Need a Last Minute Gift Idea? Send a Donation Gift Card that Benefits Village Earth

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Need a unique last minute gift idea? This year, make a donation in honor of your friend, relative, coworker, neighbor etc. and they’ll receive an attractive custom printed gift card. You can choose to have Globalgiving.org mail a high quality paper card or you can print or email it for no additional charge.

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To give a gift card, simply choose the “Gift or In-Honor Of” tab below the donate button on any of Village Earth’s projects pages on Globalgiving.org (see list below).

 

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Choose your method of delivery and amount and then you can choose one of three card design options.

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Below is a list of Village Earth’s projects listed on Globalgiving.org.

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Village Earth Honors International Human Rights Day, Wednesday Dec. 12th, 2014.

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The UN General Assembly proclaimed 10 December as Human Rights Day in 1950, to bring to the attention ‘of the peoples of the world’ the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as the common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations.

Today, Village Earth honors International Human Rights Day with a reaffirmation of our commitment to the defense and protection of the rights endowed in Humans and all living creators. A human rights-based approach is at the core of what we do. This means doing more than making an bad situation a little better or helping people do more with less. Instead, it means engaging with community in a dialogue about the root causes of poverty and oppression and working side-by-side to transform them.  Furthermore, this approach, this philosophy, recognizes the importance of local leaders and their organizations as the primary actors in change, rather than outside NGOs, academics, or experts. We believe a human rights-based approach must also consider justice, the intergenerational impacts of oppression (both material and psychological), and the necessity for governments, corporations and individuals to adequately and respectfully remedy past wrongs.

Read more about Village Earth’s Approach.

Order Tanka Bar and Support Lakota Bison Restoration and Land Recovery Efforts

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This Holiday Season, give the gift the healthy, delicious buffalo meat products produced by Native American Natural Foods, a 100% Native American owned and operated business based on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Even better, 20%  of each order will support Lakota Bison Restoration and Land Recovery/Restoration Efforts. 

All Tanka Products are 100% Natural, never use Preservatives, Erythorbates, Potassium Sorbate, Fillers, or Artificial Flavors. They are Certified Gluten-Free by the Gluten Free Certification Organization (GFCO). They are also Soy-Free, and contain NO Hormones or Antibiotics, and NO MSG. There are NO added Nitrites or Nitrates. Our products are packed full of Energy. At Native American Natural Foods, we follow the stringent Whole Foods product approval list.

Use the links below to order online at Native American Natural Foods. We’ll receive 20% of anything you order from their site.

 

 

TANKA BAR

GLUTEN-FREE * NITRATES-FREE * MSG-FREE * HORMONE-FREE

Made from tart-sweet cranberries and prairie-raised buffalo, the Tanka Bar is a delicious real food bar with a smoky, slightly-sweet flavor.

100% Natural and only 70-calories, Tanka Bars are the perfect food for anyone who’s on the go — athletes, outdoor enthusiasts, students, busy moms, and pow-wow dancers. Gluten-free, hormone-free and low-fat, the Tanka Bars are deliciously perfect for every diet lifestyle. Tanka Bars are guaranteed shelf-stable for up to 12 months.

There are three delicious flavors to choose from:

  • APPLE ORANGE PEEL
  • SLOW SMOKED ORIGINAL
  • SPICY PEPPER

 

TANKA BITES

GLUTEN-FREE * NITRATES-FREE * MSG-FREE * HORMONE-FREE

With the same great taste and amazing nutrition as the Tanka Bars, our Tanka Bites feature 3 ounces of bite-size buffalo and cranberry nuggets in a resealable package.

Tanka Bites are the perfect way to enjoy Tanka’s grass-fed bison goodness with your family and friends. Since the Bites come in 3-oz. pouches, you don’t have to hoard your Bison anymore.

There are three delicious flavors to choose from:

  • APPLE ORANGE PEEL
  • SLOW SMOKED ORIGINAL
  • SPICY PEPPER

Like the bars, Tanka Bites are also 100% Natural, 70 calories per serving, low-fat, gluten-free and hormone-free. Throw some in your purse, backpack or your saddlebag to enjoy on the trail. Tanka Bites are guaranteed shelf-stable for up to 12 months.

TANKA STICKS

GLUTEN-FREE * NITRATES-FREE * MSG-FREE * HORMONE-FREE

A great alternative to the usual processed sticks, Tanka Sticks combine the goodness of prairie-raised Buffalo and tart-sweet Cranberries in a convenient, eat-as-you-go snack stick.

Perfect for a quick, healthy pick-me-up, the 1-ounce Tanka Sticks come in three great flavors:

  • APPLE ORANGE PEEL
  • SLOW SMOKED ORIGINAL
  • SPICY PEPPER

Tanka Wild Gourmet Summer Sausage: In addition to our great Sticks, this recipe is also available as a Gourmet Summer Sausage. Tender and savory, this perfectly seasoned sausage also features the delicious combination of Buffalo, Cranberries and Wild Rice. Available in Original flavor only.

Tanka Sticks and Gourmet Summer Sausages are 100% Natural, low-fat, gluten-free and hormone-free and guaranteed shelf-stable for up to 12 months.

TANKA ONNIT WARRIOR BAR

GLUTEN-FREE * NITRATES-FREE * MSG-FREE * HORMONE-FREE

Made from tart-sweet cranberries, jalapeno and habanero peppers, and prairie-raised buffalo, the Tanka Onnit Warrior is a delicious 2-ounce real food bar with 14 grams of protein and 140 calories.

Perfect as a “recovery food” for high-performance athletes, Tanka Onnit Warrior Bars are gluten-free, hormone-free and low-fat. They are guaranteed shelf-stable for up to 12 months.

 

 

TANKA GOURMET BUFFALO JERKY

GLUTEN-FREE * NITRATES-FREE * MSG-FREE * HORMONE-FREE

Created because YOU asked for it, our Tanka Gourmet Buffalo Cranberry Jerky is deliciously meaty, wholly satisfying and 100 percent natural.

Made from top premium whole-muscle cuts, we slow-cure each slice of our tender Gourmet Buffalo Jerky in real cranberries, with no artificial ingredients. This is simply the best buffalo jerky you will ever taste.

Tanka Gourmet Buffalo Jerky is guaranteed shelf-stable for up to 12 months.

TANKA GIFTS

GLUTEN-FREE * NITRATES-FREE * MSG-FREE * HORMONE-FREE

We’re happy to introduce our new selection of Tanka Gifts, perfect for any special occasion. Choose from a seasonally available assortment of gift baskets, each filled with a carefully chosen selection of healthy Tanka products that are perfect to share with family, friends and co-workers.

Smoky and slightly sweet, Tanka Bars, Tanka Bites, and Tanka Sticks are made from tart-sweet cranberries and prairie-raised buffalo. All are 100% Natural and only 70-calories per serving. Gluten-free, hormone-free and low-fat, Tanka products are deliciously perfect for every lifestyle.

Seasonally available in a range of sizes, Tanka gift baskets are right for holidays, birthdays, anniversaries or just to make someone smile.

NOTE: Not all gift baskets are available year-round.

Remembering Dr. Edwin F. Shinn, Co-Founder of Village Earth and Champion of Human Development

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Ed_ShinnThe entire Village Earth family is deeply saddened by the loss of one of our founders, Dr. Edwin F. Shinn who passed away on Friday, November 28th, 2014 at the age of 80. Ed was an extremely kind and humble human being with a spark in his eye that inspired everyone he touched. Serving as Executive Director of Village Earth from 1993 to 2008, Ed was known by staff and volunteers for his unwavering optimism and ability to not only see the “gift” in everyone he encountered but to help them see it as well. As a leader, he was adamant about inclusiveness and participation by everyone, always insisting that both staff and volunteers participate in shaping what Village Earth would become. He was an inspirational, even ecstatic leader and trainer, who had the remarkable ability to lead a group of seemingly unrelated people on a journey beyond the surface-level and into a realm of “deep connectedness”. More than anyone, it was Ed who infused Village Earth with its spirit and culture of participation.

Ed would usually begin a training or workshop with the story of his “awakening” – when, in 1965 he was living with is wife and young children as a new Presbyterian minister in Los Angeles and was driving away on vacation when, in his rear view mirror, he could see the Watts Neighborhood burning from riots incited by a violent encounter between police and a 21 year-old African American man. That experience deeply affected him and initiated a search for meaning, which led Ed and his wife Miriam “Mimi” a year later to the Ecumenical Institute (EI) based on the west side of Chicago. EI would later become the Institute for Cultural Affairs (ICA). While in Chicago, they worked on EI’s “Fifth City Project” in Chicago’s East Garfield Park Community.

 Above is a video created by the ICA to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Fifth City project.

In 1973, Ed and Mimi were called to Oombulgurri, Western Australia to support an Aboriginal elder help his people escape the degrading conditions in Wyndham to form a community on their ancestral lands in a remote part of the Australian outback. The story of the ups and downs of this awe-inspiring community effort were captured in the book “Outback Odyssey” written by Ed’s wife.

In the late 1970s, Ed and Mimi would move to Maliwada, India to work on an ICA Human Development Project and later were part of a Human Development Training School. According to Vinod Parekh, one of Ed’s colleagues at the school, “Ed inspired hundreds of youth with his unending vitality and zest for life.”

He continued to work for ICA as an organizer and trainer, venturing to Kenya, Peru, Guatemala, rural California, Indonesia, and Egypt. While being a gifted facilitator who loved working with people, Ed was always concerned with the big picture – with models and processes and was constantly seeking input and revising his models about how to “transform vast regions across the globe.”  In the 1980s, while in his 50s, he decided to return to school to try to answer some of the particularly challenging questions that were nagging him during all his experiences in rural development. In particular, he was concerned with the problem of scale namely, “what size of population was most effective for the mobilization of resources?” As he would say, “too small and  you’re always dependent on the outside, too large and things become top-down.” He was directed to Colorado State University where at the time, there was a lot of engagement in international development assistance. He was accepted into the Ph.D. program in Sociology and carried-out field research working to form Water User’s Associations on a large-scale irrigation project in Pakistan. His dissertation titled The social organization of irrigation in the Niazbeg command area: the Punjab, Pakistan was accepted in 1987 and consisted of two volumes with over 630 pages.

Soon after completing his Ph.D., Ed and Mimi left for Egypt where he helped to develop an Irrigation Advisory Service and trained its personnel to work with farmers in setting up water user organizations to improve irrigated agriculture. Afterward, they moved back to Fort Collins and guided a cooperative development exchange relationship between Mexican and US communities known as Partner Communities. They also helped Dr. Maurice Albertson organize an international conference on sustainable village-based development which was held September 28 – October 2 , 1993 at Colorado State University. It was attended by approximately 250 delegates from 40 different countries. The majority of those in attendance were from developing nations and represented local non-governmental organizations working in very grassroots and participatory projects around the world. More than 200 papers were submitted and formed five volumes of Proceedings. By the end of the conference it was agreed that the hosts should form a consortium made up of the participants. The purpose of the organization, originally called the Consortium for Sustainable Village-Based Development (CSVBD), would be to launch several pilot projects, provide training in the methods discussed at the conference, and provide monitoring and evaluation services and coordinate demonstration projects on the ground. According to Ed, “Perhaps one of the most important functions of CSVBD is to insure that the local NGOs build teams with expertise in key development sectors that can interact with both the public and private sectors to secure needed resources.” CSVBD officially changed its name to Village Earth in 2000.

Below is one of the last videos of Ed, talking about his history working in community development and general philosophies of life. 

Ed served as Executive Director for Village Earth from its inception in 1993 to 2008 and oversaw the realization and growth of the organization including developing and delivering numerous sessions of Village Earth’s flagship training “Participatory Practices for Sustainable Development”, assisting with the growth of the Nigeria’s Youth Service Corps, helping to develop micro-finance projects in Pune and Nasik India, assisting with the development of two large cluster development programs in Nepal, consulting on projects with Mercy Corps International, International Rescue Committee, CHF and CARE, helping to create a Ph.D. program in Sustainable Development Management at Trisakti University in Jakarta Indonesia and overseeing the creation of Village Earth’s Online Certificate Program in Sustainable Community Development at Colorado State University. He remained a part of Village Earth’s Board of Directors until his passing 2014. We are certain Ed has found a comfortable place among the cosmos.

Help Village Earth Raise $45,000 for Grassroots Organizations Around the Globe

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Contribution

From day one, Village Earth has been focused on the singular question of “How do we support communities to mobilize and work towards their vision for the future without creating dependence or undermining their own best efforts?”  Village Earth’s Global Affiliate Program, started in 2011, is our answer to this question.

The Global Affiliate Program was founded on the belief that local community organizations or groups can best identify their own needs and aspirations. It works by providing a support structure that enables community groups to access information and to find the resources they need to enhance or expand what they are already doing, or would like to do in a sustainable future as they envision it.We are proud to partner with such groups as:

  • Empowering Youth Cambodia: working with the next generation of youth leaders living in Cambodia’s over-crowded urban slums;
  • Forum for Community Change and Development in South Sudan: advancing the rights of women in a country in deep conflict;
  • Jenzera: working to protect the rights and territories of indigenous and ethnic minorities in Colombia.

These are just three of the 17 different grassroots organizations that are part of our Global Affiliate Program.

Below is how one Global Affiliate describes the support we provide:

1185047_524887214257669_1026588554_nThe Knife Chief Buffalo Nation Organization, Pine Ridge Reservation, SD.“Knife Chief Buffalo Nation, a grassroots organization on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, raises buffalo and provides for their care as they provide spiritual and physical nourishment for the Lakota people.  The buffalo are central to the Lakota spiritual way of life and we are honored to do this work although it is often very challenging to obtain resources for all that is needed to be done.  Village Earth helps Knife Chief Buffalo Nation to meet these challenges by providing technical assistance, fiscal accountability and support for our work.  We are fortunate to have such an organization to partner with!”– Ethleen Iron Cloud Two Dogs, Board Member of Knife Chief Buffalo Nation Organization
Last year, with your support, Village Earth distributed over $75,000 in flexible micro-grants to support community-driven development projects including:
  • Providing computer training for 120 Cambodian youth.
  • Training Lakota youth in sustainable home building on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation
  • Providing human rights training to women in South Sudan.
  • See insert for more about each Global Affiliate and their projects.

This year, we are excited to build on the success of our Global Affiliate Program (now in its 3rd year) by enhancing our support for our existing Global Affiliates through expanded outreach and training opportunities while opening the program up to more organizations.  In fact, we are currently reviewing applications  from organizations in Senegal, Liberia, and Cambodia—all of which look very promising.

If you are already a supporter of Village Earth, we encourage you to renew your commitment now.  If you are new, we welcome you to our growing network of grassroots organizations and allies!

 

 Choose to donate to one of our
Global Affiliates 
below
or
use the
button to the right to let Village Earth
decide 
how best to utilize your donation. 

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50% Off the 1,050 Volume Appropriate Technology eBook Library. While Supplies Last!

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The most comprehensive, compact, and cost effective appropriate technology and sustainable living resource in the world! The AT Library contains the full text and images from over 1050 of the best books dealing with all areas of do-it-yourself technology. Portable and easy to use on 28 CDs or 2 DVDs. The AT Library is currently in use in sustainable development projects in over 74 countries worldwide. It’s like a portable internet of appropriate technology solutions!

Here’s What Customers Have To Say:

The AT Library has been a great resource for us in teaching in all of these areas. We could never have brought all of these resources with us in a printed form, but thanks to the AT Library we had information readily available.

– Lance & Debra Sprick, Life Resource Foundation, Iligan City, Philippines

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Or call +1-970-237-3002 ext. 504 for more information or to order your library using a credit card over the telephone. Click here for a Complete list of Books in the Appropriate Technology Library

Ways to Support Village Earth and Our Global Affiliates This Holiday Season

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The Holidays are an important time for our Global Affiliates. During the months of November and December is when our Affiliates receive a significant percentage of their donations for the year. This year, we have set a goal of raising $40,000 by December 30th (the end of the 2013-2014 tax-year). Below are some ways you can help us achieve this goal.


 

Become a Village Earth Holiday Campaign Captain

Join our end of year fundraising team by becoming a Campaign Captain. Captains set a personal fundraising goal to support one or more affiliates and then reach out to their friends, family, church, or other social networks to raise funds. If you’re interested in becoming a captain or learning more about the opportunity, please contact david@villageearth.org.


 

Form a Giving Circle

Do you ever wish that you could do more than than just a contribute $20 or $50 dollars to a project that in total may cost many thousands of dollars? Wouldn’t it be nice to fund an entire project and have a more intimate role with all phases of implementation? If you answered yes to the questions, than you should organize a giving circle.

“Giving circles are a form of philanthropy where groups of individuals donate their own money or time to a pooled fund, decide together where to give these away to charity or community projects and, in doing so, seek to increase their awareness of and engagement in the issues covered by the charity or community project. Many circles, in addition to donating their money, also contribute their time and skills to support causes.” — Wikipedia

If you are interested in forming a giving a circle Village Earth can help. We offer the following benefits for groups that make a pledge to raising funds for any of Village Earth’s Global Affiliates. This might include:

  • In-person presentations for your circle so they can learn about our Affiliates or dialogue about the status of project they have funded.
  • Regular telephone or video conferences with project leaders around the globe.
  • Site visits to see or help implement  projects your circle has funded.

To facilitate the formation of your giving circle, we have partnered with SocialFund.org.

Social Fund is for groups of people who want to start combined charitable giving accounts. You start one with your family, friends, student organization, or faith community, and pitch in each month. After a few months have passed, your fund votes on where to give out grants, with more than 1.8 million charities to choose from!

We recommend Social Fund for groups that may dispersed or who are unfamiliar with one-another and need a way to efficiently collaborate and collect funds online. Village Earth can also create an account for your group, when you reach a certain account balance your group can then decide how to allocate those funds, either to one or more projects. For more information contact David Bartecchi david@villageearth.org


 

Respond to our Annual Appeal Letter

Each year during the week of Thanksgiving, Village Earth sends out a physical mailing to thousands of our supporters. Responding to this letter by sending a check is one of the best ways to donate since there are no transactions fees. We usually mirror this letter by email for those people for which we don’t have a physical mailing address. You can respond either by donating online or by sending a check in the mail. You can use the form on the sidebar if you would like to join our mailing list.

Alternatively you can, save us a stamp and donate now online or send a check to:

Village Earth
PO Box 797
Fort Collins, Co. 80522


 

 

Contribute to One of Our Microprojects at Globalgiving.org

While we prefer that people already familiar with Village Earth or our Global Affiliates donate directly via check (to avoid transaction fees) several of our affiliates will be running campaigns on Globalgiving.org. If you’re employer provides matching or gives Globalgiving.org gift cards, please choose a project from one of our Global Affiliates. Plus, on December 2nd (Giving Tuesday), Globalgiving.org and Microsoft will be matching donations dollar-for-dollar for all donations to Empowering Youth Cambodia made at Globalgiving.org


 

Donate Your Car, Boat or RV!

car-donatWhy go through the hassle of selling your old car, boat or RV when we’ll handle the whole process for you? Donating your car can be a fast and easy way to make a significant contribution to Village Earth or one of our affiliates. Plus, you’ll get a tax-deduction for the value of your vehicle. We use the trusted V-DAC service (also used by NPR’s Car Talk) to help streamline the car donation process for donors living anywhere in the United States. Click here or the link below to donate your used car. Note: please contact us if you’re donation is intended for one of our Affiliates.

Vehicle Donation

 Processing/Transaction Fees: Village Earth retains up to 70% – 75% of Net Recovery of Vehicle.


 

Support Village Earth whenever you buy or sell something on eBay.com

Looking to get rid of those horrible slippers that you got as a Christmas gift from your aunt in Boca Raton? Or maybe you recently upgraded your phone or gaming system and need to clear some space – here’s a great way to get to get rid of that old stuff and benefit Village Earth at the same time. Now with eBay Giving Works, you can list your items and choose a percentage that will go to Village Earth once it’s sold. Not only are you support a good cause, but your item will stand out to buyers with a blue and yellow ribbon logo displayed right next to the item’s title. Charity listings on eBay have up to 30% higher sell through rates then non-Charity items and they sell for between 2-6% higher prices.

 

Here are some ideas on how you can use eBay Giving Works to support Village Earth. 

  • Host your own charity auction for Village Earth or one of our Global Affiliates
  • Get a tax-deduction for that old clunker vehicle, boat or RV in the driveway.
  • Liquidate the estate of a loved-one who has recently passed away.
  • Clean out that garage or attic.

To start listing items go to: http://givingworks.ebay.com/charity-auctions/charity/village-earth/65425/

Be sure to add Village Earth as one of your causes on eBay.

Follow us on eBay

EbayGivingWorks

 


 

Tell Your Friends on Social Media About Us.

Even if you aren’t able to make a financial contribution, you can help others learn about Village Earth and our Global Affiliates by sharing us with your friends on social media. Here’s how:

  • “Like” Village Earth and your favorite Global Affiliates on Facebook and “Follow” us on Twitter
  • “Like” and “Share” posts you like from Village Earth and our Affiliates. Be sure to comment and encourage your friends to support our work.
  • “Tweet” about @VillageEarthOrg and “Retweet” Tweets of ours that you like.

Update on the Work of VE Affiliate Maloca & it’s Alliance with the Kamayura People of Brazil.

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The past few months were very special and full of activity for Maloca, with a lot of work focusing on Brazil. During the summer, the director of Maloca took a trip down to Brazil, to be with the Kamayura people during one of their most important ceremonies, Kuarup, and brought them a video camera, memory cards, and a voice recorder, at their request. All the equipment has been purchased with fundraised money.
In the fall, the son of the Kamayura Cacique visited New York City, attending various events: People’s Climate March, the United Nations World Conference on Indigenous Peoples and the World Summit on Indigenous Philanthropy. This is a notable event, as it is for the first time a Kamayura travels abroad and participates in such important, global meetings. By enabling the participation of the Kamayura in these international events, and by fostering new connections between the Kamayura and the international Indigenous, activist, donor communities, we hope that we have opened a door of good opportunities for the Kamayura people.
While the son of the Cacique was in town, Maloca started a fundraiser, at the request of the Kamayura Cacique (chief), to purchase a seine fishing net for the village. Details of the current campaign and how peopel can still help, can be found here: http://malocacommunities.org/campaigns-2/current-campaign/.

Help Empowering Youth Cambodia’s Students Who Are in Need of Scholarships

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image001Empowering Youth in Cambodia (EYC) runs 4 schools/community centers in slums, serving over 600 students with educational programs.  Currently 30 students also receive direct support for their studies, mostly for university.  Additional students have applied for scholarships, and funds are needed to be able to support them.

One student is who was just awarded a scholarship is named Mai and she just passed the Cambodian high school exam (only 40% passed this year!).  She plans to study social work and she says,

“I would like to say thank you to donors that help me with my study.  I hope to work with youth in need of assistance one day, including those in the countryside who don’t have many opportunities.”

Mai is very studious but also enjoys ultimate Frisbee, cycling, and wants to learn how to swim. We know that Mai will go on to do great things and are happy to be a part of her journey.

Please help other students like Mai achieve their dreams and support EYC’s scholarship students. To donate, please go to; https://secure.donationpay.org/villageearth/youth_cambodia.php

Non-Natives Collect 84.5% of Agriculture Income on South Dakota Reservations

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The USDA recently released the results for their 2012 Census of Agriculture for Native American Reservations and as most Residents of South Dakota Reservations already know, non-native farmers and ranchers dominate. According to the USDA data, a whopping 84.5% of all agriculture income on South Dakota Reservations is collected by non-native producers. In terms of land control, non-native producers control nearly 60% of all agriculture land and 65% of all the active farms and ranches on Native American Reservations. Data for Individual South Dakota Reservations is below.

 % of Farms Operated by American Indians% of Land Controlled by American Indians% of Agricultural Income Collected by American Indians
TOTAL34.38%40.31%15.43%
Cheyenne River48%42.49%23%
Crow Creek27%NA1%
Flandreau Santee14%NA0%
Lake Traverse5%5.04%0%
Lower Brule39%44.14%39%
Pine Ridge55%61.98%28%
Rosebud31%36.80%17%
Standing Rock25%18.74%13%
Yankton18%2.46%1%

Despite the Federal Government’s “highest and best use” policy for Native American Lands, the USDA Agriculture Census data demonstrates that non-natives are the primary beneficiaries of the Resources from American Indian Reservations, not just in South Dakota but throughout the Untied States. The disparity that exists on Reservations today is the outcome of over a century of racist and exclusionary policies that functioned to alienate Tribal members from their lands to make their agricultural and mineral resources available to non-tribal members for lease below market rates. Many Tribal members weren’t even paid some or all of the lease income owed to them by the Federal Government. Even today, virtually all of the lease income collected on some South Dakota Reservations goes directly the USDA to pay down loans created in the 1970s and 1980s for tribes to consolidate highly fractionated lands (a problem created in the first place by the Federal government’s failure to properly manage the conveyance of allotted trust lands from one generation to the next).

World Food Day: Food Insecurity on South Dakota’s American Indian Reservations

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Today, October 16th, 2014 is World Food Day. The World Food Day theme for 2014 is Family Farming: “Feeding the world, caring for the earth”. While most Americans recognize the problem of hunger in so-called “developing countries.” Very few people comprehend the high levels of food insecurity that exists across the United States. This problem is especially acute on American Indian Reservations where a 120 years of exclusionary federal policies have pushed Tribal members off their own lands to make them available to non-tribal farmers and ranchers. This combined with high rates of poverty has created food desserts across indian country.

“Food deserts are defined as urban neighborhoods and rural towns without ready access to fresh, healthy, and affordable food. Instead of supermarkets and grocery stores, these communities may have no food access or are served only by fast food restaurants and convenience stores that offer few healthy, affordable food options. The lack of access contributes to a poor diet and can lead to higher levels of obesity and other diet-related diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease.”

The map above, developed by Village Earth’s Lakota Lands Recovery Project, draws on 2012 data collected by the US Census Bureau and compiled by www.feedingamerica.org to display the county-level data along with the boundaries of South Dakota’s American Indian Reservations. The data shows that on these Reservations, food insecurity (not having enough food within the past year) is has high as 26% percent, some of the highest rates in the country.

Village Earth is trying to transform this situation by supporting local, grassroots efforts to develop more sustainable, more healthy local food systems. For example, on the Pine Ridge Reservation, Village Earth is supporting efforts of the Knife Chief Buffalo Nation organization who seeks to acquire more land to expand their buffalo herds which provide both spiritual and nutritional sustenance for the Lakota people. Earth Tipi, another one of our Global Affiliates, is seeking funds to develop a demonstration “food forest” near the community of Manderson on the Pine Ridge Reservations. Food forests are a form of sustainable regenerative food systems that bring together assemblages of food bearing parennial plants that thrive in local soils and climate and require very little maintenance once established. On the Cheyenne River Reservation, another one of our Global Affiliates “Mni” is working to restore their lands and aquifers by promoting simple watershed restoration and holistic grazing managemnet practices.  The goal of which is to restore their lands and wild plants after 120 years of extractive grazing practices managed by the Federal Bureau of Indian Affairs.

All three of these Village Earth Global Affiliates are currently accepting donations through Globalgiving.org. Please consider making a donation on this World Food Day.

MnidEarthTipiKnifeChief

 

 

All Donations Matched 30% for VE Global Affiliates | Oct. 15th Globalgiving.org Bonus Day.

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Don’t miss out! For one day only, October 15th, 2014, Globalgiving.org will be matching all donations to select micro-projects of Village Earth Global Affiliates.

We at Village Earth believe the most effective and efficient way to support the empowerment of marginalized peoples around the globe is to support and strengthen their own local and indigenous-run organizations. This approach not only helps enhance local self-reliance but also ensures greater cultural and political self-determination. Yet, despite the widespread acknowledgement of  the effectiveness of local organizations in identifying and addressing issues, their work often goes unnoticed.

Below you’ll find a list of Village Earth Affiliates Eligible for the bonus day. Click on one to donate. 

 

Maloca


VE KnifeChief

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Agricultural Inequality on American Indian Reservations (2012 Ag Census infographic)

Agriculture_Inequality_AIAN

The USDA-NASS recently published the results from their 2012 Census of Agriculture for American Indian Reservations. Naturally, we were interested in what this long-awaited data tells us about the degree of access that Tribal members have to their own lands who, through a history of exclusionary policies and discriminatory practices by the Federal Government,  have been pushed off their legally allotted lands to open them up to non-tribal farmers and ranchers – mostly through leasing programs managed by the Federal Bureau of Indian Affairs. We developed the infographic below to help illustrate what these numbers tells us. However, we feel these numbers, while the most complete to-date, still do not accurately reflect the actual situation of Agriculture on American Indian Reservations – which we believe to be much worse.

Agricultural Inequality AIAN


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Note: This infographic does not include data from the Navajo Nation because it represents an outlier relative to all other Reservations in the dataset.

Village Earth Affiliate Ho’zho’ogo Nahat’a’ to host Healing with Earth and Sky Workshop

9-2-2014 11-25-38 AM

9-2-2014 11-25-38 AM

Statement of Intent

This workshop will gather Indigenous youth, adults, elders, and members of the Flagstaff community using a unique, interdisciplinary process. Our focus will be learning about intergenerational, historical trauma that has affected all people through the process of colonization, oppression, and privilege. Through community participation, ritual, meditation, movement, creative expression, nourishing food and water we will explore a process of decolonizing our bodies and spirits.

Our intention is to create a strong container for healing, connection, and mutual We are actively recruiting Native youth, adults, and elders for participation in this event and providing travel stipends and housing for a select number of Indigenous youth traveling from outside Flagstaff. We seek partners to join us in supporting this project financially so the workshop can be offered affordably to all ($5/students; $10/community members).

Our Guest Instructor:

Rulan Tangen (of Santa Fe, New Mexico), choreographer and director of Dancing Earth, performs, teaches, and lectures internationally. With a devotion toward the development of the innovative field of Indigenous contemporary dance, she has taught extensively in Native communities. She believes in this form of dance as continuing the link of culture from ancient to futuristic.

Organizers and Co-Facilitators:

Marie Gladue, BA, founder of Ho’zho’ogo Nahat’a’, is a Dineh environmental and social justice advocate. She originally envisioned this project with the Indigenous Four Directional Model as its foundation. Marie is a practitioner of Indigenous Community Theater and has developed an organic community process to create artistic performances. She raises Churro sheep and is committed to living a land- based lifestyle on her ancestral land at Black Mesa. mariegladue@yahoo.com/(928)380-0110

Hilary Giovale, MLS, teaches Tribal Style Bellydance and Embodiment Practices to women of various backgrounds, including survivors of domestic and sexual violence. As a Pachamama Alliance Facilitator, activist, and community organizer, Hilary is dedicated to building bridges across difference to create a peaceful, socially just, spiritually fulfilled, and environmentally sustainable human presence on our planet. contact@bellyroles.com/(928)380-1055

  • The workshop will take place at the Center for Indigenous Music and Culture in Flagstaff, AZ, September 10 and 11, 2014
  • The first day is open to Indigenous youth and elders
  • The second day will be open to Indigenous youth as well as members of the local Flagstaff community
  • Nutritious, Native-grown and holistically grown local foods will be prepared by a Native chef and offered each day as part of the experience
  • Co-Sponsors: Grand Canyon Trust/Colorado Plateau Intertribal Gathering, Center for Indigenous Music and Culture, and Anonymous Donors

For more information contact Marie Gladue mariegladue@yahoo.com/(928)380-0110

Mni Hosts Successful Water Restoration Camp on the Cheyenne River Reservation

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The 2014 Mni Water Restoration Camp was held June 22nd to July 6th.  During the two week training session, Mni was host to 35 volunteers and children.  From the outset this entailed expenses in transportation and food to provide for the workers.  

Camp Report by CSU Intern Ryan Reese, Center for Collaborative Conservation
The Mni Water Restoration Camp was a successful effort in both practice and outreach. Through the help of multiple individuals and organizations, the combined projects of water restoration and holistic living at Tatanka Wakpala were accomplished, and the message of holistic land management and restoration was spread to those who attended the camp. Though faced with many difficulties, the participants at Mni persevered in the face of hardship and overcame the obstacles which they faced, and completed many of the projects which were begun.
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The first week was spent preparing camp, creating facilities for future use, maintaining gardens, and surveying the land for water restoration potential. The area around the campsite was mowed, an outhouse was dug on an adjacent hill, and the mobile homes at the site were cleaned out for current and future use. The garden was weeded, furrows were dug, planting mounds were built, and seeds were planted. The stream bed was surveyed for potential dam sites, as were the surrounding hillsides and gullies. Over the course of the week, potential plans were discussed among members of the camp.
There were many different water restoration ideas presented by camp participants. The original goal of putting a few dams in the creek was put off to a future year, as high rainfall had raised the water level too much to allow easy access of the stream bed. At the best potential dam sites in the stream bed, the water was too deep to work with and the soil was quite waterlogged. Another proposition was to build trenches along isobars to hold rain water. Since the area around Tatanka Wakpala has few trees, this type of catchment would fit well with the materials in the area. Unfortunately, the hillsides where the trenches would be placed are also the best sites for home construction on the property, complicating the planning phase. In addition, the trenching machine that was going to be rented for the creation of these trenches had broken down, meaning that any trenches would have to be built with a different machine or dug by hand. For these reasons, the construction of trenches was put off for another year. Luckily, a large number of pine-beetle logs became available for our use for free, allowing us to small dams, or “baffles,” in the washes and gullies on the hillsides above the stream bank.
dams
Over the course of the second week, plans for the dams were finalized. The first dams to be constructed were on the north side of the stream. Five different dams were built in a narrow gully, composed of logs, fence posts, earth, assorted branches and twigs, and barbed wire. These dams were spaced at 15 foot intervals, and were about 8 feet wide and 2 feet tall. Along the banks of the gully, cottonwood trees were planted to restore the ecology in the gully and to solidify the soil and prevent erosion.. On the south side of the stream, 13 dams were built in two different gullies, with six in one and seven in another. These were built with fewer materials, lacking the barbed wire and metal fence posts which the dams on the north side were built of.
A permanent octagonal shade was also built during the second week. The shade will be used for instruction at future camps and as a cook shack once it is complete. The majority of the work for the shade was completed, with only the completion of the roofing and the creation of bracing and supports remaining.
A permaculture workshop was also given during the Mni camp by Bryan Deans, a permaculturist on pine ridge. Mr. Deans walked over the property, discussing the principles and practice of permaculture, water restoration, and holistic management and how it related to the Mni project and . That same week, an ethnobotanical tour was given by Linda (Last Name). The participants at the Mni camp were taken across the property and shown the sacred medicines of the Lakota and told of their uses and cultural significance.
TheMni Water Restoration Camp was a success on many levels. The camp was able to implement part of its water restoration project as well as begin restoring the ecology in the area and reduce hillside erosion, as well as prepare the property for future camps and water restoration efforts. In addition, the camp successfully reached out to multiple organizations and many individuals, spreading knowledge of small-scale, holistic water restoration and building long-lasting relationships that will allow future collaboration on other water restoration projects. Furthermore, as the water restoration efforts proceed, they will act as a showcase for the methods practiced atMni, testifying to the method’s feasibility and promoting its application in other areas. TheMni camp overcame the obstacles which it faced and attained the goals which it set out for itself and prepared future work in the field of water restoration.

Report from Titukuke Rural Community Development Association – Zambia

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Reported By: Richard Mbachundu (TRCDA Programs Coordinator)

ABOUT THE ORGANISATION

1.1 Introduction    The Titukuke Rural Community Development Association (TRCDA) was formed in 2001 and is an Umbrella Organisation for Community Based groups with interest in or supportive of socio­economic empowerment programmes for women, Youth, Children and Other Vulnerable groups of people who are based in Petauke.    The Titukuke Rural Community Development Association herein after referred to as (TRCDA), is registered as a Not­ for ­profit non­partisan Non­ Governmental Organisation (NGO) under the Societies’ Act, Chapter 119 of the Laws of Zambia. It is also registered as a public benefit organisation under section 41 of the Income Tax Act chapter 323 of the laws of Zambia.    The vision and mission of TRCDA are presented below;

Vision:  An improved rural community in Petauke and surrounding areas where OVC’s, Widows, Youth, Women, Terminally ill, Small Scale Farmers and under privileged People sustain themselves.

Mission Statement:  Devoted to uplifting livelihoods, reducing illiteracy, poverty and HIV/AIDS/health problems among the communities in Petauke and surrounding areas through programmes aimed at building local democracy, socio-economic emancipation and environmental sustainability.

Overall Goal: To improve the quality of life for women, youth, children and vulnerable families.

 

OVERVIEW OF THE PROGRESS REPORT

The Titukuke Rural Community Development Association (TRCDA), had for a vision of a vibrant community based organisation in the Eastern region of Zambia. This vision is coming to fruition as evidenced by the development in the period under review i.e. January to June, 2014. It started as a small organisation yet now it has become one of the most promising in the recent years.

We are highlighting the key progressive developments in this report that should prove to any would be partner that we have taken the right path towards becoming a big local NGO able to provide effective and efficient service delivery.

The first step TRCDA has taken is to train both board and management in organisational development that saw it develop robust governance, financial management, operational systems as well as develop a business plan worth winning donor support for the sustainability of its programs.

The realisation that funding partners always wants to partner with credible organisations with well-defined governance and operational systems, and the seeking of solutions to effect the same was achieved. TRCDA now has a Board Charter, financial management manual, operational systems manual with all related policies in place, an Entreprenuership manual, asmall oil processing plant with a  marketing plan, as well as service delivery models for outreach and socio welfare activities.

We thank the United States African Development Foundation for providing the start up support and technical funds to enable TRCDA reach where we area at present.

The organisation has continued to provide education to the less privileged at it School which is the only school in the district providing adult education and tuition to exam sitting students.We have also continued provision of orphan school support services as wellk as basic care and support through our trained caregivers.

Here are some of the key activities conducted during the period under review;

TRAINING IN GOVERNANCE AND BOARD CHARTER DEVELOPMENT FOR BOARD AND MANAGEMENT

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Members of The Board and Management with Consultant during Governance training.

 

 Purpose of the Charter  

The purpose of the Charter is to provide the Board with a tool to guide them in Titukuke Rural Development Association Governance.    The Charter outlines the specific roles and responsibilities of the Board, its committees and the Executive Director. The Charter also defines the performance monitoring mechanisms including financial performance to be used by the Board.   This Governance Charter (Charter) establishes a governance structure and defines key organizational elements of the TRCDA, a multi­stakeholder initiative comprised of Community based groups, Management and Staff, and other stakeholders in the quest to empower vulnerable rural citizens and enhance Gender Equality and equity. This Charter describes how the TRCDA will be governed in order to ensure integrity, accountability, relevance, effectiveness, sustainability, and impact. Alongside the TRCDA Vision, Mission and Values, and the Governance, accountability, this Charter is one of the TRCDA’s foundational core documents. Additional documents such as by­laws, Constitution, and other foundational documents may be added to the core TRCDA documents in order to further define and fulfil our vision. The contents of this Charter and the other core documents may evolve over time to reflect a greater diversity of Board members views, experience, and learning.

1.4 How the Charter should be used   This Charter is to be used by the members of the Board of Titukuke Rural Community Development Association and each member of the Board assumes the responsibility of adapting it fully and updating it regularly as need arises. This Charter is meant to guide Titukuke Rural Development Association governance

 ENTERPRENEURSHIP TRAINING , MARKET DEVELOPMENT AND MANUAL DEVELOPMENT

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The Board Treasurer, Florence Njobvu making a group work presentation during entrepreneurship training

This Manual is designed to provide the Board and Management of Titukuke RCD Association with Guidelines and procedures on how they will manage the Groundnuts oil business profitably.

It is to the best interest of the user as well as the reader to find this document helpful in one way or another. The use of this document is strictly for Titukuke unless permission will have been granted to you by the Board aforementioned.

TRAINING IN FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT AND SYSTEMS DEVELOPMENT

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BOARD AND MANAGEMENT DURING GROUP WORK AT THE FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT TRAINING

The training was targeted at Titukuke Development Association Management & staff, the Board and field staff and field level volunteers. It was divided into two parts; the first part was for field level volunteers as they also handle funds to some extent and the second was for the district staff and the Board.

A combination of methodologies were employed during the training, presentations by the facilitator, group discussions and group exercises to determine the understanding of concepts by the participants.

1.1 Financial Governance

This topic was facilitated by way of presentation and group discussion; it was explained that this role is played by the Board or the Committee or trustees, whatever the name of the governing body entrusted with the governance of the organisation. There are five main roles and these were presented as:

  1. Making sure funds are used to help beneficiaries effectively
  2. Making sure that the organisation has sufficient funds/funding
  3. Making sure that the organisation has effective senior management
  4. Making sure that the organisation operates within the law
  5. Making sure that the board can handle its responsibilities effectively

There is no model finance system which suits all organizations’, but there are some basic building blocks this must be put in place to achieve good practice in financial management, and the facilitator presented them as:

1.2 Accounting Records

Every organisation must keep an accurate record of financial transactions that take place to show how funds have been used. Accounting records also provide valuable information about how the organisation is being managed and whether it is achieving its objectives.

1.3 Financial Planning

This is linked to the organizations’ strategic and operational plans, the budget is the cornerstone of any financial management system and plays an important role in monitoring the use of funds.

1.4 Financial Monitoring

It is possible to produce a financial report for all stakeholders providing the organisation has a set budget and has kept and has reconciled its accounting records in a clear and timely manner. Internal budget monitoring reports help managers to monitor the progress of all projects and annual financial statements as well as provide accountability to external stakeholders.

1.5 Internal Control

This is a system of controls, checks and balances – collectively referred to as internal controls should be put in place to safeguard an organisation’s assets and manage internal risks.

TRAINING IN PRODUCT BRANDING AND MARKET PLAN DEVELOPMENT

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THE CONSULTANT DURING TRAINING IN BRANDING AND MARKET PLAN DEVELOPMENT

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TRCDA STAFF AND BOARD REPRESENTATIVES WHO DID BRANDING AND MARKET PLAN DEVELOPMENT TRAINING

Mpezeni Business College was engaged by Titukuke Rural Community Development Association to provide three-day training in Brand Development and Market Plan development. At the end of the training, the participants were supposed to be able to:

  • Understand what Branding is
  • Appreciate the value of branding
  • Understand the brand development process
  • Apply the brand development process by:
    • Establishing the market opportunity
    • Understanding their target customers.
    • Considering the importance of  research throughout the development process
    • Determining the Unique Selling Point(s) of their product
    • Identifying their brand values and brand personality.
    • Naming their product
    • Deciding the positioning for their product
    • Planning their Brand Marketing Strategy
    • Designing their product packaging
    • Determining appropriate sales channels to launch their product.
    • Developing tools to support the launch of their brand
  • Produce a Market Plan for the cooking oil to be produced by their company to be incorporated.

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THE BRAND THAT WAS DEVELOPED TO BE SEALED ON THE COOKING OIL CONTAINERS TO BE PRODUCED AT TRCDA PLANT

The organization purchased this oil expeller and an oil filter that have been installed at the plant.

The funds raised at the plant shall be channeled towards the support of the office and women’s programs.

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SURVEY ON MUNICIPAL PUBLIC TOILET SERVICE DELIVERY IN PETAUKE DISTRICT

TRCDA with support from GIZ Change Project, conducted a survey on public toilet service delivery by the local council whose findings are expected to be used to develop an advocacy strategy to be used to engage the service providers.

Twelve (12) groups from different sectors of society were engaged through general questionnaires, structured interviews and focus group discussions

 

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Two of the groups participating during the focus group discussins faciliated by Titukuke Programs Coordinator.

The picture below is part of the Titukuke Trust School Garden whose income helps run the school. It requires face lifting so that its turnover is  increased.

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The garden is also used as a skills training centre in agriculture. Above Some youths from TRCDA Youth club practising seed sowing.

CONSTRUCTION WORKS FOR THE PIGGERY UNIT

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The project is funded by Firelight Foundation of USA.It is meant to rear pigs and start up a butchery where pork products will be produced for sale to the public.The proceeds shall be channelled towards OVC school support services.

ADULT  EDUCATION CLASS AT TITUKUKE TRUST SCHOOL

Adult Education starting from grade one beginners to grade seven primary school level is offered at our school.One hundred  and twenty (120)adults are currently enrolled .

Adult Education Class in action at Titukuke Trust School and doing very fine. We lack desks and extra classes to meet the school learning demands of youths, adults and children. Our plans are to establish a day care resource and skills center. Construct a library and waterborne ablution block.

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[Image blurred to protect identity of minors]

PRE SCHOOL CHILDREN AT TITUKUKE TRUST SCHOOL

We have 60 pre-school pupils who spend the whole day at the school and parents come to get them at 16.00hours.There is high demand in this type of education because children enter into grade one with a lot of basic information and such children do very well. However, we do not have enough room to accommodate them. We require to construct two to three class room blocks just for the kids.

Preschool pupils in our overcrowded classroom

CONTACT DETAILS:

We can be contacted at titukuke@gmail.com

Mr. George Masimba Lukwanda cell +260 977 927 884 (Executive Director)

Mr. Richard Mbachundu cell +260 976 295 423 (Programs Coordinator)

CONCLUSION

We want to appreciate Village Earth for identifying TRCDA to become a Global Affilliate.It is our hope and trust that a lot of people and funding partners will recognize and support our little efforts as we try to reach out to the underprivileged society. Further appreciation goes to USADF for the start up support funds that have enabled the organization to mature into a fully-fledged civil society organization in the remote part of Eastern Province in Zambia. We cannot forget to appreciate Keepers Zambia Foundation for the technical support they are providing to TRCDA so that we achieve the attainment our goals.TRCDA shall welcome any partner who would want to partner with us in the scope of our work. We welcome both material and financial support, as well as technical support. We stand ready to avail any needed information about our work and organizational background in detail upon request.

 

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Titukuke Rural Community Development Association Hosts Enterprise Dev. and Financial Mngt Training

Below are photos from the recent Enterprise Development and Finanaical Management trainings. Titukuke RCDA is dedicated to improve the quality of life for women, youths and orphans, and vulnerable children in Petuake, Zambia. Click here to learn more about Titukuke Rural Community Development Association. 

Help us reach our end-of-year fundraising goal of raising $45,000 to support our Global Affiliate Program!Donate Now!