We started the year with a new fundraiser: Three generations of the Holbrook family hiking Mount Democrat, a 14er which is a mountain peak with an elevation of at least 14,000 feet,or 4267 meters, in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. We want to thank all of our donors who supported the Mt. Democrat fundraiser! Their gifts, based on the number of feet hiked, were very, very generous.
Carter headed up the annual Village Dreams shoe drive, collecting hundreds of gently used athletic shoes at local schools to replenish the Ampeha village shoe library. Here is a picture of the donated shoes being unpacked in the school:
Felicie and Carter traveled to Ampeha in the summer and had many meetings on behalf of Village Dreams along with trips to Ampeha. Felicie, Carter, and the Village Dreams Board of Directors met with Vodafone Foundation to explore the possibility of becoming part of Vodafone’s Instant Schools Initiative. They found that Ampeha is just nine kilometers away from a Vodafone tower that would allow the village to be connected to the internet. Michael and the village elders are exploring ways to direct that signal to Ampeha – stay tuned for more news on this front.
While in the village, Felicie and Michael met with a Ghanaian Education District Administrator while Carter introduced technology to the teachers at Ampeha Primary School. He had pre-loaded programs onto one computer and three tablets and showed teachers how to use these tools. Carter also brought a projector, which the teachers use to show educational videos on classroom walls. The feedback from the head teacher, Osborne, has been very positive. All are hoping this will enhance the educational experience of the students in Ampeha, enabling them to score higher on the BECE exam to qualify for highschool.
We continued our annual December fundraisers, selling recycled Ghanaian glass ornaments at the Dawson holiday
market and new this year, adding a retail site: The Side Door Salon.
Village Dreams Summer 2016
Introducing Our New Website Administrator!
Carter Holbrook, a sophomore at Dawson High School and long time volunteer, is enthusiastically lending additional energy to Village Dreams by raising funds, collecting shoes, and adding tech expertise to make the website come alive.
Carter’s first project was to join his sister, Kara, to establish an annual athletic shoe drive at three schools in Boulder. More than 300 pairs of shoes were collected this year.The shoes will benefit the Ampeha Primary School shoe library and the partnering non-profit organization, One World Running, which sends donated shoes around the globe to third world runners.
Additionally, Carter has signed up donors at fundraisers and currently is working on upgrading our website: <www.villagedreams.org>. We welcome his energy and contributions!
A Michael Sandrock article in the Daily Camera newspaper announced Village Dreams latest fundraising event at Fleet Feet Sports. It highlighted Director Kara Holbrook and her initiative to bring a running and fitness club for kids to the village.
Village Dreams, partnering with One World Running and pro-runners’ favorite gear shop, Fleet Feet Sports, welcomed avid runners and interested members of the public to a meet-and-greet get-together and media presentation about the mission and work of Village Dreams in Ampeha, Ghana, West Africa.Holbrook family and donors at Fleet Feet event June 8th – sampling akpeteshie made by a village distiller.
The results of donors’ generous gifts, villagers’ labor, and the dedication of Accra Director, Michael Addo are evident in the beautiful new primary school building.
The second classroom block has been roofed with nails prepared by students and is almost ready for classes!
The Ampeha Economic Development Fund steadily grows as all of the 2015 loan recipients continue to make monthly repayments into the Fund.
RESULTS: Four of the eight successful 2015 business owners funded by Village Dreams
In July, thirty additional villagers submitted loan applications to the Elders for screening. The Elders sent twelve of the thirty to the Chief and Village Dreams directors to be considered for loan approval. Investment financing will depend on availability of funds and the likelihood of sustainability.
Some of the new entrepreneurial ideas include a village store, mini restaurant, school uniform supplier, and produce/fish venders.
Photos of the selected entrepreneurs will appear in the next newsletter.
Visiting Ampeha June 2014
Village Dreams Fundraiser
In August 2014 Boulder Village Dreams volunteers raised funds selling donated treasures at an Estate Sale. The organization also received generous monetary gifts from friends of Village Dreams.
Building the New School
September 2014 With Estate Sale funds, villagers purchased cement and made concrete building blocks for the construction of a new all-weather school. By the end of October, using village labor, one new block of classrooms with lights was built under the supervision of Michael Addo, a director of Village Dreams. The second three-classroom block will be completed by the time school starts in Sept. 2015.
October 2014 Funds from the estate sale also provided team T-shirts for the school’s boys’ football (soccer) team, textbooks and school materials for 70 students, and some teacher requested resources.
April 2015 The executive members of TEN (The Educator’s Network) donated full scholarships for two Ampeha teachers to attend a professional development conference in Accra, and an anonymous donor provided travel funds.
Village Dreams is tax exempt under section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Contributions are deductible under section 170 of the Code.