One Family At A Time
Our dinner speaker Jenny Chalmers talked about how being touched by the generous and kind hearted nature of the Cambodian people, prompted her decision to register the charity One Family At A Time.
One Family At A Time (a Registered Australian charity) focuses on supporting individuals, families and communities, in order to assist them to live the lives of their choosing and achieve their full potential. Their work in Cambodia aims to improve access to quality healthcare and education; providing safe, accessible and affordable housing and increasing opportunities for decent employment for adults.
Rice Scholarship Program
As many Cambodian families living in extreme poverty are forced to remove their children from school to work, the Rice Scholarship Program provides students with 10 kg of rice every month in return for them having outstanding school attendance.
First 1000 Days Program
This program invests in the ‘partnership’ between a mother and her child over the first 1000 days of a child’s life, providing vital nutrients and keeping girls at school.
Branching Out Program
Branching out encourages families to grow Moringa trees which they purchase at fair trade prices. They also pay local labourers to plant the trees, thus creating local employment opportunities for several families.
You can join this ‘club’ and donate the cost of one coffee per week (AUD$3.00) to fund building houses for families experiencing significant hardship, poverty and disadvantage.
Small Business Loans Program
The In-Country Liaison Manager works closely with families to assess their skills, experience and employment goals. One Family At A Time then matches donors with these families. So far, they have started male hairdressing salons, shops (selling preloved clothing and groceries), fishing business, motorcycle repair apprenticeship and business, chicken farm, sewing business and more. Branching Out growers are also small businesses set up via this program.
The Aspire program is focused on educating girls in to the future. Aspire will focus on increasing educational, social, creative and sporting opportunities for girls so that girls can aspire to be their very best self.
- KEEPING GIRLS IN CLASS—ONE PAD AT A TIME
Mon 23rd Jul
Girls living in poverty in Africa often miss up to a week of school every month once they reach puberty because of their menstrual period. The reason for their absence from school is multifactorial and includes lack of appropriate sanitary products and cultural beliefs associated with menstruation. This absence severely affects their education as schools are seldom responsive to the situation and offer little or no opportunity for the young women to catch up the work they miss. Global School Partners (GSP) ran a trial Young Women’s Program in 2017 in three schools and an orphanage and the program reduced absenteeism due to menstruation by an average of 88%; it increased understanding of menstruation as a natural part of a women’s life and increased the self confidence and wellbeing of the young women involved. GSP have partnered with Pad Heaven who manufacture the washable sanitary pads and have developed the education and training program and resources. Pad Heaven is a Kenyan solution developed by a Kenyan entrepreneur for Kenyan women. The Rotary Club of Balwyn has provided funds towards this valuable initiative.
- Sustainable Communities Cambodia-Fish Farm
Fri 15th Jun
The Rotary Club of Balwyn provided funds to de-silt an ancient water storage in the Varin area of Cambodia, to allow stocking with fish, thus making it a commercial sustainable project. The proposed arrangements were discussed with community leaders in a meeting that lasted over two hours. They understood and agreed with the concept, but were concerned that theft of fish by locals was likely. They proposed a regime of night-time security patrols to overcome this problem. The proceeds from the sale of fish will be used to both pay down the community loan and be invested in the community for the benefit of the community.
- EAST TIMOR ROTARY LIAISON OFFICE
Mon 23rd Jul
The Rotary Club of Balwyn has been involved in funding the East Timor Rotary Liaison office since 2003. Daryl Mills was the officer for 12 years. We recommended to Daryl that he needed to train some Locals to run the office for when he finished as the officer. Judite Martins and Mario de Jesus filled that role and have done a fantastic job for the past 18 months running the office. All Rotary (and other non-Rotary activities) Clubs involved with projects in Timor Leste (TL) utilise the Liaison Office (LO) to coordinate their activities. Containers & Shipments: The LO is responsible for accepting and then distributing the contents of containers that are sent to Timor Leste from Australia. In 2017 DIK in Melbourne sent 5 x 40 foot containers. ROMAC: This is a rotary project where sick children are sent to Australia for life saving surgery that could not be done in their country. The LO is responsible for coordinating all the ROMAC cases that go from TL to Australian and New Zealand hospitals. Humanitarian Projects: The LO does the local organisation for overseas groups (Rotary and non-Rotary) who undertake projects in TL. For example:
- Prof Jeremy Oats training for midwives at Health Centres in TL
- The Timor Leste Dental Program run by Dr Blanch Tsetong
- Being responsible for the Remexio Maternity Ambulance
- Student Sponsorship: The LO office engage in Fund raising to provide scholarships to enable financially disadvantaged students to continue their education