The Board of Directors appreciate all of those who have supported the organization during 2019. During the period a board member and Rural Action International volunteers visited the projects and community organizations that we've been supporting in Kasama District of Northern Province Zambia. The team reviewed activities to date and future plans through meetings and the administration of a survey that was completed by each group. A report on the visit presented the findings of the survey and future plans was presented to the board in December 2019.
New Projects for 2020
In the December 2019 meeting the board provisionally approved a partnership program for 2020 that includes financial and monitoring support to build a fourth block of two classrooms at Chileshe Mukulu School and financial, training and monitoring support to install a maize mill in Chileshe Mukulu. The assistance for the school will be carried out in partnership with the Parent Teachers Association, the school administration and Tukamona Women's Co-operative. The maize mill will be owned and operated by the Tukamona Women's Co-operative. The final approval for the two projects is pending agreement on a contract between Rural Action International and the partners and confirmation to proceed with the classroom block by the Ministry of Education. It is scheduled to be finalized in a March 2020 board meeting.
Rural Women Produce and Process Food
Women from Mushili and other groups supported by Rural Action International demonstrate their innovations in food processing at the annual Kasama Agricultural Show in June 2018
We agree that "Investing in women and girls is the right thing to do and the smart way to reduce poverty and inequality"
The new policy specifically states: "we will support access to quality health care, nutrition and education, and principled, timely, needs-based humanitarian assistance that better addresses the particular needs and potential of women and girls." "we will help increase women’s access to economic opportunities and resources. This will help women and girls achieve the economic independence they need to take control of their lives."
Rural Action International has more than five years of working with women's groups in northern Zambia. We are looking forward to seeing the practical results of this new direction for Canada.
RAI Welcomes Musaba Chailunga to the Board
Musaba Chailunga, father and author of Object Oriented Development, attended his first face to face board meeting with the team on May 2 in Waterloo after participating in a series of conference calls since joining the board in August. With leadership experience in the Zambia Canadian Foundation and the Zambia Diaspora Connect, his knowledge and experience is sure to be an asset to all our future endeavours in Zambia. Welcome to Rural Action International, Musaba. We are looking forward to your insights on rural development and contributions to our efforts.
Tangu Sichilima steps down from position as RAI Director
During the August 2014 board meeting Dr. Tangu Sichilima stepped down after completing two terms as a director of Rural Action International. Tangu, a busy pediatrician and mother of two, advised the meeting that due to increasing family and professional pressures she was finding it difficult to commit the time required to fulfil her obligations as a board member. Tangu was clear that she is interested and committed to remaining involved in RAI.
Tangu was among the founding board members when RAI registered as a non-profit on 16th of February 2008 and was approved as a charity on the 26th of May 2009.
During her two terms as a member of the board RAI has provided support resulting in a new classroom block for 3,000 students in a remote rural community of Zambia, the establishment of a growth monitoring point for mothers and children, the initiation of a rural health center and the empowerment of hundreds of women in 5 different groups through training and seed capital for a credit fund.
While the organization was launched with a gift of two hundred dollars, RAI now has over $14,500 dollars in the bank and has delivered over $14,000 to support the community based initiatives mentioned above.
The board is grateful for Tangu’s contributions to the establishment and growth of RAI. Her commitment to continue as a member and supporter was welcomed. All board members and volunteers look forward to Tangu’s continued support and timely advice and look forward to working with her again.
Ride for Rural Action Complete
Peter Lester started his Ride for Rural Action International leaving Toronto on Saturday the 30th of August. He travelled through Brantford, Port Stanley and Leamington finally spending the 2nd of September on Pelee Island. On the 3rd of September he visited Point Pelee, spending another night in Leamington. Peter then headed off to Chatham where he enjoyed a good meal with family and friends including Bruce and Holly McCubbin, board members of Rural Action International. On the 4th Peter started off for Toronto spending nights along the way in London and Brantford. Peter faced the elements along the route including hot humid temperatures, high winds and heavy rains. He spent long hours on his bike completing each daily challenge. He was grateful to pass through Hamilton heading towards the CN Tower on his way home. We'll post some of Peter's photos that capture parts of his journey shortly.
We want to thank all of those who made Peter's Ride for Rural Action International a great success. Some provided advice, others encouragement and moral support and many of you donated to see that Peter reached his goal. Peter exceeded his $2,000 target by raising $3,205 as of 14 September. This will make a difference in the community of Chileshe Mukulu in Zambia. Thank you all who participated, especially Peter!
Board Meeting Approves two Health Projects
During the regular meeting of September 2013 the board approved two related motions:
To seek external funding to support the establishment of a rural health center in Chileshe Mukulu and;
Approve a request from the Organizing Committee of Chileshe Mukulu to fund an upgrade of the existing and operational Growth Monitoring Point.
Proposal Developed for Rural Health Center
A proposal seeking funding for the Chileshe Mukulu Rural Heath Centre was submitted to a Canadian charitable organization at the end of October 2013. The Ministry of Community Development Mother and Child Health in Kasama designed the facility and produced a bill of quantity and budget. The community has prepared burnt bricks, totaling 80,000; valued at $18,000 and provided the land. The proposal seeks $38,000 to purchase and deliver materials, pay a stipend for the skilled labour and ensure qualified technicians monitor the construction process from start to finish. During the project Rural Action International volunteers in Kasama and Canada will support with monitoring, administration and technical support.
Growth Monitoring Point Upgrade Funded
As an interim step leading to the construction of the health centre, the board of directors approved a proposal submitted by the Organizing Committee to upgrade the Growth and Monitoring Point to a permanent structure with iron sheets. The ministry supported this plan and agreed that it will be incorporated into the future health facilities as a multipurpose building suitable for community training and other activities. RAI sent $1,600 for the upgrade in September to ensure that that the construction team had the material to complete the project prior to the onset of the rains in mid-November.
Growth Monitoring Point - Chileshe Mukulu
Brian Lester Steps Down from RAI
Effective the 21st of December Brian Lester retired from the board and position of President of Rural Action International.
Brian was involved with Rural Action International since planning for the
organization began in late 2007. He was among the founding board members when RAI registered as a non-profit on 16th
of February 2008 and was approved as a charity on the 26th of May 2009. During his tenure RAI has provided support resulting in a new classroom block for 3,000 students in a remote rural community of Zambia, the initiation of a rural health center and the empowerment of hundreds of women in 5 different groups through training and seed capital for a credit fund.
organization was launched with a gift of two hundred dollars, RAI now has over
$10,000 dollars in the bank and has delivered over $12,000 to support the
community based initiatives mentioned above.
All board members and volunteers look forward to
continued support and timely advice. We wish you all the best in your endeavors and we expect to be
working with you again.
Women Are Being Trained
Members of Tukamona Womens Group in Chileshe Mukulu and Mushili Womens Group of Tibi Village have been given practical training in preparing local food products in nutritious recipes. There is an emphasis on healthy porridges for young children and babies. Some of the recipes have been translated to the local chiBemba language and copies are in the hands of the community.
Rural Action International is a Registered Charity. Ontario Corporation #: 1755364. Canada Revenue Business #: 82059 3416 RR0001