: African Empowerment Project

Discussion Forum

Model and plans

By Blue Planet Network Posted on Tue 20 Dec 2011, over 9 years ago

Hi,

After reviewing your website, i see your plan is to help one community fully. In that plan, one of several community projects relates to water.

In PWX, most of our implementing members focus on water and sanitation projects primarily. (One approach is to do these projects in an empowering way that allows other development to be initiated by the community themselves.)

This focus allows more sharing of knowledge as they raise funds and implement more projects. And allows PWX to focus in one sector.

How will your plan and approach fit in this, remains to be discovered. The members can help with your water project, certainly, but how will you link back in as an active member?

Regards,
Rajesh

By Team Blue Posted on Mon 16 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

By Team Blue Posted on Mon 16 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

more clarification

By Tanzania Mission to the Poor and Disabled (PADI) Posted on Thu 19 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

1. According to your brief information about AEPs indicating that your organization has never done any water projects to date except other n on water project. Also the allocation for annual water project in your project shows zero. In History of water project related work not on PWX also shows no any project you have managed to support the community you are supporting. Are the ideals true? If is true can you clarify showing why you never budgeted for water project since the beginning of your organization in 2009 while non water projects have received over $90,000? Is water project in your annual /strategic plan?
2. You have mentioned Mnango’le village in Tanzania, please can you specify ward,district and Region in which the village is found? Is your organization HQ in Tanzania?

Organization and Support

By Team Blue Posted on Fri 16 Dec 2011, over 9 years ago

After reviewing a very well done web site complete with impressive video, I went looking for details on the people involved in supporting Beth and AEP. Other than reference to Essex Junction, VT on the map and Champlain College in the blog, I didn't learn much. As I get to the Burlington area regularly I'd like to know more about the backgrounds of those involved including Beth and possibly set up an introductory meeting in February 2012. Also, what are the sources of funds that have covered the costs incurred to date for travel, video, lamp project, etc.? Roger

Organization and Support

By African Empowerment Project Posted on Thu 05 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

Hello Roger,
Thank you for the kudos on the web site and video.
I will answer your questions as best I can until we meet in February.

1. More about the backgrounds of those involved including Beth.

Beth Fitzgerald
Beth Fitzgerald is the ED and founder of African Empowerment Project. She worked for 24 years serving as a college instructor, kindergarten teacher, Child Development Center Director, and Student Activities Director and Coordinator, for Champlain College. While working as the Student Activities Coordinator, she led 8 college students to Tanzania in 2009, which led to her resignation from the college and eventually the founding of AEP. During and prior to her Champlain career, she was self-employed as a preschool teacher for 11 years. Her service work includes, serving as the president of the parent cooperative school, Saxon Hill School for 2 years, serving as a host ‘mom’ for the Fresh Air Fund, becoming ‘Ma’ to 9 children over 20 years, and helping in a variety of community and civic functions over the years. Her interest in travel, cultural diversity, and education was the catalyst for her initial venture to Africa and feeds her present passion for her work in Tanzania. Her interest in travel, research and study of cultures, and experience as an event planner, teacher, supervisor of college students, and instructor has given her the confidence and skills to venture into the world of community development. Her ability to network, research and make connections, affords her the skills to find the resources necessary to successfully accomplish all of AEP’s goals. Fitzgerald spent the first year developing the name, logo, branding, mission, and goals of the organization. She then returned to Tanzania for intensive research and development of AEP, and to work with the local community based organization as they strategize plans for community development. She also met with Tanzanian agencies and government officials in order to gain the knowledge and support necessary to assure the projects are planned appropriately and will run smoothly and sustain. Upon return she delved in to writing a formal Business Plan for AEP as well as completing the research and gathering the information required to complete the 1023 application for 501(c)(3) status. She returned to Tanzania again to continue working with the local CBO and to complete AEP’s first project, SEE ‘Light for Life’ on the AEP web site. Her role as ED includes, managing all aspects of AEP’s projects including managing the volunteer staff. Since AEP just recently obtained 501(c)(3) status, we have not been able to obtain any substantial financial help. PWX is one of the first organizations we have pursued for support for our project. More information about our volunteer staff as well as other specific into about AEP is included in the complete business plan, which can be made available to you via email or for you to look over when we meet in February.

2. The video was completed by a volunteer.
3. Fitzgerald also lead fundraising efforts in order to obtain the funds to complete the solar lantern project and the return trip to Tanzania.
4. The initial start up costs came from Fitzgerald's personal account till a name, EIN # and business plan was in place.
I hope this answers your questions. Please let me know if there is more information I can give you prior to the February meeting.
Sincerely, Beth Fitzgerald

By Team Blue Posted on Mon 16 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

Rajesh

By African Empowerment Project Posted on Wed 18 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

Hello,
Thanks for reviewing AEP’s application for membership. Many of the answers to your questions are in AEP’s business plan and in our actual PWX application for project funding. I am out straight for the next couple of days but will get back to you this weekend with detailed answers to your questions. Thanks for your time and interest.
Kindly,
Beth Fitzgerald

Sanitation

By Team Blue Posted on Mon 16 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

Hi Beth,
I've really enjoyed reading your blog, looking at the details of your H2OPE Relay event and "50 for Life" campaign. As I dig in deeper and deeper into your blog, I bet I will find answers to a lot of my questions. However, I'm playing catch up and am still reading the entry from March 21st, 2010!

- Mnang'ole -- Why this particular village? Was their need greatest or were they most open to working with you?
- Who are your local partners - Community Based Organization (CBOs)? Are they effective in Mnang'ole?
- You talk about replicating your "project model" around Tanzania. Could you elaborate on your "project model"? Is it as simple as working with CBOs to understand the community and then develop projects around health/well-being, income development and education?
- What is the current sanitation for the village? Is there open defecation or are they using pit-latrines? If there is open defecation, does your well run the risk of being contaminated with ground-water run off?

thanks,
madan

Sanitation

By African Empowerment Project Posted on Wed 18 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

Hello,
Thanks for reviewing AEP’s application for membership. Many of the answers to your questions are in AEP’s business plan and in our actual PWX application for project funding. I am out straight for the next couple of days but will get back to you this weekend with detailed answers to your questions. Thanks for your time and interest.
Kindly,
Beth Fitzgerald

By Etta Projects Posted on Tue 17 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

Hi Beth,
Sorry for joining the dialogue a bit late. I really enjoyed learning about the African Empowerment Project and its grassroots approach towards community development. I appreciate its strategic plan to start small by focusing on the needs of one village before expanding to other areas. I also think there are many benefits to your holistic, comprehensive approach of considering many local challenges and developing projects that respond to varying needs and interests.
Does the African Empowerment Project work with all families within the village, or do only some families participate? Do you have in-country staff? Where are they from, and what is their background? Can you provide some more information regarding the water system are you planning on constructing? I’d love to learn more about the education program involved in the water program. Your background in education certainly will enrich the education component.
Although it strays from the area of water, I’m interested in learning more about your Bikes For Like program. Do the families contribute fees for the bikes? I’m also curious to learn about the results of your H2OPE Relay. Keep us posted!
Thanks again and best of luck!
Katie Chandler
Etta Projects

Katie

By African Empowerment Project Posted on Wed 18 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

Hello,
Thanks for reviewing AEP’s application for membership. Many of the answers to your questions are in AEP’s business plan and in our actual PWX application for project funding. I am out straight for the next couple of days but will get back to you this weekend with detailed answers to your questions. Thanks for your time and interest.
Kindly,
Beth Fitzgerald

General questions

By The Samburu Project Posted on Wed 18 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

Hi Beth,

Thanks for your great work and your dedication to helping people change their own lives. After browsing your application and website, I have a few questions:

1. What is your long-term strategy? That is, you mention a five- to ten-year plan, but what will determine this? Is there a set of criteria you'd like to meet? Does your plan involve an exit? If so, how will that be done?

2. How do you plan your projects and/or decide what the community's priorities are? What kind of input do you get from community members? From whom? How is this input gathered? To what extent are community members involved in the decision-making process?

3. How do you assess your results? For example, were the solar lamps a success? What is that based on? How do you adapt your projects based on feedback/results/etc.?

Thanks in advance for your response. I look forward to learning more about your organization.

Marie Javdani,
The Samburu Project
www.thesamburuproject.org

General questions

By African Empowerment Project Posted on Wed 18 Jan 2012, over 9 years ago

Hello,
Thanks for reviewing AEP’s application for membership. Many of the answers to your questions are in AEP’s business plan and in our actual PWX application for project funding. I am out straight for the next couple of days but will get back to you this weekend with detailed answers to your questions. Thanks for your time and interest.
Kindly,
Beth Fitzgerald


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