|Mission Statement: To enhance knowledge and skills within rural communities and to promote the exchange of information and best practices through education, mentorship, advocacy and strategic partnerships for social, cultural and economic development. We seek to break the cycle of poverty and empower communities to take charge of their own development.|
|Board of Directors
Chair: Shelby Y
Members: Amy E, Beatrice K, Beatrice A N,
Jim H, Julie C, Julie K T, Lorraine S, Rebecca H.
Advisors: Anita B, Ineke C, Kara L,
Layli M, Lisa B, Rita R, Ritu S, Sallie D, Sumru E, Susanne S
|PCE Foundation is a Ugandan Nonprofit corporation (#S.5914/9510) in partnership with Tax exempt Charities in Australia, Europe and the United States.|
What to expect from this Report
FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
TWENTY fifteen was a very special year for our organization. We kicked off with 16 of the RGCM mentees in their High school vocation, after sitting for the National examinations. By August, they had all been accepted into various colleges, universities and technical schools. They are currently pursuing careers in different fields, along with 10 other students who were already pursuing their post secondary education. Our Library project was barely on the slab level in February of last year, but shot up to the window level by June. Our farming initiative was boosted by the passion fruit and pineapple crops; and the sponsored students also became involved in this project. We had a number of overseas visitors who impacted our community in various positive ways. And we were excited to be given a grant by the MIVA/OneMen Organization for a super custom van in August which has made our transportation and projects coordination much easier and less expensive.
Pearl Community Empowerment Foundation continues to grow with the support and help of individuals from around the globe. We appreciate the contributions from all of our generous supporters; with your help, we have been able to achieve a number of goals as well as begin some exciting new initiatives.
At this time, we have 84 individual sponsors of the RGCM students; 15 from Australia; 36 from Europe (including Austria, Germany, Kosovo, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Sweden and United Kingdom) and 33 from the United States and Canada. Many of you not only support the students you mentor and sponsor, but also contribute to other projects of the PCE Foundation both financially and through other means. We are so grateful!
We are, of course, still a long way from achieving the outcomes we seek. Success will require more hard work and a redoubling of our commitment to service and collaboration in the spirit of the PCE Foundation values and mission, your commitment to support and the values of our larger rural communities and families we support. But I heartily commend the staff and volunteers who have helped bring this year’s success, and humbly thank all the members, contributors, and donors for their support in helping us reach this point.
Programs, Projects & Events
RURAL GIRL CHILD MENTORSHIP PROGRAM (RGCM)
L-R Some of the College students and some of the secondary school girls.
The RGCM project maintained 108 sponsored students. Each year we are amazed by the progress made by each of our beneficiaries. 26 of our students are currently pursing post-secondary education in various universities, colleges and institutions. The table below explains their different education levels.
No. of Students
|Accounting and Finance||Degree||1||2019|
|Adult and Community Education||Degree||1||2016|
|Human Resource Management||Diploma||1||2016|
|Nursery and Midwifery||Certificate||1||2018|
|Secondary School||UCE / UACE||82||Varies|
|Total Number of Students||108|
THE AMOR VILLAGE LIBRARY AND COMMUNITY CENTER
At this time last year, the building was barely at the foundation level. Due to the fundraising efforts of Joana D, and other contributions by Lorraine S, Amy E, Janeane A, Sharon G, and other contributors, the Amor Community Library and Hall construction moved close to the beam level by July of 2015. Since then, the project has been on hold while awaiting additional funding.
THE PORTLAND NURSERY AND PRIMARY SCHOOL
In 2012, after witnessing the success of the Rural Girl Child Mentorship program, the people of Amor Village came together and founded the Portland Nursery and Primary School to provide an education to their young children without the need for them to walk miles to the nearest school or live away from their families.
At the beginning, the school’s five classes were held in two huts and under a mango tree. When Maarten B from Holland visited the community in 2014, he saw the need to build a schoolhouse and began raising funds. By the end of the year,a six-classroom block with an office was in place.
The community’s vision and actions towards acquiring a Nursery and Primary school has led us in a new strategic direction – to build a complete school complex consisting of Nursery, Primary, Secondary and Vocational schools, and of course incorporating the community Library. Although constructing and staffing this complex will create a significant financial burden initially, we feel that ultimately it will allow us to provide an excellent education for the children without having to take them to the schools in the major cities. In addition, we will be able to educate a far greater number of both girls and boys while keeping them involved in their community and home life. It is hoped that in time, the school’s graduates will apply their knowledge, talent and skills to help strengthen the community and improve the quality of life for those who live there.
Sumru E, a Senior Research Scientist at Wellesley Centers for Women in Massachusetts, USA, donated 100 passion fruit seedlings in June 2013. The crop was harvested from April through July, and brought in $338. Pineapple plants donated by Melinda N last year are growing well, and should begin bearing fruit this year. A mango tree planting project was undertaken by all the supported students during the December-January holidays last year. It was required that every student plant a minimum of 10 mango tree seedlings in and around their homes. Based upon the data collection report by Agolla Mary Sylvia, one of our college mentees who was been doing her internship with us, there were a total of 285 mango seedlings planted in 92 homes by the end of May. The highest number planted per mentee was seventy. Thirteen of the mentees were excused from planting mangos due to reasons such as inadequate land and drought. In December, Barbara Rintala donated an additional 159 mango tree seedlings, 11 orange tree seedlings,and 200 flower trees for the Portland school in Amor village.
LIFE SKILLS AND OTHER PROJECTS
In December, we received a team of six Americans of the Mighty Fingers project. The founder and CEO, Kelly Sullivan, taught her painting art to 30 girls and 3 boys. Other team members included Kara L who taught writing skills to 43 girls; Toni T who trained 3 of the RGCM girls in video and photography, and Jamie and Barbara who taught 12 girls knitting skills. Mighty Fingers Project is initiating an art curricullum in Portland Nursery and Primary school. Kelly believes that passion for art can easily be developed in children from a tender age. The Mighty Fingers Project teaches adolescent girls painting skills globally.
RURAL PEER SAVINGS AND LOANS
This program promotes savings, micro-loans and entrepreneurial spirit among the mothers whose daughters and sons are in the sponsorship program. The mothers themselves created three savings and empowerment groups with 30 members in each group (Mar, Kisangala and Siem groups).
These groups started saving in January and two groups shared their savings and interest in December. The interest is raised from the people who borrow from the savings, which is usually at a rate of 10%. The Mar group shared out having saved $251 and earned interest of $98, totaling to $349. Kisangala group saved $108 and earned $9 in interest, totaling $117, while the Siem group is still waiting for some of their group members to clear their debts before they share out. According to the Chairperson of the Parents’ Committee, Scovia K, the Kisangala and Siem groups had members who were not very committed. This had an impact on their success. The women hope to start small businesses and or increase their farming initiatives starting in early 2016.
MENTOR OVERSEAS OUTREACH AND CULTURAL EXCHANGE
This project includes mentor/volunteer visits and the Pen Pal/Letter Exchange initiatives. The rich cultural exchange is transforming our cultures and beliefs and empowering the community, to include drawing men into supporting their families, and supporting community development while helping the community understand the benefit of education. Domestic violence used to be a big issue in this community before our intervention; today most of our beneficiary families are totally violence free.
This year we had eight mentors and volunteers who visited with us (Leonie, Natasja, Elles, Barbara, Jamie, Kelly, Kara and Toni). Each of these visitors impacted and empowered our community in unique ways while gaining rich cultural experiences of their own. Some of them are returning in 2016! We welcome volunteers, including non-mentors, who would like to do short term projects with us. We understand that financial constraints may limit your travel, but invite everyone to visit with us and see for yourselves the sort of community and people you are helping to develop a better future.
AMOR VILLAGE CHILDREN’S PARTY
PCE Foundation, in conjuction with the Portland school, organized the first ever children’s party in Amor village. This was aimed at giving children the opportunity to have fun among themselves, eat a good meal, eat candies, and blow balloons together. This was a very special event for the children, who had never experienced anything like it. Over 400 children attended, although we managed to register only 380 before the sheer number of children flooding the venue from all corners overwhelmed our efforts. Many thanks to Alicia C., Ellen S., Lorraine S., Karen L., Sallie D. and our Wellesley Centers for Women family who donated the money for enough food to feed all the children, and to Jeremy C. for donating 400 bottles of drinks. Thanks for the candies and the balloons go to our friends from around the globe: the BOCEP (Bor Orphanage and Community Education Project) girls (Sharon S, Susan S, Susan O), Kara L, Laura F, Lea E, Lisa B, Melinda N, and our WCW family. Every child went home with a balloon and lots of candies; they all went back to their homes with lots of happiness and joy.
Our thanks to the organizers of the Amor Village Children’s party 2015 and to all of the people who helped make it such a success. We look forward to repeating this exciting event on December 26th, 2016, and invite anyone who would like to take part to get in touch.
THE CAR GRANT
In August, we received a transport grant from MIVA/OneMen, a Netherlands-based organization that supports pioneers working in grassroots organizations in Africa, Asia and Latin America with transport and means of communication, such as cars, motorbikes, bicycles, boats, lorries, radio masts, internet connections and computers. With the funds from this grant, we purchased a super custom van, which is currently helping a great deal in transporting students to school, bringing the mentees’ parents to visit them in Kampala, taking those with serious illnesses within the communities to the distant hospital, and facilitating the coordination of all the projects under the PCE Foundation within the different communities.
CHRISTMAS PRESENTS TO THE RGCM MENTEES AND THEIR FAMILIES
A number of mentors and sponsors wish to provide gifts for the families they work with, especially at Christmas time. We provide suggestions and also assist with the purchase when appropriate. This year, sponsors donated 15 piglets, 2 goats, 15 solar panels, cloth, money, and other gifts.
We distributed these items to the respective families who were very appreciative of the generosity of those who are working to help give their children a better future.
In our email update of March 2016, we will share more the photos, and impact stories of/from the families and sponsors who donated Christmas gifts to their sponsored students.
Challenges for 2016 and Beyond
PARTNERING PROVIDES OPPORTUNITIES
In 2016 and beyond, we are looking into building partnerships with local, global and international NGOs for capacity building, team building, programs development and merging in order to create sustainable solutions with and for the people at the grassroots.
Based on our vision, “to have empowered communities that can take charge of their own development.” all our projects are community-driven solutions to community challenges. This fosters the implementation of need-based projects that are not only relevant and appropriate, but also sustainable. In line with this principle, PCE Foundation has identified community needs that are being developed into fully-fledged projects. Some of our goals for the next 5 years include:
- Finishing the Amor Community Library and Community Hall. The next fundraising campaign will begin in early 2016. The goal is to finish the project by June 2016.
- Constructing a school complex consisting of nursery, primary, secondary and vocational schools in order to benefit the wider community.
- Finding sponsors for those deserving students who are currently without educational support.
- Strengthening the health, agriculture and micro-finance projects.
GIVING US CONSTRUCTIVE FEEDBACK
Thank you so much for taking time to read through our Annual report. We hope that it has given you an idea of all we have accomplished this year. PCE Foundation and the RGCM project have grown incredibly over the last few years due to your support. We value your suggestions and feedback, and hope you will continue to be a part of this life-changing organization.
My family, your mentees’ families, the community, RGCM and PCE Foundation team wish you a prosperous 2016!
Beatrice Achieng Nas
STATEMENT OF ACTIVITIES
|Grants, Gifts & Contributions||85,307.36|
|RGCM (School Fees/Tuition/Other)||46,121.00|
|Transport and Maintenance Activities||7,415.94|
|Library and School Construction||15,409.00|
|National Examination Registration||1,191.25|
|Farming and Agriculture||250.59|
|Car Grant (MIVA/Onemen Organization)||5,764.06|
|Fundraising and Community Event Expenses|
|Thanksgiving event for Girls’ Education||273.56|
|Amor Village Children’s Party||585.19|
|Public Relations and Media||171.88|
|General Office Expenses||2,108.13|
|Postage and Communcations||1,275.00|
|Board, School and Community Meetings||2,605.94|
We owe two secondary schools USD 2,546.10. This is the school fees balances demanded of the girls who do not yet have sponsors but do attend school.
|Girls (age 12-24)||105|
|Boys (age 12-24)||3|
|Parents & Guardians||216|
|Girls (age 12-24)||1104|
|Boys (age 12-24)||897|
|Parents & Guardians||830|
Since our founding, PCE Foundation has been run by a wonderful group of dedicated volunteers. The following people are the core volunteer management team behind its operations and success:
- Annabelle H
- Anthony O
- Beatrice A.N
- Connie A
- Francis O
- Jeremy C
- Joana D
- Joseph N
- Joseph O
- Josephine A
- Maarten B
- Nigel & Rebecca K
- Nociata A
- Scovia K
- Ted & Lindsey C