In our new year (01/01/2003) I received the following wonderful email from our Board Members which made my eyes full of tears. Do you know why my eyes are full of tears: tears of happiness? I never dreamed and thought that these all great things will happen on behalf of FOVC for the poorest children in Ethiopia. When I started Friends of Orphans and Vulnerable Children (FOVC) four years ago things which I had plenty were hope, belief, commitment and love to help poorest orphans. Thanks to FOVC’s hard working Board Members, Friends of Orphans and Vulnerable Children succeeded these all wonderful achievements. I have many million thanks for Lory, Dave and Stacey and their families and friends for making these things happen for FOVC on behalf of poorest and vulnerable children!
How are things in Soddo and Shanto? We cannot wait to be there! Thank you for your update this week. I wonder if you have any recent pictures to share of the construction site, or of any recent happenings in Shanto? Also, as you prepare to welcome the new children in to FOVC’s program, would you be able to send their photos and basic information? And please don’t forget: save some orphanage-building work for Team Tasfa! This is soooo important to many in our group.
Here are some of the things we have accomplished for FOVC recently:
1. Team Tasfa paid for our in-country travel (we are using a company called Spring Ethiopia Tours, http://www.springethiopiatours.com for our in-country travel and to arrange our hotels)! We are also going to stay one night at the Sabana Lodge at Lake Langano, so we paid for that as well. Since we are such a big group, it seemed that hiring Spring Ethiopia’s vehicles would be the most reliable way to get us to the Sidama region.
2. I opened a bank account in the U.S. We think this is the best way to accumulate funds for FOVC, and then to get the funds wired over to Ethiopia.
3. We registered the US charity for FOVC. It is called US-FOVC Ethiopia.
4. We also obtained a 501c3 number for US-FOVC. We are still in the early stages of completing the difficult 501c3 process, however. Many, many thanks to Stacey for leading us through this huge effort!
6. I had a long conference call with Sharon Bonnett, who, as you know, is the social worker who is working on the sponsorship program. Sharon has lots of great ideas and she is working hard to put things in place for the FOVC children! With your current children, and the 12 children you want to add this year, and the 21 children the local government has asked FOVC to help, we think there will soon be 57 children, is that correct? We believe we will be able to get them sponsored.
7. The local adoptive family held their fundraiser last night, and raised over $1600US for FOVC!
8. As generous people begin to financially support FOVC, there is a lot of tax and record-keeping paperwork for us to do here in the U.S. I am figuring out how to support these aspects of the organizations.
9. The church of two of Team Tasfa’s members has donated $1500US to FOVC.
10. I am communicating often with EOR as they plan their big fundraiser and as we generally partner with them. For Ethiopian Christmas, EOR is preparing small backpacks full of gifts and supplies for all of the FOVC children. Team Tasfa will deliver them. Will 36 backpacks be the correct number when we arrive?
I think this is all for now.
Happy New Year and God bless!
Lory, Dave and Stacey