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June 8, 2010

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June 8, 2010

In the summer of 2007, I traveled to Uganda on a Travel with Purpose team and had my life changed through that experience with Fount of Mercy! While in Uganda, I spent time facilitating education training workshops for Ugandan educators. Once I was back in the USA, I had the privilege of working with Fount of Mercy as the Educational Development Director, overseeing the overall educational development program. The organization does an excellent job of connecting stateside volunteers with Ugandans in a way that the stateside volunteers can use their skills to strengthen Ugandans. Fount of Mercy focuses on empowerment of the Ugandans it connects with. I have loved my time and experiences volunteering with Fount of Mercy!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the various workshops I have planned over the past 3 summers.

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How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

June 3, 2010

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June 3, 2010

I am so impressed with Fount of Mercy and with the way that they as an organization are truly seeking to empower locals here in Uganda. They are taking a very appropriate approach to helping local grassroots organizations in a long-term, sustainable way. It is so encouraging to see the way Fount of Mercy is encouraging, supporting, and truly empowering organizations throughout Uganda.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I'm able to hear, first, hand, as a local board member, about the amazing impacts that are being made with local grassroots organizations.

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How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

June 1, 2010

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June 1, 2010

I had the life changing experience of participating in Fount of Mercy's Travel with Purpose program last summer. Upon arrival in Uganda, I was completely blown away by both the beauty of the country and the people and the immense poverty and need. After spending a week with a group of volunteers teaching in an orphanage, I can tell you that I have never seen poverty like that before in my life, but I left at the end of the week feeling good out the future of the children that attend that school because of what Fount is doing with the school. Through Fount of Mercy, the orphanage has funding for uniforms for students, meal plans and a library. Fount also provides strategic development expertise and leadership training for the school leadership.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

working with the TOAST orphanage in Jinja. I have seen the school go from a one room shack to a multi building establishment with a library and strategic direction.

Ways to make it better...

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

help the organization build out it revenue model and fundraising so that the staff are salaried.

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

knowing I am apart of an organization that is making a great difference in the lives of at risk children.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

passionate, responsive, grateful

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

salary its staff members, expand to more organizations and countries.

Ways to make it better...

I was more skilled as a teacher

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

- having unsalaried staff - board that is not focussed on fundraising - lack of a robust revenue model

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

June 1, 2010

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June 1, 2010

I was honored to help Fount of Mercy raise awareness and funds for their work in Uganda by assisting Tara Hawks with planning the first Sewing Hope Fashion Show in New York City. Working closely with Ms. Hawks and other Fount of Mercy Staff I was able to get a very close look at the work they have accomplished in Uganda. Their unique partnership approach is truly about empower the people of Uganda and helping build their capacity. The work Sewing Hope has done has had a direct impact on women, by teaching them how to sew. This skill is then used to help fuel the economy in their communities and also pass along the skills they learn to others. The Fashion Show Fundraiser is an incredible way for the Sewing Hope project of Fount of Mercy to showcase their work and encourage people in the United States to either travel to Uganda to help with the partner organizations there, or to help support their work financially. I was honored to help with this Fundraiser and continue to support the work Fount of Mercy is doing and plans to do. They are an incredible group of women and I hope to join them on a trip to Uganda to see the women and orphans they have been helping first hand.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing the effect the work has had on the staff of Fount of Mercy. Their ideas, enthusiasm, care, cultural considerations are truly an inspiration.

Ways to make it better...

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

help them acquire more funds so they could accomplish more great work in Uganda. They are a new organization, full of young, talented, hardworking women, yet they are doing a variety of work to help fuel the work they truly care about, helping Ugandans.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

getting to know the incredible staff and learning about their work in Uganda.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

amazing. They are really hardworking, caring, intelligent and inspiring people. I have been honored to know them.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

really accomplish and incredible amount of work affecting many people's lives. As a new organization they have been on a shoestring budget and it would be a great thing for them to secure funds to implement more great ideas and projects.

Ways to make it better...

I had more time to volunteer with them! I really enjoy working with them I wish I could give them more of my time!

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

financial, but all new non-profits face that challenge. I know they will get past that because they have work with integrity and longevity. They have begun great work and it will continue!

One thing I'd also say is that...

if you have a chance to either attend the Sewing Hope Fashion Show Fundraiser in New York City - you should...or want to go to Uganda to do skill building, you should go with Fount of Mercy.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

May 31, 2010

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May 31, 2010

Fount of Mercy is an organization that is really a partner in development. We carried out village baseline surveys together to get to understand the situation of women and the children. From our findings we developed projects that are suitable to address the problems of women and young single mothers. Vocational training and teaching women on how to run an income generating activity is one of the projects we developed. Thanks to Fount of Mercy staff and the volunteers that came through this organization. They are so friendly and are flexible when they interact with the local women.

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The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Our organization has worked and is in partnership with Fount of Mercy. With their support we are able to respond to the needs of women

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Helping the name of my organization come out

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

very friendly and flexible

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

support many small women organizations

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

May 31, 2010

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May 31, 2010

I think Fount of Mercy is an amazing organization. My first experience with Fount was when I traveled with my church's youth group to TAOST. Fount set our youth group up at TAOST where we assisted the teachers during the morning lessons. Teaching English was a huge focus and we utilized fun games, songs, and readings to help the children learn. During the afternoon sessions we led vacation bible school activities (i.e. games, arts and crafts,...) and played a lot of football (or soccer :)) As a chaperon, I was extremely nervous to take these youth to a third world country that none of us had every experienced. Fount of Mercy met with us multiple times in order to prepare us for this trip. They covered everything from team building exercises, to differences in the culture, to what to pack, to even going over our lesson plans and activities. Once on the ground in Jinja, Uganda Fount's attention to detail continued. Lori, an employee of Fount, handled our lodging, transportation, food, and also planned activities away from TAOST for our youth to see even more of Uganda. I was so impressed with Fount of Mercy's mission of assisting grass root African organizations to care for and educate orphans that I immediately began planning a trip for the following year. I felt a bond with the children of TAOST so me and two friends decided to travel back. Fount of Mercy representatives were just as awesome if not even more so in planning for this trip. They took the skills of our three person team and focused on how we could best benefit TAOST. With Fount's help we set up lesson plans to include a variety of instructional strategies for the morning sessions and the afternoon sessions would then be spent with teaching the teachers how to incorporate these strategies into their lessons. While the trip was a lot of work, it was extremely rewarding. I often wonder if the trip did more for me then my work did at TAOST. However, I do know the lessons the teachers of TAOST learned from our time there will benefit the children for years to come. Fount of Mercy allowed me to use some of my skills and education to help others. Fount made the trip planning easy so we were able to really focus on the mission of helping. Looking forward to my third trip back!

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The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have seen the smiles and felt the hugs of the children of TAOST. I taught lessons to orphans in an old barn and gone back the following year to teach these children with four walls and a blackboard. The work that Fount does in tangible and meaningful.

Ways to make it better...

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

Give them more money. As with all non profits, Fount of Mercy is limited on how many organizations they can assist in Uganda because of money. I feel the ground work for Fount has been set. Now they just need the means to continue their wonderful work.

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

everything. I know this is very generic but it is honest. The time with Fount of Mercy in Jinja, Uganda has influenced all areas of my life.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

compassionate, kind, and fun.

Ways to make it better...

the airfare to Entebbe is cheaper so I could go back more often.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

fund raising. Because Fount is working with local African organizations it is hard to engage citizens in the U.S. The whole "out of sight out of mind" mentality.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

May 29, 2010

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May 29, 2010

FOM works with small grassroots organizations in Uganda that serve vulnerable populations many of whom are women. There are many widows, single mothers, women with disabilities and orphaned/vulnerable girl children. FOM works to build the capacity of these organizations that serve these disenfranchised groups by jointly developing programs and projects that benefit the poorest women and girl children. One of the main ways that women are empowered is by integrating them into a viable income generating activity. An example is sewing and tailoring for which FOM pays for the training courses of women in the villages so they can learn to be tailors, generate income and support their families. Another instance of empowering young girls and women is through FOM's joint educational initiatives with community based schools that allow children who do not have the money to pay for school fees to receive an elementary education. FOM is an amazing ngo, because they utilize local knowledge, resources and incorporates the sustainability approach in all their development initiatives. The goal of all development endeavors and activities is to help achieve self-sustainability of the grassroots organization, poor communities and the most vulnerable individuals of those communities. This is done by building on the existing capacities of the stakeholders so poorest of the poor will have more choices regarding their lives and those of their families.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Through site visitations, working directly with the organizations and beneficiaries, as well as monitoring and evaluating the process and impact of programs and organizations on the communities, I have seen the effective results of FOM's work.

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How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

May 29, 2010

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May 29, 2010

Fount of Mercy is doing some incredible work in the New York City area. They are making great strides in benefitting widows of AIDS in Uganda by teaching them how to sew. Sewing Hope, under Fount of Mercy, creates a beautiful blend that combines the needs of Uganda with the overflow of New York City by throwing a high end fashion show that features garments made with Ugandan fabric. Their events are as chic as any event here in NYC, and it's all for a good cause.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

helping change the lives of widows in Uganda.

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How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

May 29, 2010

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May 29, 2010

Wonderful people to for/with. A HIGHLY organized and hard-working group of people, and, most importantly, a cause this is so worthy. Tell your story here and help others understand this charity

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

changing the lives of women in Uganda by helping purchase sewing machines, and offering training so that these women can start their own small business...and it's working!

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How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

May 28, 2010

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May 28, 2010

I'm privileged to know the directors of Fount of Mercy and Sewing hope. I have seen the growth of this vision and I'm glad to now see the benefits. I have seen all the potential they have to serve our people in Uganda. The trainings that have been given to both women and children is grate as we see transitions made in the women's lives as they learn skills and get to feel useful in our communities. You may not know this yet, but you did put a smile on my mother at Lwanda and my Aunty, who have lost all hope after they lost the only bread winners they had in their lives -husbands. Being part of a group with ability to learn and improve in different skills especially sewing, is giving many hope to seek for their own means of income.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have seen women and children under training with smiles on their faces and no doubt a renewed hope. I have also talked to several of the women that have gone through training and heard their voices of hope. Hoping to continually improve on their skills.

Ways to make it better...

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

No doubt solicit more funding for Fount of Mercy and Sewing hope, so that more women and children will be helped.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

I've enjoyed knowing the groups and seeing them put smiles on women and children' faces here.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

All geared towards wanting to serve and do all they can do to leave a skill or a smile and help in any way.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Improve the way our communities look at women and also help grow up children who have a stand in our communities.

Ways to make it better...

I would have more times to move along with you guys in most of the areas that you are serving in.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

All financial as this kind of gesture grows as more communities opens up with such needs of this great service. More funds will surely be needed.

One thing I'd also say is that...

There is many communities that are in great need and please prepare to reach there as well. My people in Kaliro will need your services and of course Arua and Nebbi as well. Be prepared.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

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