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2020 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Make A Difference Now

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Education, Secondary & High Schools, Universities

Mission: Join us on our mission to provide quality education to vulnerable children through scholarships, school improvement and career training programs. We invite you to volunteer with us, hike with us, donate or sponsor one or more of our students!

Results: Over the last ten years, MAD has provided scholarships to hardworking, talented children from impoverished and war torn backgrounds. Additionally, MAD has created innovative programs and facilities for students ranging from educational outdoor trips, up-to-date science labs and technology centers, girls empowerment workshops, sports programs, and libraries. Learn more by going to: https://www.gomadnow.org/impact

Target demographics: Low income and orphaned children and schools in developing nations and

Direct beneficiaries per year: 50,000 people in the Kilimanjaro Region

Geographic areas served: Developing nations such as Tanzania, Africa, Peru, Haiti and India

Programs: Check out our programs in Tanzania: http://www.gomadnow.org/programs/tanzania.php

Community Stories

105 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Life was terrible before God brought MAD into my life in 2008. With Make A Difference (MAD) my life was enhanced. I was introduced to life planning where I had to set a goal for my life. Before MAD I had no goals in life. I was also taught good manners and how to live a disciplined life. I was taken to the best English medium primary school and later to secondary school and now I am in one of the best Universities here in the country moving closer to my goals. I had people to take care of me and when I got sick, I was taken to the hospital. I had good food and I stayed healthy and focused on my education. I became aware of how important education is and that I struggle to attain success, help my grandparents and the community.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I spent a few days with the kids at Kilimanjaro Kids Care and MAD for the first time in 2011. In that time I was able to get to know each of the children (who weren't away at school at the time) by playing soccer, reading, and even visiting with two of the families in their local villages.

Along with getting to do a fundraising climb of Kilimanjaro, I also participated in the inaugural Machu Picchu climb. Theresa's continued commitment to getting people involved in the fundraising for and interaction with the organization is commendable and I will continue to to support whenever I am able.

The children are wonderful and they will immediately capture your heart and Theresa is a strong and capable leader. The sustainable approach is one that should be mimicked and I can't wait to see the growth and development as the years go by. I love MAD!

Vicki35

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I first heard of Make a Difference when the mother of the young lady who started it came to our church and gave a talk about how she was called to begin this organization, and how it came to be. I have known this young lady all of her life, and have always known her to be a caring and loving individual, but never thought that she would go in this direction in her life. When she revealed her story to us, and showed us the pictures of all the children and families that she has helped, it was amazing! She is an inspiration to all who know her. We're all so proud of everything she has been doing, here in her home town. Her cause is so worthy, and she just keeps expanding, and finding more ways to help the families in Africa and India to educate and establish a successful future for themselves, and especially their children.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

MAD is a wonderful organization with a great mission. They really put a lot of focus on the development of the children and their well being, and when you visit you can definitely tell that the kids are the first priority above anything else. They have a wonderful local staff, and when you are there they really go above and beyond to make you feel at home and like you are really a part of something great. Theresa is a wonderful woman with a great vision and she has created one of the best NGOs I have had the pleasure of working with from the ground up. In 2012 they also had one of the best long term volunteers on staff that worked amazingly well with the volunteers, and made for a memorable experience for everyone who was involved. I would recommend Make a Difference to anyone, and encourage people to get involved with the organization in any way that they can.

1 pat35055

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My wife and I spent time in Tanzania with this great organization. The kids are wonderful and Theresa is an outstanding leader. She has a huge heart for both the children and the community. We cannot wait to go back and see the kids again!!

Lyne' R.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I spent time with Theresa and her staff with the children at MAD in Tanzania in March of this year. Both my husband and I fell in love with the kids and have become child sponsors. The program is structured, loving and seeks the best for both the children and the community. Theresa is tireless in her efforts to help these kids and seeks to find individual school situations that maximizes the development of their talents. She has a unique understanding of the culture and works for the betterment of the community.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Actions speak louder than words. And with Make A Difference, my actions with them speak more than any review could say. I have volunteered with MAD every year for the past 3 years. I fell in love with the NGO, Theresa (the founder), the kids, and their mission back in 2011 and from that moment on I knew I wanted them to be a daily part of life not just a distant memory

MAD moves you. It moves your soul and your heart. As a volunteer you better their organization and as an organization they better you. I have volunteered with MAD Tanzania, MAD India, and did the MAD Climb for the Kids. I have had two friends go and volunteer with them, and will continue to encourage everyone I encounter to do the same.

MAD is truly a great non profit. Thank you MAD!

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering with Make a Difference Now is like joining a family. From the moment I stepped off the plane in Tanzania and was greeted by Emmanuel to meeting Theresa to the kids, I felt like this is where I belonged. From the food, the Kswahili lessons, the pen pal letters, my host family, to the laughs of all the kids and the songs, everyday I think of being a part of MAD and it makes my day better. I have volunteered with MAD at both Tanzania and in India. I loved both and am hoping to return to Tanzania to do the Climb for the Kids. Make a Difference NOW is truly changing lives- not just the kids they are setup to help, but they are changing the lives of every volunteer who joins them. I wish I could make MAD a part of my life everyday.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I'm in Tanzania now helping Theresa with marketing and strategy. She's an amazing woman, and has done so much for the children here! It is wonderful to see the effects of her work first-hand, and to help raise funds for such a wonderful, and very fiscally responsible, organization!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I spent a brief but inspiring time with Theresa and the children at the orphanage in Himo. The love,commitment and caring I witnessed between Theresa, the house mothers, and the children was something this world needs more of. I believe the difference being made in the lives of the children and in the community by Theresa and MAD is inspirational.

Board Member

Rating: 5

My trip to Tanzania to volunteer with Make a Difference was meant to be a one-time experience that has turned into four trips in total and a position on the Board of Directors. Executive Director and Founder, Theresa Grant, is the heart and soul of an organization that gives so much to children in both Africa and India. She inspires the kids, the staff and the volunteers each and every day. It's impossible for the kids not to touch the hearts of everyone who volunteers with the program. They even inspired me to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro this summer to raise funds for their education funds. This is a first-class organization!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As someone who was fortunate enough to spend time volunteering with Theresa and the wonderful kids at MAD, I can truly say it was a life-altering experience that changed my perspective on Africa, orphans, and the magnitude of change a few, dedicated individuals can make. Our trip to Tanzania was the first time any of us had been in Africa or an orphanage and to be completely honest, we had no idea of what to expect. All we knew up to the point of our departure was what we had seen through images in the news, television, and movies…. or in other words, an unflattering image of a highly-unstable continent full of danger and desperation lurking on every corner. Yet, nothing could be further from the truth, and I give much gratitude and appreciation to Theresa and MAD for designing a comprehensive volunteer program that enabled us to truly see the country and the orphanage as it is. She ensured that our experience spanned beyond the orphanage walls to include the local environment, culture, and its people, leaving us with a holistic impression of the world the orphanage operates in, thereby better informing the work we were doing. Our experience far surpassed our expectations on every conceivable level and I highly, highly recommend MAD to anyone looking to make a difference. You will not be disappointed!

Donor

Rating: 5

My name is Barbara Wilkinson. I have been a donor for MAD for two years as well as a volunteer. I volunteered in Tanzania in 2011 and 2012. My experience has been incredible with this organization, the wonderful children, the culture of the country, the warm welcome of Theresa and Emanuel (Theresa's assistant) upon arrival and through-out my stay. With each visit I have stayed just a little over 2 weeks. Getting to know these children has been the most rewarding experience of my life. The children are grateful and appreciative for everthing the organization/Theresa has given them...the opportunity to learn, to grow, to plan and look forward to a successful life. They each have a drive to give back to their community once they have finished school. Theresa, her team, donors, interns and volunteers have truly made a difference for so very many in Tanzania and India. I know that the money is funneled directly for education, clothing, food, medical and dental expenses. There is so much I could write about Theresa and the children of the orphanage in Tanzania. I encourage all to look at the MAD website, plan a trip to meet this fanastic group. I will never forget my experience there. I will continue to support this great organization and plan to make my 3rd trip in Sept. 2013. Theresa truly is a dedicated, loving, motivated and brave young lady. I admire her strength and ability to give so much of her life in helping others.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Make A Difference works! With the support of donors, volunteers and staff they have improved the lives of the many people in the communities where they work. I highly recommend volunteering at one of their programs, which is a life changing experience; or donating to fund the work of their staff and volunteers. Go MAD!

marcialiebich

Donor

Rating: 5

I met Theresa five years ago. Since then I have served in an advisory capacity and my husband and I have been donors. I am impressed with her dedication to the children she serves and her efforts to work with their extended families. The academic achievement of many of the children is excellent. We have not yet volunteered, but intend to visit her in Tanzania in 2014 with our family.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

MAD is a wonderful non-profit in Tanzania that helps educate orphaned children through secondary school, as a means out of poverty. They also provide housing, medical care, nutrition programs, sports opportunities, and art therapy and emotional support for these children who have lost their parents. The children have consistently performed extremely well in school and routinely go on to excellent secondary boarding schools in Tanzania. This program nourishes both the soul and minds of these children and it's leader, Theresa Grant, is wholly invested in their futures. The program receives much local acknowledgement and is on its way to being a self-sustaining program. It was an honor and privilege to volunteer in Tanzania with this non-profit. I can't wait to see what type of men and women these children become.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Revogatus Tesha. I am a form three student at Tengeru Boys Secondary School in Arusha Tanzania. The Make a Difference adopted me when I was in grade 5(2006). From then my life chaned. Its paiful to think of how my future would be a misery if MAke A Difference would have set an eye to me. It helped me, it helps me and I believe it will continue helping me. Its not only be but with many others whose fate would just be as mine without MAD. I am greatful for that uneven that cant be well experssed by these short words. I am in school now, as one of so many services the organisation is taking care of for me. I finding myself short of words for the orgaisation has already done a lot. Madam Theresa and others at the organisation use a lot of time to think of our future. I once heard her say, "we will sell everything we have for our kids education". They pay us frequent visits to school. They normally ask for what do we need(timely). Make a difference means my future! Anyone who gives Make a Difference, changes the life of so many African Children and many more.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Deogratias Riwa. I am a form three student at Tengeru Boys. I have been supported with Make a Difference since 2006. MAke a Difference is a hand that holds many of us who were about to fall under the pit of poverty. We could not pay for our basic needs, education nclusive. Now we are provided with education and other basic needs. MAke a Diffrence is really interesting for we are highly cared for. We can imagine our future,we are certain that with MAD we will make our dreams come true. We thank the Make A difference organization for all it has done to us. I would like to ask for the donours to support this non profit for the benefit of young poor African children who are living in vulnerable conditions.Thank you!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering and teaching with Make A Difference and The Royal School in Kilimanjaro was such a rewarding experience! Working with the happy smiles and hearts of the kids at MAD made each activity .from delivering sports programs to educational workshops and tutoring such a fun and enriching experience. MAD works hard to address the needs of the community and ensure that the children it cares for are provided with sustainable, meaningful and engaging opportunities. I am happy to know that such programs work hard to ensure peace and development for vulnerable children.

Jeannie3

Board Member

Rating: 5

The greatest thrill of my life was to be asked by Theresa and MAD to serve on their Board. I had first met Theresa in 2010 at a friend's birthday party where instead of gifts we gave donations to MAD. Theresa came to make a presentation and she had pictures of all the children displayed at the party. The moment I saw them, I knew I would be going to Tanzania and indeed, I went with 3 friends that Fall. The children changed my life and ever since that trip, I've been spreading the word and getting others involved. It is so wonderful to see how the kids respond to the attention and love provided by volunteers and donors. And, absolutely everyone who participates in some way feels their lives have been changed for the better. It's difficult to explain the magic that is MAD, but it really does live up to its name -- the organization is not only changing the lives of the children and their families/villages, but all who have the privilege to work with them. -jeannie logozzo

Veronika B.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

Working with Theresa Grant and Make A Difference was truly amazing. During my nine months in Tanzania and Moshi I got the chance to get to know her and the wonderful children at Kilimanjaro Kids Care. The experience was incredible and this is really something I recommend to people out there who wants to volunteer. Theresa is an amazing person with a big heart and when I saw how much she has given these children and how much they love and appreciate her as their guardin it was stunning. She have thought me a lot about life at my young age and I couldnt be more thankful for having her as a friend. Thank you!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This is my second year since i heard about MAD. Actually before i learned about this non profit, I met two beneficiaries who are the students at the school i was once the Headmaster. this is Tengeru Boys. Its this MAD organization that has manged to send these well perfoming boys and many others in other schools. MAD has chosen to give to kids, quality education. Yoy know most of the charities just use to educate the boys and girls! MAD offers the opportunity for the girls and boys to have the access to the best schools on the land. Tengeru Boys Secondary school for example, is one of the best schools in Tanzania, its the first in the Region. Any student who secures a place for admission there, is assured of scoring the first grade i.e division I.I would like to advise other non profits to take a leaf out of MADS page!!!!!Thank you,Andrew Ngazu, Arusha, Tanzania.

Kelly66

Donor

Rating: 5

M.A.D is a fantastic organization that goes out of their way to fully-serve the children they work with. They focus on the whole-child and work within the community to provide individualized care and services. Here in the states we might call something like this an I.E.P - and individualized education plan....this is what this organization provides...but it goes beyond education. In addition, they are willing to think out of the box and come up with creative approaches for support. I had an idea for Christmas gifts this year. Theresa worked with me via email to make my Christmas Gift Project a reality. Last year I did this project on a much smaller scale and it was a HUGE success. I'm excited to take this project to a higher level this year and can't wait to see the response. I couldn't have done this with any other organization. Theresa's personal knowledge and expertise about the region and children have been invaluable with my project.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering with MAD was one of the most incredible experiences I have had in my young adult life. I participated in the Kilimanjaro fundraiser climb and I cannot recommend it enough. The joy that these children brought me during my short time in Tanzania will stay with me for a lifetime. Everyone was so welcoming and embraced us from the moment we arrived. As a volunteer you are encouraged to bring your own special touch to the orphanage - whether it's teaching the kids how to swim or introducing them to a basketball. There is a huge emphasis on education at Kilimanjaro Kids Care, and much time is spent working with the children one-on-one. One of the most exciting things for me is being given the opportunity to now watch the children grow and learn. Theresa is so passionate about this organization and it shows. Many volunteers are repeat visitors - I hope to be one someday, too! Theresa and her local staff also run a tight ship when it comes to the volunteer logistics, which was so important to me while being far away from home.

Bridget6

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I spent spend a week with the kids in Tanzania volunteering with Make A Difference. The program was established to develop, promote and support orphanages and schools in Africa and India. They have helped disadvantaged children rise above poverty and given them the tools they needed to establish and reach their education goals. With their focus on empowering orphaned children to focus on their education and health, we knew this was where we wanted to volunteer. We had an incredible week with the kids reading to them, making jewelry and painting their school cafeteria. The kids all have an intensive drive to succeed and great plans for helping their community once they are finished with University. They time I spent with MAD and the kids was truly life changing and one I will never forget!

Jana4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering for Make a Difference was one of the most inspiring experiences I have had. When reflecting back on my time at Kilimanjaro Kids Care I can't help but smile and feel extreme happiness for the opportunity that I had hanging out with them. Theresa Grant has created an environment of safety, full bellies emphasizing on nutritious foods, and lots of play time. The biggest emphasis however is on education. Theresa believes that even though these children have had horrific pasts, they can and will become productive members of society in the future. When writing back and forth with these children they always write about their very big dreams that can become realities because of the emphasis on education they are receiving. I will continue to support this group because I can clearly see that the money I am sending really will Make A Difference.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a Tanzanian what I am proud of Make A Difference (MAD) in Tanzania is love and commitments. Theresa Grant is really a perfect coordinator and knows how to work with every body under any condition. The funds and material that are targeted to kids are surely taken to the proper place. If you ask me I will say she is the best women and coordinator that I have currently see in Tanzania.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I often reflect how incredible my time I spent with MAD was, how much it has given me and how I will carry the experience with me throughout my life. Given the freedom to offer up my own personal skills within a structured volunteer time gave me the realization that all that is needed to give back is a spirit of open mindedness, and the ability to realize your own knowledge and pass it on. I feel incredibly lucky to have been apart of a community, as well as a family half way across the world. MAD has given me the ability to make connections with the world around me and offer up my skills willingly. I fully plan on returning and spending time with my Indian family again, as well as all the students!

Donor

Rating: 5

I am so proud of Theresa Grant - the founder of Make A Difference. She truly has made a difference in hundreds of lives. She has proven that one person with a vision can change lives and make the world a better place. She and her team are making education the foundation to give orphaned children the opportunity to succeed in their own lives. They are gaining the confidence to know that they can grow up to make a difference in their own community. These children are driven and grateful for every chance they have to learn and grow. We need more people like Theresa and her team in this world.

Karen98

Donor

Rating: 5

Theresa is passionate about her work through Make A Difference. She is always innovating and improving the lives of kids in Kilimanjaro. I'm so impressed by her spirit and love for others! We are regular donors and I appreciate knowing that the money is funneled directly into making a difference in the lives of so many.

Mary105

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering w/ MADD was extremely rewarding. They were wonderful to work with!