GAMBIA HEALTH EDUCATION LIAISON PROJECT (GambiaHELP)

Rating: 4.95 stars   22 reviews

Issues: Environment, International, Economic Development, Microfinance

Location: 3920 NE 38th Street Seattle WA 98105 USA

Mission: GambiaHELP provides health and education resources & seed funding to projects that alleviate poverty and enhance the well-being of people in The Gambia.
Results: This year we are supporting 60 children, mostly orphans through our Educational Fund, providing books and school supplies to 50 rural schools requesting assistance, and rehabilitating several libraries that were damaged by heavy rains. We are currently fundraising to renovate a skills center in Banjulinding and build a school (8 classroom block) in Berending.
Programs: The Library/Book Project: The development and building of libraries in primary and secondary schools throughout rural Gambia; Women's Empowerment Project is the training of women in cooperatives with marketable skills such a rice milling, cereal banking, sewing and small enterprise development (poultry farming and gardening); Education Fund is a program to send economically disadvantaged and orphaned boys and girls to school by payment of school fees, clothing, supplies, shoes and a daily lunch.

2013 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

GambiaHELP is an organization that has done so much for the people of The Gambia, especially women and children. They continue to help transform the lives of so many people in The Gambia, by supporting projects identified by the communities that would directly benefit them.These projects include but not limited to education, healthcare and access to clean water, just to name a few. The organization has provided books to various schools. They have provided bicycles to a lot of school children from rural communities, to help alleviate their commute to and from school. I am very grateful to this organization for supporting among other things, the health center in my hometown of Banjulunding in the West Coast region of The Gambia.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 4 stars  

GambiaHELP is one of the best organizations helping children and women in The Gambia with education and health ,My whole family are volunteers and my employer is a donor.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

Every person is born with the right to be taught to read and understand the rudiments of scientific understanding. In the developing world this simple dignity is too often denied to women and girls. GambiaHELP puts donations directly into the hands of those who need them most; personally delivering books to school libraries, paying scholarships, and putting backpacks and school supplies into the hands of students. Every penny is used to further the mission (the chief executive's salary is $0). Join us and make a real difference in this winnable fight.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

GambiaHELP is a wonderful organization that raises funds to support projects in the Gambia identified and proposed by the communities and people of Gambia. In addition to raising funds for projects, GambiaHELP also collects educational and medical supplies throughout the year in Seattle that are then shipped to Gambia. Shelby spends several months every year living in Gambia distributing the donations and learning about the needs and future projects from Gambians. I have volunteered for GambiaHELP for over 10 years and was able to go to Gambia to see all the wonderful projects that have been supported.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

GambiaHELP has contributed alot to women's empowerment and girl's education in my country of The Gambia through cereal banking, skills development and paying for school fees for girls. This charity works with the community directly with a participatory process to build libraries, skill centers and digging wells.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I'd like to see GambiaHELP do even more to promote girl's education.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of advisors?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

Shelby knows how to make things happen! For decades, she has been cultivating relationships in The Gambia, and along with locals, figures out practical ways to give villages the boosts they need to get long-term projects rolling and thriving. She gives financial and logistical help to start educational, nutritional and small-business projects that benefit entire communities, and that the local people can sustain and develop on their own for years to come. I am happy to be able to contribute my time and funds, both of which I see used efficiently, sensibly, and with warm appreciation.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

GambiaHELP is an extraordinary organization with a great mission to give, provide and build. With several fundraisers and events, Director Shelby Tarutis and the organization's volunteers have truly made a difference through dedicating their time and energy into making a difference for the people of Gambia. I am happy to say that I have been a part of such a wonderful organization.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Be involved much more even though I live in California now!

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

We have been involved with GambiaHelp for many years and feel it's a very worthwhile nonprofit to support. Shelby Tarutis is a close family friend and works very hard to improve the quality of life for the people of Gambia. Every year we are amazed at how much she's accomplished and the improvements she makes to the program to benefit the Gambians. Over the years, their lives have continually improved due to the hours Shelby volunteers to perfect the program. We never hesitate to support this non-profit as we know our money will be used in the best way possible.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

I am more than a donor really, I have been friends with Shelby Tarutis (the director) for many years and did volunteer work with her when I was younger. Shelby began GambiaHELP all on her own because she loves the Gambian people and wants to help them. She served in Gambia in the Peace Corps. She has done an amazing job of bringing schoolbooks, medical supplies, and much much more to the Gambian people. She is devoted to her cause. Her web page tells more about her work and achievements than I can - http://www.gambiahelp.org/index.html Shelby is conscientious, hard working, strictly honest, and very caring.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

GambiaHELP provides Gambian schools with schoolbooks where they had few or none before, school supplies for the students, wells for water for the villages, medical supplies, computers, solar lamps, and much more. I have known Shelby Tarutis, the director, since she began GambiaHELP. Shelby does an awesome job of raising funds and gathering supplies to ship to The Gambia, then travels to The Gambia to distribute them. She speaks Mandinka with the people there and is loved by them. It is hard to imagine what all those village schools would be like without the impact of GambiaHELP. And the lives of many have been improved through having village wells for clean water supplies.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

Our biggest projects include building libraries, schools, and skill centers. Skill centers are buildings where the community can receive training, have meetings, store supplies out of the weather and make the goods for their sustainable projects.

The projects GambiaHELP supports come from the needs and dreams of the communities in The Gambia. GambiaHELP requires the community to donate 25% of the project in labor, services and land donations. This is a time consuming method, but because of this dedication and commitment, our projects have long lasting results and are beneficial to the entire community.

This is only one aspect of the incredible projects that GAMBIA HELP does. Please read the personal blog of Director Shelby from this year's trip. It details the work she so willingly and generously does.
Susan Moen, Board Member

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

I have been to Gambia with Shelby Tarutis to distribute money for schools, scholarships, clinics, libraries and Women's cooperatives. Over 95% of the money raised is used in projects in Gambia to help Gambians in sustainable ways. As a former Peace Corps volunteer, she speaks the language; Director Tarutis opens communication about what projects are the most needed iny the villages by talking with the elders. Over 55 libraries have been refurbished or built by her projects. I was incredibly impressed by her work.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful?