IOU an M.O.U.
Hello all! Lauren here. Once again, we owe you an apology for the extreme delay in posting the last couple of blog posts. Unfortunately, as I lacked Internet access for the better part of July, I was unable to write this part of the Thursday blog post, the complement to Cindy’s previous post, CERI: Cases and Camaraderie. Rest assured, now that this post has been written, we are entirely caught up with blog posts, and it is just a case of adding pictures to the necessary posts (Incidentally, I apologize for the lack of pictures in this post – drafting an agreement doesn’t lend itself to many photo ops) .
Without further ado, I am here to recap the part of Thursday, June 28 that Briana and I spent working on the M.O.U. with Melecio, while Cindy was off with Judy attending the CERI meeting.
For those of you who don’t know, an M.O.U. is a “Memorandum of Understanding” between a GlobeMed chapter and its partner, wherein the fundraising for the next year is estimated, and a project is roughly outlined. This past year, our goal was to raise $10,000 for ASPAT, to contribute to its goal of building modular homes for 8 patients who needed to be separated from their families (so as to lower the risk of spreading T.B.) and to provide 20 food baskets to patients in need. Although we were unable to meet our fundraising goal, those of you who have been reading the blog religiously know that we packed approximately 10 food baskets while we were in Peru, and provided the money to build 8 model homes.
This year, Briana, Melecio, and I decided that projects such as modular homes / food baskets were really only temporary measures: they alleviated some of the patient’s poverty, but obviously only for a short period of time (for example, food baskets are only provided for the first six months of treatment). After a long brainstorming session on the underlying causes of T.B., Melecio proposed that our project focus on educating patients and teaching them business skills. To that end, we once again decided to set our fundraising goal at $10,000, which will provide two rounds of three-day business seminars to 15 promising patients (culled from about 40 interviewees), and potentially some start-up money for patients to use to actually start their enterprises. With any luck, these seminars will be organized by next summer, when the GrOW team will be present to attend. Any additional money we might manage to raise will once again go towards food baskets.
Melecio has a more in-depth draft detailing exactly how much he thinks everything will cost (renting venues, providing food, paying lecturers, etc) which I don’t have on me right now, but he is planning on emailing it to us soon. Cindy, Briana, and I were all very excited to hear about this new project, which we think really has the potential to permanently change peoples’ lives for the better. We hope you all share our enthusiasm in the coming year!