Africa Bridge https://africabridge.org Fri, 30 Jun 2017 14:33:22 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.5 https://africabridge.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/cropped-Screen-Shot-2016-04-26-at-1.02.45-PM-32x32.png Africa Bridge https://africabridge.org 32 32 NBA to Play in Africa https://africabridge.org/nba-to-play-in-africa/ Mon, 19 Jun 2017 18:56:11 +0000 https://africabridge.org/?p=8768

Dirk Nowitzki, the career scoring leader among international players, will be one of the captains for the NBA’s Africa Game on Aug. 5.

The league and the National Basketball Players Association announced Monday that the Dallas Mavericks star will be a co-captain of Team World along with Charlotte Hornets All-Star Kemba Walker. Team Africa will be captained by the Lakers’ Luol Deng, who is from the South Sudan, and Atlanta’s Thabo Sefolosha, whose father is from South Africa.

Nowitzki is a 13-time All-Star. Last season, the German became the first international player with 30,000 career points.

The game will take place in Johannesburg. A full roster of players and coaches will be announced at a later date.

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Welcome to America! https://africabridge.org/welcome-to-america/ Fri, 02 Jun 2017 21:15:06 +0000 https://africabridge.org/?p=8763 Overall Fred’s (our Program Director from Tanzania) visit was a great success! Having him here to work with Carl, Lillian and myself was an enormous benefit. His meeting at Stafford and Riverside schools was wonderful for him and for the kids . I know the donors were very pleased with him and for having the opportunity to meet him at Stoel Rives. The communication between the US and Tanzania has been vastly improved.

Many thanks to Ellen and John, Carl and Joy for hosting him in their homes.  Much thanks also to Katie and Kevin for dinners and excursions and to Mark  for arranging the space for our donor event. Thanks as well to Barry for making the trip and for speaking so eloquently at the event.

The not so great- Fred, my daughter and her boyfriend had gone to a show Wednesday night. Thieves smashed a window in my car and stole Fred’s backpack which had two laptops, a phone, cash, his passport and all of his identity papers from Tanzania. We waited for 2.5 hours for the police to show up but nothing was retrieved. Understandably, we are all upset.

Fred and Carl decided to see if they could find Fred’s documents in bushes or trash cans -they went up to the crime scene and spent about four hours looking. During that time they encountered several homeless people who tried to offer assistance. As they were about to give up they spotted the woman at the homeless camp they had seen last night, she was going through Fred’s documents!! They approached her and lo and behold…his passport, visa, drivers license, health insurance card were all there!!! There was a possibility she could recover the laptops (for a fee).

Carl and Fred were not as successful last night in their second effort to recover Fred’s laptops and phone.  The person they received the documents from was supposed to call Carl or meet them Thursday night but was a no show. Fred and Carl will canvass the area one more time this evening, but think the thieves have rented a room somewhere so the chances of finding them on the street are slim.  Wish them luck!

Deb Saunders

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Donor Appreciation Event was a huge success! https://africabridge.org/8757-2/ Mon, 22 May 2017 20:16:57 +0000 https://africabridge.org/?p=8757 Over 70 people gathered on the 30th floor of the Stoel Rives building in Portland, Oregon Saturday, May 20th for our Donor Appreciation Event. The views were breathtaking, the weather perfect and the atmosphere electric.

Deb Saunders, our Executive Director, facilitated the evening with enthusiasm and grace. We heard from our Board Chair, Katie Wire, our Founder, Barry Childs and our new Tanzanian Program Director visiting the United States for the first time, Fred Urembo.

Katie expressed her excitement and appreciation for the current state of Africa Bridge.

Barry shared his experiences from the inception of Africa Bridge to present day. Barry used an analogy of a wisteria plant. At first, the wisteria needs to be tied to an arbor until it is strong enough to support itself. Barry was Africa Bridge’s arbor for many years. Now that Africa Bridge has become self-supporting through the excellent work of the board and staff, Barry can sit back and enjoy the beauty of his creation.

Fred expressed appreciation from everyone in Tanzania who has been touched by Africa Bridge. He discussed the contrast between gardening here in the United States as a hobby or past time with gardening in Tanzania as a way to stay alive. He also compared the cost of a cup of coffee here to buying a chicken which again sustains life in Tanzania.

Teresa Sullivan from Mango African Safaris also spoke about her relationship with Africa Bridge. She discussed the upcoming safari to Tanzania this fall. (See Events tab from the menu for details.)

Then evening was concluded with the drawing for the raffle for an overnight stay in a stunning waterfront condo in Seattle with a $100 gift certificate to Safri Njema Restaurant. The winner was June Blout!

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Africa Bridge Experience by Susan Fries https://africabridge.org/africa-bridge-experience-by-susan-fries/ Fri, 14 Apr 2017 20:17:37 +0000 https://africabridge.org/?p=8660 Exotic and moving are the two words the come to mind.

Imagine your airplane is landing on two parallel dirt paths in an open woodland, “terminal” is a small sign for Coastal Airlines nailed to a tree.  And the sign is spattered with hippopotamus dung. And you are met by a guide shuttling you to the lodge 20 minutes away, with giraffe and elephant sightings along the route.

safari picture

Imagine being in a village so remote the nearest clinic is a 3-hour walk away, the nearest primary school an hour walk for its young students, where most villagers live in a one room hut with dirt floors.  Yet some of the avocados raised in the village orchards are sold in Europe; the milk from village cows is made into yogurt you eat for breakfast on an international flight out of Dar-es-Salaam.

Imagine being an honored guest, sitting on the only visible chairs, greeted by cow-tail waving dancers and an energetic band of assorted drummers and kazoo players, women singing call-and-response messages in haunting harmonies.  And after the requisite speeches and formalities, sharing a meal prepared by the village women – rice, free-range chicken, avocado and tomato salad, the most succulent pineapple and bananas imaginable.

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Imagine staying in a lodge so elegant the ebony tree trunks holding up the ceiling beams each are carved with a special image by the craftsman who placed the beam.  Where over breakfast you can view hippos wading across the shallow river and exotic birds building dozens of nests in branches overhanging the banks. Where each guest suite has its own plunge pool for a cooling dip before an afternoon rest.  And dinner features meals that meet fine dining experiences in any major city.

safari picture

Such are just a few of my memories from our recent Tanzanian experience with Africa Bridge and Papa Barry, as the villagers so affectionately call its founder.  All six of us visitors chose to add additional experiences in Tanzania before linking with Africa Bridge.  Greg and daughter Mary hiked Mt. Meru; Marty and Margaret from Seattle, along with Lew and me from Portland opted for more safari in the Serengeti.  But the absolute highlight for me was the time in the villages supported by Africa Bridge, and to better understand the invaluable support provided for the most vulnerable children in Tanzania, indeed some of the most vulnerable in the world.

As someone lucky enough to have traveled extensively, my Tanzanian experience is definitely at the top of my best cultural and nature-focused trips ever! Thank you, Barry, for all you do and for sharing your beloved Tanzania with us.

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https://africabridge.org/8632-2/ Thu, 09 Mar 2017 21:31:36 +0000 https://africabridge.org/?p=8632

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New Program Director for Africa Bridge Based in Tanzania! https://africabridge.org/new-program-director-for-africa-bridge-based-in-tanzania/ Fri, 03 Feb 2017 17:47:12 +0000 https://africabridge.org/?p=8600 AB Press Release 1.19.2017

We hired our first Tanzanian based Program Director – the first paid program director in our history! Frederick Urembo brings a wealth of experience in Tanzania having served as Director of Community Development Projects for The Salvation Army for 12 years. Fred will work with our fantastic AB staff team to further enhance, grow and support our program broadening our impact on the lives of vulnerable children.

Ellen Worcester, who has served as our volunteer Program Director for the last two and a half years, will now take on the role of Research Director. She will focus on securing grants, monitoring and evaluation. Her efforts have been truly outstanding in delivering the program model and we are grateful she will continue in this important role.

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What do you think? https://africabridge.org/what-do-you-think/ Thu, 14 Jul 2016 19:49:11 +0000 https://africabridge.org/?p=8384 PLEASE HELP US IMPROVE

Thank you for being part of the Africa Bridge family. Whether you give in time, talent and/or treasure, you help create sustainable improvement in vulnerable children’s lives.

We would like to better understand your connection with Africa Bridge and how we can more effectively communicate with you. As a quick refresher, earlier this year, we shared program highlights from 2015 and our latest Annual Impact Report. You also heard about a safari raffle, received invitations to events and were asked to support fundraising efforts. Along with sending you progress updates from current wards, we welcomed a new executive director, announced a major grant from Vibrant Village Foundation and launched our development program in Kisondela Ward. Reflecting on those communications, we would value your feedback on what information is most meaningful to you and how we could do better moving forward.

Please take a few minutes to respond to a quick 10-question survey. Your responses will be anonymous, but please send us a message at info@africabridge.org if you’d like to discuss anything further.

Start the survey here: SurveyMonkey. It will close on July 31 at the end of the day.

Asante sana!

Students at Desks

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Our First Donor Conference Call https://africabridge.org/our-first-donor-conference-call/ Fri, 29 Apr 2016 04:52:11 +0000 https://africabridge.org/?p=8295

A special update…

 

On April 11th, Africa Bridge’s donors were among the first to hear our exciting news about new grant funding and new executive leadership. In our first-ever donor conference call, we highlighted key program accomplishments in 2015, announced $500,000 in new grant funding from Vibrant Village Foundation, introduced Kisondela Ward as our newest program beneficiary, and welcomed new staff, including Executive Director Deborah Saunders. If you weren’t able to join us live, you can still listen to the audio here.

 

At under 20 minutes, we hope you’ll find the recorded update and Q&A informative and interesting. We sure enjoyed sharing this information about Africa Bridge’s next steps in serving Tanzania’s vulnerable children. A gracious thank you again to all who were able to join us for the call earlier this month!

 

Please leave us a reply below if you have any questions or comments.

 

A reminder…

Make Mom Smile on Mother's Day

 

Mother’s Day is less than two weeks away (May 8) and Father’s Day isn’t too far behind (June 19). Did you know that when you shop at smile.amazon.com, Amazon donates 0.5% of your eligible purchases to Africa Bridge? It’s the same great shopping experience with the same products, prices and service, but with an added benefit to our organization. As you shop for the wonderful mothers and fathers in your life, you can also help support vulnerable mothers, fathers and children in Tanzania. Ready, set, shop!

 

 

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Habari Njema! https://africabridge.org/habari-njema/ Tue, 12 Apr 2016 16:33:36 +0000 https://africabridge.org/?p=7497 Good News about Growth at Africa Bridge

Africa Bridge has two exciting and important developments to share with you – the hiring of a new executive director and the receipt of our largest grant to date.

New Executive DirectorDeb

Just over 15 years ago, Africa Bridge was founded out of Barry Childs’ personal experience and passion for the plight of orphaned children living in southern Tanzania. His dedication to creating a sustainable solution for extreme child poverty, resulting in large part from the devastation of HIV/AIDS in the country, has now benefited more than 6,000 vulnerable children and their families. When Barry stepped back from daily operations in 2014, Africa Bridge began the transition to an organization run by a paid professional staff. Following an expansive search, we are happy to announce that Deborah Saunders has joined us as Executive Director and is well poised to lead the organization toward its next stage of growth.

Deborah has an extensive background in nonprofit management, and was most recently the president and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ocean State in Rhode Island. She will drive all Africa Bridge operations from Oregon. Her leadership skills and fundraising experience will help us grow and maximize our effectiveness in working with vulnerable children in Tanzania. You can read more about Deborah here.

New Grant from Vibrant Village Foundation

VVF_Logo_CMYKAfrica Bridge has been awarded the largest grant in its history – $500,000 from Vibrant Village Foundation. Over the next five years, these funds will help support six villages in a new area, Kisondela Ward. These villages will join the 28 others where our five-year development model has proven successful in breaking the cycle of poverty for thousands of people.

The grant continues our collaboration with Vibrant Village Foundation, which has also invested in our work in Lufingo Ward. The organization’s focus on the potential of communities around the world makes Vibrant Village Foundation a strong partner. You can learn more about the foundation at www.vibrantvillage.org and read our joint news announcement here.

Kisondela Ward has a population of about 12,000 people, with an estimated 1,400 children considered vulnerable. Similar to other wards with which Africa Bridge has partnered, the area is isolated, electricity is limited, water is collected from streams, and schools are deteriorating. Tanzania has one of the highest rates of HIV/AIDS infection, and combined with limited access to health care, the incidence in Kisondela is higher than the national average. With this generous funding from Vibrant Village Foundation, we will enable families to better care for vulnerable children by providing start-up loans, establishing farm co-ops, delivering extensive training, implementing social services, and opening access to education and health care. In doing so, we will also help change the future for the entire community.

With talented leadership in the U.S. and the gift of funding from Vibrant Village Foundation, 2016 promises to be an amazing year!

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Africa Bridge Releases 2015 Annual Report https://africabridge.org/africa-bridge-releases-2015-annual-report/ Wed, 30 Mar 2016 20:11:11 +0000 https://africabridge.org/?p=7479 Africa Bridge is pleased to announce the release of its 2015 annual report.  We’re super excited to tell you about the outstanding results we have achieved in the villages of Lufingo and Mpombo Wards.  Read it Here!

 

 

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