The EASIEST Way to Give this Giving Tuesday! You & I

Giving Tuesday is here, and our hearts and minds turn to helping those in need, but sometimes it can be difficult to know how.

We have an answer: the easiest way to give this Giving Tuesday.

 You and I FINALCOVER

Recording artist, Andrew Allen is a big supporter of Canadian Humanitarian and Kids Hope Ethiopia.  He has released a song to help raise funds for the organization. We are excited to announce the world-wide release of ‘You & I’. Andrew Allen wrote this song for the students in the programs, and then had them help him record the vocals and the music video.  They have taken the message of this song to heart – we can do amazing things alone… but together? We can change the world.

Check out the music video below:

Andrew Allen and many others have donated their time and talents to produce this song so that every penny will go to the amazing programs that Canadian Humanitarian and Kids Hope Ethiopia run in Ethiopia and Malawi. It’s an incredibly simple way you can help.  

**Pay a few cents for a GREAT song, and help change a life.

You can purchase the song here:

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In the spirit of “Giving Tuesday”, make the choice to pick up this song – and then share it, gift it, invite others to join in giving these students hope! Can you imagine the difference 10,000 purchases would make? What about 1,000,000? Imagine the lives those numbers could change.

Please join us for #givingtuesday to buy the song, gift it to family and friends, share it out on social media so everyone can have this song in their music library and support a great cause in the process! Feel free to use the graphic at the top of the post and share it on your social media accounts using the hashtags #givingtuesday #you&I  then send them the link to this post, or directly to Google Play or iTunes.

If you want to donate directly rather than purchase the song, please consider us for Giving Tuesday 2015!

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 Together we can change the life of someone in need!

You & I.

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Let’s change the world!

Summer News 2015

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It’s hard to believe it is already July! We are loving the summer, and have certainly been busy with exciting things!
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June was a fun month for fundraisers – the Medicine Hat Chapter hosted their first ever Hues for Humanity event, as well as the Drive the Wagon golf tournament. Both events were a success, and between them raised enough funds to feed 50 students one hot meal a day for a year at our Education Support Centers.

We are looking forward to holding our next Hues for Humanity event in Virginia this fall!
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We took a great group of students from Okanagan College to both Ethiopia and Malawi in May. It was a wonderful trip, full of great experiences!

The team was able to do medicals, and provide the community clinics in rural areas, as well as introduce some local children to Frisbee – a game they had never seen before!

We have just released the 2016 Schedule of Expeditions – take a look below!
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2015 MNP Global Youth Expedition Winner!

We are excited to announce that the Global Youth Citizen Award for 2015 has been awarded by MNP to a high school student in Medicine Hat, Alberta.

Myah has been given this award, and will be joining our Global Youth Expedition in August.

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Matt (MNP), Myah (winner!) and Lyndon (Kids Hope Ethiopia)

 
Myah also participated in our November 2014 evening at Medalta with her concept to help change the life of an Ethiopian family with $1000.  Her project came in 2nd place and she was able to present her ideas to the crowd. She’s turning into quite a humanitarian! 

Thanks to Matt, Chris and Ron from MNP for this 2nd annual award to pay the expenses for a deserving youth from Medicine Hat to travel to Ethiopia with the youth expedition.  

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Congratulations Myah!

There is still room to join the expedition but time is getting short so contact Deb as soon as you can to get in on the experience of a life-time! 

Thanks Bobbi-Jo for the great pictures! 

Spring 2015 Newsletter

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The past few months have been busy ones for Kids Hope Ethiopia! With an office now open in Virginia, two successful expeditions with more on the way, and warmer weather finally here – we are excited to share our spring news with you!

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We are excited to start a fundraiser called Hues for Humanity.  This event is a colorful fun run for the whole family where participants help raise funds through registration and pledge pages.  Hues for Humanity is taking place in both the U.S and in Canada and will be happening at different times throughout the year.  This summer Medicine Hat, Alberta will be hosting our first color fun run and will be starting off a great event that we hope to make a tradition.

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In the past few months we have had two very successful expeditions to Uganda and also to Ethiopia. We are excited for our next upcoming expedition taking place this August, the Global Youth Expedition.
Check out our blog and see what has been happening or take a look at our calendar to see what is coming up.  If you would like to participate in an upcoming expedition please contact Deb.

Some of our favorites:
A Kitchen For Kality
Puppets in the Theatre!
A New Roof
Music Without Boundaries (expedition with Andrew Allen)
Shirts and Shoes! 

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We are looking for people to host their own ‘fill up the summer’ fundraiser.  Pick any weekend in June to join our international fundraiser and set a goal to raise $1000 or more. Host your own backyard barbecue, dinner party, or even hold a bake sale and help support education for our students! Contact Rachel to set a date and get cooking! 

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The Foresight Fathers have been busy.  Ashebir is working hard as the new Program Manager, and we are excited to see what they are accomplishing!  (see more pictures

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Lots of young people are getting involved with holding their own fund raising activities whether it’s taking donations at their birthday, having a crazy-hat day at school or a lemonade stand in the park – we can use all the help we can get!

Happy National Volunteers Week!
We cannot do what we do without you!!
THANK YOU!!

Did you miss our year end newsletter?
If so, check it out here! 

Our address has changed! Our office is now located at
#210, 2472 Magnolia Ave
Buena Vista VA 24416

Shirts and Shoes

The expedition team that traveled with Andrew Allen has just returned home from Ethiopia. They had a wonderful time!
One of the main goals of the team was to raise enough money to buy a new shirt and pair of shoes for each student in the programs they worked with. And thanks to their supporters and generous donations, they were able to do just that!
The kids love their new shirts and shoes.
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Thank you to everyone who donated and made this possible!  
And thank you to Meagan, Shasta, Elizabeth, and Andrew for making it happen.

The Gindo Center gets New Paint

In Gindo we painted two classrooms and the dining hall. We asked if they had a ladder– so they went out and made one from trees. When we took it into the room, it was 3 feet too long to use- so they took it outside, sawed off the bottom 3 feet, and then gave it back to us It was quite unsteady so required someone to hold onto the bottom when in use but it did the job! 2015.03.gindo1 2015.03.gindo2 We first did all the upper part of the room in white, then the second day all the lower parts in Green.
The classroom with white part done first day!

The classroom with white part done first day!

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Dining hall completed and hand made ladder on the floor.

Dining hall completed and hand made ladder on the floor.

The center looks good as new again, and we felt accomplished after two days hard work. -Deborah Northcott, Expedition Team Leader

Happy Birthday at Kality

A couple of the expedition volunteers and I got to participate in another birthday celebration at Kality. What a lot of fun this is! The kids who had had birthdays in the last 3 months get to sit at a head table, and have a special program of dance and poems, then they get to blow out the candles and cut the cake! You can just see how special they feel as they are honoured .. for all the kids, they have never celebrated birthdays ever until the center did this for them. VERY special– lots of cake, pop, and cookies consumed! 2015.03.birthday1 2015.03.birthday2 2015.03.birthday4 -Deborah Northcott, Expedition Team Leader

The Second Roof

This was the second roof that we replaced. The father and mother are quite aged, and their youngest son is in the program Father has been diagnosed with late stage bowel cancer, so will not be with us long. We put a clear fiberglass piece in the roof, so the family would have warmth and sunshine in their little one room home. The mother was thrilled! 2015.03.secondhouse2 2015.03.secondhouse1 These are the new rafters being placed for strength with metal sheeting. 2015.03.secondhouse3 2015.03.secondhouse4 The student’s mother and father stopped us to say thank you when we were done construction. They are very happy with their new roof! -Deborah Northcott, Expedition Team Leader

Games at Kirkos

At the Kirkos center we had two days of fun! The first day we did North American dancing and Ethiopian dancing – the second day we had a carnival which included an UNO tournament, face painting ( although some wanted it on their arms), a craft table, a puzzle table… The kids LOVED this! 2015.03.kirkos1 2015.03.kirkos5 2015.03.kirkos4 2015.03.kirkos2 2015.03.kirkos3 -Deborah Northcott, Expedition Team Leader

A Kitchen for Kality

At the Kality project- the guys built a structure to give shade to the children, replaced many of the taps on the water center, and helped construct a smokeless oven in their new outdoor kitchen! Lots of fun! 2015.03.kitchen1 2015.03.kitchen2 This now captures the smoke and takes it out a chimney so the women can cook the hot meals for the children without being faced with a smoke filled room. AWESOME job! 2015.03.kitchen4 -Deborah Northcott, Expedition Team Leader

Puppets in the Theatre!

One of our expedition volunteers traveled on this trip with her daughter. Together, they led a program at each center that the kids loved! Each center got a puppet theatre, and puppets to make up stories with. 2015.03.puppets1 2015.03.puppets2 They each built their own out of socks as well This was a LOT of fun too!   2015.03.puppets3 -Deborah Northcott, Expedition Team Leader

Construction Project in Addis: A New Roof

Close to the beginning of our trip, our group took on a real construction challenge- replacing a corrugated metal roof! The home was that of one of our students and his mother. The roof was no longer sheltering their little one room of 4Ft X 6 Ft Looked like this! 2015.03.firstroof1 We had two graduated wood working students from our SSCM Vocational Training Center along to help us with this task. The home was in the middle of a set of 4 one room homes… so they all shared a roof. The crew began the slow process of tearing everything down BUT not disturbing the others. 2015.03.firstroof2 There was lots of dust in the air from soot and from the construction. 2015.03.firstroof3 Once the roof was off, the crew had to replace the rotten frame boards, so that the new roof has a solid foundation to be nailed to. The only thing that could hold them up were the walls… so this was a precarious position to cross over! 2015.03.firstroof4 Slowly the new metal roofing was put under the neighbours, and extended to cover our family’s home! 2015.03.firstroof5 This was the job all done – the look from the inside! The open edge was very important, as they had their open fire cooking area within the room,.. so the smoke can ventilate out this edge. 2015.03.firstroof6 When we were finished, we all came together for a small farewell. We introduced the whole team from Canada, and the family had a chance to thank the group for their help. A really special moment! 2015.03.firstroof7   -Deborah Northcott, Expedition Team Leader

Guest Post – Shelly Vansbinbergen

Over Their Heads

There are so many stories that are floating around my mind and heart upon returning from Ethiopia. I wish I could bring back something tangible to show you and have you feel and experience and smell and touch what we felt while we were there. Alas, luggage allowances aren’t what they used to be and  even if they were, they wouldn’t suffice so I’ll have to rely on words to bring you as much as they will for now.
 

I’ll start with a photo I shared on Instagram that seems to have touched a lot of people pretty deeply. It’s a young boy, named Teddy, who shyly gathered 7 adults together to thank them for putting a roof on his home.

Teddy lives with his mother, behind a corrugated fence that hides about 6 or 7 families living in small mud and stick constructed shanties. Stepping over the small ditch with sewage and water running freely, into the small compound, I immediately felt claustrophobic. It was a tight little space with piles of tires and bags and plastic on one side of the wall, allowing only about 2-3 feet to walk through to get to the back of the compound where Teddy lives. In the corner, last doorway on the left…a dark little 9×9 shanty where his mother and he share a bed, cook their meals on an open fire with no chimney, the smoke filling their home until it dissipates through the door or the holes in the roof. The mud walls are covered with blackened soot and the floor is covered in ash, though you can tell it’s been swept just recently.

Teddy and his mother live alone, and are only able to live here because their home is owned by a relative who has agreed to let them stay here. The roof is corrugated tin and it has falling into such disrepair that it actually allows the only light into the room that Teddy and his mother share. Sunlight streams through, illuminating the dust in the air, and while beautiful in a photo, imagine it in the rainy season when daily downpours rain virtually unhindered onto the heads of those trying to sleep or eat or cook below. We tear off the roof and there is an indescribable amount of dust, debris and rat droppings that we are inhaling as we go. There is no health and welfare department here to ensure the safety of children in their own homes. The roof comes off, the cross beams are dismantled, nearly dust themselves after years of heat and rain and smoke have had their way with them.
Sunlight through the holes in the roof

They’ve lived with this roof through too many rainy seasons

In the confined space, the guys tackle taking off the existing roof
Frank and Murray and Pete – and a shower of rat feces, dirt and debris that has accumulated over the years

The guys on our team, Frank, Murray, Pete, Keith and Henry work alongside two graduating students from the vocational program, to come up with a plan to support and rebuild the roof, despite the crumbling walls and cramped workspace. We were worried that the guys being on the support beams may in fact cause the walls of not only Teddy’s house to crumble, but also that of the other child headed household on the other side of the wall. We had to move cautiously and constantly reassess the situation. There are no building codes in these slums. Most of the time that the guys were working, I sat outside the pit latrine, on the only free real estate I could find, with my feet up on bricks, hovering above the stream of sewage flowing through the yard. As I sat, I tried to imagine dark nights and rainy days turning the dusty yard to mud. I tried to think of how a mother would keep her son safe and fed and dry when everything around them seemed unstable and unsafe, the very home they shared showering them and the mud walls crumbling into the already cramped space. I tried to think of how I would keep my wits about me if these were the circumstances I was handed, my life to be lived out in this cluttered alley shared by other families, no privacy even in the suffering. I watched Teddy’s mother as she watched the guys rebuild her roof. She was a solemn and serious woman and yet, her hands would touch Teddy’s back when he walked by, she would stand next to him and watch alongside him, her love for him evident in her mannerisms and body language, though her face remained stoic. Apparently there’s no room for emotions in this crowded alley. Maybe they’re a luxury that can’t be afforded to those trying to survive. I know as I watched her and Teddy, my eyes filled with tears several times but I hid them in an effort not to embarrass them or myself. 
Cross beams are cut from local hardwood poles

Keith and Frank spacing out the cross beams for adequate support

Hilo, a recent carpentry graduate is happy to be working and gaining experience. As a result of his work on this site,  we are able to write a credible reference for him to aid in his job search.

Frank learned quickly that you need to oil the nails to allow them to penetrate the hard wood poles.


Teddy pitched in to clear away some of the fallen roof from his home

With the room cleaned out and the roof off, it was still just a 9×9 mud shanty shared by Teddy and his mother.

Teddy’s mother looks on while demolition of the original roof takes place. 

In the end, the guys were able to secure the roof and also to make a place for the smoke from the cooking fire to be vented, without allowing water into the home. Teddy and his mother were incredibly grateful and she shared their gratitude with us after the construction was completed. 
A few days later, when we visited Teddy at the centre where he receives a daily meal and help with school work, he asked the program coordinator, Tillahan, to ask if he could speak to us. Standing there, with Tillahan as his translator, this small boy spoke with such eloquence and gratitude, he moved us all to tears. He told us that in the rainy season, he felt he could never sleep and that he cried each night as it rained. No one should have to live in the kind of conditions that Teddy and his mother live in. Even with the roof fixed, I asked myself if I would feel confident enough to sleep there with one of my boys and I know that I wouldn’t. Although Teddy and his mom have to live in difficult circumstances, I know that when the rains come in the next few months, they’ll know that they will think of a group of new friends who came halfway around the world to do what we could to provide them with a dry place to sleep and the knowledge that they are loved and missed and prayed for by us. 
Teddy and his mother outside their home.

Congratulations Rachel!

We’re very excited to have Rachel chosen for the Top 30 Under 30 Magazine from the Alberta Council for Global Cooperation. She has provided essential leadership, problem solving skills, creativity and initiative to ensure the success of Kids Hope Ethiopia and our programs in Africa. We’re glad she’s such an integral part of the team!
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The Andrew Allen Expedition


Calling all humans that want to change the world!

This SPRING 2015, Andrew Allen is teaming up with Canadian Humanitarian and Kids Hope Ethiopia to bring hope, music and inspiration to some of the most impoverished and at risk youth in Ethiopia.

Donate Now so Andrew Allen and his expedition members can donate shirts and shoes to the children his is visiting!

#MUSICWITHOUTBOUNDARIES

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