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Month 33 ~ Hope Through Health

Togo, officially the Togolese Republic, is a country in West Africa immediately east of Ghana. In November, 2010 a census gave Togo a population of 6,191,155. According to the CIA Factbook the under 5 year mortality rate is 10%; and the life expectancy is only 60.6 years. 700 million people lack access to adequate health care worldwide including nearly 5 million in Togo alone (nearly 85% of the entire population of the country). And I never even knew that there was such a country.

Hope Through Health aims to transform the dynamics of health care delivery in Togo through the involvement of community members and programs that respond directly to patient priorities. Founded in an effort to provide HIV care and treatment to the neglected population of Togo Hope Through Health has expanded to encompass a greater role in health care but has kept a focus on HIV and its devastating effects in communities. I am proud to introduce Hope Through Health as this months 50four50 project.

What is so important about Togo? ...

The country of Togo has seen it's fair share of strife; having had a very rocky political history in the 53 years since it's independence from France in 1960. Political violence, military dictatorships, corrupt elections, ties to ivory poaching and a terrible human rights record has resulted in withdrawal of aid from the European Union since 1993. Now Togo is one of the world's least well supported countries with respect to the aid they so desperately need.

Hope Through Health is the only international organization providing life saving health care services in northern Togo. They have developed and continue to support five health centers in the Kara region of the small West African nation.

How does Hope Through Health help? ...

Good health is the first step on the road out of poverty. The mission of Hope Through Health is to deliver efficient, effective, community-driven health care in neglected settings starting with Togo. They partner with the brightest individuals and organizations in global health delivery to adapt the field’s best practices to the neglected settings where they work. Partnership is one of Hope Through Health’s core operating principles. Hope Through Health establishes long-term partnerships with communities and like-minded organizations and individuals in the field of global health delivery in which all parties have an equal voice. In this way Hope Through Health works to adapt best practices for implementation in Togo.

This month I really want have a specific, concrete goal ...

This month I want us to really be specific about our goal. I want us to sponsor two Health workers in Togo. In fact I have names and a few details about the two I propose we sponsor.

Farilatou worked as a secretary and community event organizer for a HIV-prevention NGO before coming to Hope Through Health to work as a Community Health Worker this June. She lives with her father and young son right near the clinic, and is excited to be a part of the Hope Through Health family! She works with patients who live in her neighborhood and she is something of a social butterfly, saying hello to everyone as she passes them in the street.  Farilatou has high hopes for Hope Through Health’s future, and can’t wait to see where things go with the Community Health Worker program as it expands.

Assiki has been a Community Health Worker at Hope Through Health since 2005. She previously worked as a psychotherapist and as an organizer for an HIV-prevention group. Earlier this year, Assiki was offered a higher-paying position as a community health worker through the Global Fund, but, as she put it, “par l’amour de l’Hope Through Health,” "by her love of Hope Through Health," she decided to stay. She is excited to be one of the first Community Health Workers to pilot the mobile health technology and GIS projects. A widow, raising one child of her own and seven adopted children, Assiki is passionate about helping orphans in Togo.

I have already commenced the donations for both these women and I look forward to watching our group cover the costs of these two dedicated health workers.

I have left specific links to the donation page for these two women in the section above as well as below. You may chose to split your donation between the 2; double your donation this month to support the 2 or simply choose one or the other to donate to. May I ask that if you are not putting your own name in the "Name" section of the donation form would you please put in 50four50 as the name of the donor.

There is a third Community Health Worker who needs sponsoring - Koffi. It would be fantastic if we could cover the costs of all 3 but as a realist I am guessing that will be pretty unlikely.

NOW (as usual) IT'S UP TO YOU ...

Make your monthly donation now!!

1.  Find out more about Hope Through Health from their website HERE or their Facebook site HERE

2. Go directly to make your donation to one of the  Hope Through Health workers by following these links



Please place 50four50 into the donor name field if you are not using your own name.

Don't forget to return to this page and let us know how much you have donated by putting the figure into the box on the right hand side of the page.


Month 32 ~ The Wello WaterWheel

I came across this fantastic innovative idea in a Facebook post at the end of last year and immediately knew I would want to support it by making it the focus of a 50four50 project.

Wello is a social venture with a bold mission:
to effectively deliver clean water to a thirsty world

That image of an indian woman rolling a Wello WaterWheel containing 50 liters of drinking water from the distant water source to her home that I saw on Facebook, was inspiring to me to say the least. Transporting this volume of water so quickly and so easily would have been considered impossible before someone had the simple idea that became the Wello WaterWheel.

So what is the problem? ...

For us, clean water comes with the twist of a tap; but for 1 in 6 people on our planet, access to water requires hard work: hours of walking, waiting in line and heavy lifting.

The time spent fulfilling this basic need keeps many children out of school and prevents women from carrying out all the domestic and income generating work for which they are responsible. In much of the developing world, it is often necessary to walk 10km or more every day to fetch water. In the dry season, it is not uncommon to walk twice this distance. Collecting water can be dangerous too. The traditional method of carrying water – carrying a 20 liter bucket on the head – can damage the spine, causing chronic pain and even leading to complications during childbirth.

Many aid and charitable organizations (some of which have been the focus of our donations in previous months) are working hard to provide wells close to communities. But even when they are operating not everyone is in close proximity to the water source.

Tell me about this Wello WaterWheel ...

Fewer trips to collect water means women and children can spend more time on productive educational and economic activities. The daily burden of water collection undermines productivity, limits educational opportunities and traps households in poverty. Wello focuses on reducing the negative social, economic and health consequences of carrying heavy loads of water over long distances.

By giving people easier access to potable water, the WaterWheel frees up valuable time, and in the process, removes barriers that prevent children from going to school and empowers women to engage in more productive activities. Research shows that when women have extra time, they choose to spend it on activities that boost family income, education, health, and wellbeing. Women with even a few years of education have smaller, healthier families, and are more likely to send their children to school. Female education is a key means of breaking the cycle of poverty.

Let's see the WaterWheel in action ...

Have a look at what Wello has achieved in 2013


I could not resist putting in this TEDx talk

The last 2 minutes of this video is a repeat of the animation above. 

I think you get the idea.
Here is the photo that started it all for me ...

NOW (as usual) IT'S UP TO YOU ...

Make your monthly donation now!!

1.  Find out more about the Wello WaterWheel from their website HERE or their Facebook site HERE

2. Go directly to make your donation to the Wello WaterWheel by following THIS LINK.

Don't forget to return to this page and let us know how much you have donated by putting the figure into the box on the right hand side of the page.


Month 31 ~ The Mayasi mistake

I can say without fear of contradiction that we have never sponsored a project quite like the one we are doing this month. We have predominantly focused on big picture issues of extreme global poverty, the world water crisis, empowering the education of minorities especially women but this month we will be supporting a small charity that works in a very "niche" area - Child Mental Health in the recovery from childhood trauma.

Mental health is one area of aid SORELY neglected and Mayasi aim to provide training, assessment and treatment in this niche area of development. Mayasi works directly with traumatised children in the assessment and early management phase, and also provide training and support to a variety of NGOs who provide ongoing aid and care to these children

What is the scope of the problem? ...

Many of you will know that I am currently in the USA on a snowboarding holiday and so I had developed the next project (Month 31 ~ January 23rd to February 22nd 2014) before I left and had it automated to commence on midnight of the 22nd. I had chosen a small grassroots charity from Melbourne Australia called Mayasi. What you have read above was the introduction I had written for the project.

Mayasi is essentially one guy and several other people who support him in his work. He provides his services and expertise to several different NGO's working in Cambodia and Thailand. He is a trained psychologist working in Child Mental Health assisting the recovery from childhood trauma of any type. I encourage you to check it out if you are at all interested; he has both a website ( and a Facebook page (Maysai on Facebook).

A couple of days ago I received an email from Mayasi explaining that he was sorry to inform me that he had decided that he was not going to continue the organisational arm of his work in Cambodia and Thailand and is now moving to withdraw his charity from the register. As such he and I feel that it would not be appropriate for the 50four50 to make donations to Mayasi in the coming month.

This has left me in a bit of a "pickle" as I cannot update the website or research a new charity to support in the short time left before the end of the current project especially when I am away from home and all the usual tools I use to create the website.

The solution I have devised has two options for your donations .......

  1. As we are still a long way from the target for the current month's project (Village Kids) you could make the month's donations to Village Kids again


  2. If you follow either myself or the 50four50 on FaceBook you would have seen me talk about the Go Tribe. This is essentially the same idea as the 50four50 group but with no group restrictions. The Go Tribe actually came about because of the 50four50 so be proud people! They also make a focus on a single charity each month and encourage people to donate. I suggest if you prefer not to donate a second time to Village Kids please go over to and make your donations there.
I apologise for any inconvenience and hope that it will not affect our chances to achieve the goal of the month.

NOW (as usual) IT'S UP TO YOU ...

Make your monthly donation now!!

1.  Find out more about the Go Tribe from their website HERE or their Facebook site HERE

2. Go directly to make your donation to the Go Tribe by following the link on THIS PAGE.

Don't forget to return to this page and let us know how much you have donated by putting the figure into the box on the right hand side of the page.


Month 30 ~ Village Kids

So last night my wife and I exchanged Christmas gifts with some really good friends of ours. I was given a set of clothes and school supplies from a tiny Non-Profit Charity called Village Kids. Well the clothes were not for me to wear but rather were for just one of many of the children living in poverty in Kycanga Village, Uganda. I was impressed and intrigued to learn that the clothes were handmade by a young girl now living in Uganda. This morning I started to do a little research as I do for all the projects we support and I found out that she is in fact a local Sunshine Coast girl currently living in Uganda. Well that was enough to inspire me to quickly change the charity I had line up for the month and instead support Village Kids over this Christmas month.

What can you tell me about "Village Kids" ...

Founded by a 13yr old girl from the Sunshine Coast, QLD now living in Uganda, Africa. Village Kids is a Not for Profit Social Enterprise Project, providing Clothing, School supplies and Sponsored Education to children living in circumstances of extreme poverty in Ugandan villages. The aim of this project is to brighten the lives of children in these villages, giving them a hope for the future.

In March this year Cirra-Sue and her family left their comfortable Sunshine Coast lifestyle and moved to Uganda to begin working with the impoverished in an attempt to make life better for as many as possible. Cirra-Sue soon, noticed that many of the children she met in the rural villages they visited were in need of new clothing and school supplies. In August 2013 she started the project Village Kids - she began designing and making clothing for the village children. Through this venture she brings a much needed possessions and a personal message of hope to children living in extreme poverty.  Cirra-Sue runs this project in her spare time around her school studies. She loves to see the smile on the children’s faces as she gives these packs out in the rural villages.

What is it that Village Kids actually bring to the people ...

At the moment the project is in it's infancy and is yet to obtain a Tax-Deductible status from the Australian Government (although this is hoped to be granted soon). There is basically 2 ways that Village Kids is aiding the rural Ugandan children ....... 

  1. With a gift of $5.50 a child receives:
         ~ Brand new clothing (Dress or Shorts) made by Cirra-Sue
  2.      ~ Educational Pack including:
                    ~ School Bag
                    ~ Exercise Book
                    ~ Pencil
                    ~ Rubber
                    ~ Ruler
  1. A gift of $240 allows for child's education to be sponsored for a year. This includes:
         ~ School fees for one year
         ~ 2 meals daily
         ~ School Uniforms (Day uniform, Sports Uniform, Shoes, Socks & Jumper)
         ~ Basic School Supplies
                    ~ Exercise Book
                    ~ Pencils
                    ~ Rubber
                    ~ Ruler
                    ~ Soap
The sponsored schooling provided by Village Kids is done through a partnership with Crane Christian Academy in the village of Kycanga, Raiki District, Uganda. Unfortunately I was unable to find a link to information about the school on the internet. Empowering International tells us that the Crane Christian Academy was founded by Juliete & Henry Kintu to educate the Orphaned and At Risk children of Kycanga village. Presently they educate 64 of these children with very, very basic resources.

Well there is not much more I can say ...

There is little else I can say about the project this month because there it is so small, it is so new and it just came into my knowing serendipitously.

I wish Cirra-Sue and Village Kids well - for one so young to be compelled to make a difference for the better in the world is worthy enough for our support for a month.

NOW (as usual) IT'S UP TO YOU ...

Make your monthly donation now!!

1.  Find out more about Village Kids and the other projects the family are running from their website HERE or their Facebook site HERE

2. Go directly to make your donation to Village Kids by following THIS LINK.

Don't forget to return to this page and let us know how much you have donated by putting the figure into the box on the right hand side of the page.


Month 29 ~ She's the First

Another month for the 50four50 and we turn our attention to what could be arguably the most world changing of all our projects so far.

~ Educating girls and women raises lifetime incomes for them, their families and their countries.
Educating girls and women fosters democracy and women's political activity.
Educating girls and women saves children's lives.
Educating adolescents and young people is critical for development.
Girls' education still lags behind schooling for boys.
High-level political leadership can raise public understanding and create conditions for girls' education in the developing world.

She’s the First sponsors girls’ education in developing nations, giving them the chance to become the first in their families to graduate from secondary school. To help fulfill this mission, She’s the First gives supporters a clearer understanding of complex global issues related to poverty. Harnessing technology and social media, She’s the First is committed to connecting sponsors and scholars around the world in innovative, mutually beneficial ways to foster mentorship, philanthropy, equality, and leadership. Ultimately, the student leaders and scholars become the change agents who break cycles of generational poverty and transform our world.

What is the problem? ...

10 facts about girls education that you may not know ...

  1. There are 32 million fewer girls than boys in primary school.
    (Education First: An Initiative of the United Nations Secretary General, 2012)
    A girl with an extra year of education can earn 20% more as an adult.
    (World Bank Education Statistics, 2012)

  2. 65 million girls are out of school globally.
    (EFA Global Monitoring Report, 2012)

    An educated mother is more than twice as likely to send her children to school. (UNICEF, 2010)

  3. There are still 31 million girls of primary school age out of school.
    (EFA Global Monitoring Report, 2012)
    10% fewer girls under the age of 17 would become pregnant in sub-Saharan Africa and South and West Asia if they had a primary education.
    (EFA Global Monitoring Report, 2012)

  4. There are 34 million female adolescents out of school globally.
    (EFA Global Monitoring Report, 2012)
    If India enrolled 1% more girls in secondary school, its GDP would rise by $5.5 billion. (World Health Organization, 2012)

  5. 14 million girls under 18 will be married this year. That’s 38 thousand today – or 13 girls in the last 30 seconds. (UNFPA, 2012)
    Girls with secondary education are 6 times less likely to be married as children. (International Center for Research on Women, 2006)

  6. In a single year, an estimated 150 million girls were victims of sexual violence. (UNIFEM, 2011)

  7. 50 % of sexual assaults in the world victimize girls under the age of 15. (UNFPA, 2005)
    Education empowers women to overcome discrimination. Girls and young women who are educated have greater awareness of their rights, and greater confidence and freedom to make decisions that affect their lives, improve their health, and boost their work prospects.
    (Education First: An Initiative of the United Nations Secretary General, 2012)

  8. In developing countries, the #1 cause of death for girls 15-19 is childbirth. (World Health Organization, 2012)
    Child deaths would be cut in half if all women had a secondary education, saving 3 million lives. And all maternal deaths would be reduced by two-thirds if each mother completed primary education.
    (EFA Global Monitoring Report, 2012)

  9. Two-thirds of the 792 million illiterate adults in the world are female.  
    (EFA Global Monitoring Report, 2012)
    A literate mother has a 50% higher chance that her child will survive past the age of 5.   (UNESCO, 2011)

  10. There are 9.9 million girls out of school in Nigeria, Pakistan, and Ethiopia. (World Bank Education Statistics, 2012)
    By attaining a secondary education, a Pakistani woman can earn 70 percent what men earn, as opposed to only 51 percent with a primary education.   (EFA Global Monitoring Report, 2012)

So how does She's the First work ...

So it is easy ......... Basically She’s the First arranges for your money to sponsor a girls education. You can either donate directly or organise some sort of fundraising event the proceeds of which you give to She’s the First for allocation to sponsor girls education projects in one of 11 different countries.

The results so far

  • Number of countries impacted = 11   
  • Number of scholars sponsored = 289   
  • Total years of education = 615

Find out more about the ways in which She’s the First educates these girls and where the money goes by looking through the information on their website HERE 

NOW (as usual) IT'S UP TO YOU ...

Make your monthly donation now!!

1.  Find out more about She's the First from their website HERE or their Facebook site HERE

2. Go directly to make your donation to She's the First by following THIS LINK.

Don't forget to return to this page and let us know how much you have donated by putting the figure into the box on the right hand side of the page.

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