So, this is the world of fund raising. As I start out on my rather wobbly wheels, I am realizing it is definitely NOT the easiest thing in the world to do.
I am not a big, many-peopled, paper-pushing organization. I am just me, a midwife and a mother with an idea of how things could be shifted from how they are to better. And somehow I am going to wander around and convince people that, although they do not know me, and although I am not a big fancy organization, that they should donate to BUS FARE BABIES.
Its going to be an interesting 6 weeks.
Already I have managed to rope a young job seeking Irish lass (thank you Charlotte) into being my temporary P.A. In between job hunting, she is now making lists and coming up with all sorts of good ideas as to how we could get the word out and the money in. (If anyone has a job for her, please let me know.)
I am convinced that there is money available, its just a matter of finding the right people, explaining the need and having them see what Bus Fare Babies is doing and why they should contribute. I know there is a world recession, but there must still be a way for wealthier individuals to donate money to create better conditions for people living in the rural areas like where I live.
Obviously in my line of work, I think priority should be given to women and babies. In the words of Malcom X: " To educate a man is to educate an individual, but to educate a woman is to educate a nation." It is impossible, however, to look at women and babies in isolation. I am realising that all social issues need to be addressed if women and babies are to be cared for.
I can not just focus on women and their pregnancies and births and ignore the devestating HIV rate. In our area 35% of the pregnant population are HIV positive. In order to serve women well, this HIV level has to be addressed. In order for women and children to be safe, the alcoholism and abuse issues have to be addressed. In order for women and children to be healthy, food issues and growing vegetables has to be addressed.
So, as I said earlier, fundraising is not easy but it is just one of many things that just has to get done for us to move from how things are now to how they could be. Luckily I was born with a permanent silver lining to my clouds. It is this silver lining that I cling onto, and that keeps the impossible feeling possible.
I am in London for 6 weeks and I came here with all of £300 pounds last Sunday. Fortunately I have been accommodated by 2 wonderful midwives and their families (thank you Odette and Nyree and families). I have come to do some courses and to fundraise for the birth centre. The first course in Neonatal life support I completed on Monday and the other in Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics for dealing with emergencies is in September. I am doing these courses as I would like to do workshops for the nurses and midwives in the local clinics and hospitals, current practices with regards to how to resuscitate babies and how to manage emergencies.
Immediately, I am looking to raise enough money to keep the centre going for the rest of this year. To sustain the project i need £2000 pounds a month. This amount will cover all staff (cleaner, gardener, village health worker and HIV education team of 4), materials and transport as well as water and electricity for a month. So I need to somehow fund raise £10 000 for 2010. Once we are more established, it will be easier to generate funding from bigger organizations but in the interim we really are needing individuals who are willing to contribute. To contribute please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org or click the Donate top right of page to donate by Paypal.