Apparel shipped 250 t shirts up last week, printed on the back MAJENGO...packed.
You get two bags under 50lbs. I have three...with one overweight, but it's worth it..88 little kids over there with almost no clothing! we are desperate...!!
The other great thing..i've spent all week back and forth with Jeff at McKissock on the email, writing, gathering bios, photos, newspaper clippings and today, finally! Got them into my lawyer up here as our MAJENGO CANADA Charitable Registration application..yeah!! we have a board of 5 amazing people...all ready to go once we get approved..keep your fingers crossed. If i get it, we will be able to offer tax receipts on every dollar donated - a huge benefit to us, and to you!
Sister Sue from the Catholic mission just called to tell me they have a few thousand dollars collected for me when i get back....and a safe and wonderful bon voyage! Yes!!
Meeting Matt and Ian at the airport at 2...this is a huge trip for all of us..short..with Matt and Ian only one week, but what a week it will be...
Meeting Doris, director head of ICA Tanzania for breakfast Wed am to iron out both of our responsibilities and finances for the orphanage, with Charles...and on to Mto Wa Mbu. Meetings set up with the government people..got to get our numbers down. They brought 60 children to us a few weeks ago...but we can realistically only look after 40 new kids as well as our 28, well. We've want a GREAT orphanage, not a big one! Some of those kids were brought down to MtoWaMbu from cities and villages hours away to pad the director's pockets...some weren't orphans..and others have guardians living hours away who should be taken back to their home towns, and put into orphanages there. It makes sense.
We are now looking after 117 children....88 living in, and the rest out, but being supported by us with educational needs, uniforms, medicine, etc....too much!!
So government meetings...but right away off to Majengo to be with the kids...to see for ourselves how it is, how these new kids are coping...they have been abused for years by corrupt directors, malnutrition...poor health...but a few months down the road i know they will improve. I'm told these kids are so very happy! Huge smiles on their faces...love being together with all the other children of the orphanages, 5 of them, that were shut down. And what about our first kids..the 28 living in with us for almost 2 years! How are they adjusting with the 'invasion'...oh it will be amazing...
And our staff..how are they, cooking and cleaning for 100 people now every meal...3 x a day! With three houses, not one. I can't imagine.
And school..how many at our pre school now? We have Glory and Grayson teaching, but do we need a fewmore teachers? How many going to primary down the road. What are their needs: uniforms, sweaters, shoes..school bags for 100 kids! Shocking!
But we will do it...
I am thrilled Matt could take the time off work...that Ian is coming to shoot wondeful pictures of the kids..their new houses..
I can't wait to see Charles, and Peter...everyone there...so much to see, and learn and talk about..and finally, budget time....up until now, $41,000 annually for about 55 kids and 12 staff...and now...double that? we shall see! And oh, we paid for electricity in all three houses a few weeks ago...will there be light?
Got to run..a few minutes to go....
Next time..from hot sunny Tanzania....
Take care...talk soon....xxLynn