GAM 2022 PROJECTS COMPLETED
NEXT MEETING OF THE ADMINISTRATION BOARD OF GAM ASBL
The next GAM asbl Administration Board will take place on Wednesday 9 November.
It will approve, among other things, the GAM 2023 projects and the new composition of the Administration Board
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SHEPHERDING IN KENYA
"The traditional communities base their survival on agriculture, livestock, fishing, and the collection of fruits and wild honey. The Samburu are totally dedicated to shepherding, because the territory where they live is not suitable for agriculture. The best option is grazing, which allows their goats to forage among the bushes of the semi-desert. When there is rain and grass grows, the work goes more smoothly, as they do not need to travel far, but usually the terrain is extremely dry and the herding boys and girls have to cover long distances in the hot sun, arriving exhausted at the end of the day with their herds. The hope is that the herd will multiply quickly and they will have enough animals to provide stability for the family. The stability of the herd is threatened by predatory animals, by thieves from other tribes, but above all by the drought that cyclically strikes them and decimates their herds. The shepherds never give up hope and often have to start again with what little they have left".
Luis Carlos Fernández
GAM asbl Representative in Kenya
The GAM CALENDER 2023 is on sale!
More information on: email@example.com
BOARD OF DIRECTORS and GENERAL ASSEMBLY
In June, the 1st Board of Directors of GAM 2022 took place, followed by the General Assembly, during which the annual accounts of the association and the new composition of the GAM Board of Directors were approved. The latter will be ratified in October. At that time we will publish the organisation chart with the names of the new members. We thank the outgoing members for their support to the association over the years and we welcome the new candidates with joy and gratitude, confident that together we will continue to support GAM's projects, thus helping the most needy.
The GAM projects 2022 are in full swing and there is every indication that they will be completed on time and on budget. We are currently receiving and analysing proposals for new projects for 2023, which we will inform you about once they have been approved at the next GAM Board meeting in October 2022. You can find all the information about our projects on https://www.gam-asbl.com/events.html
WATER IN KOUNAHIRI
GAM asbl has been working to help those most in need by carrying out sustainable projects in the Ivory Coast for the past 12 years.
The north of the country is a place with a Muslim majority and indigenous cultures, and it is there, specifically in Kounahiri, where many of GAM's projects have been developed, aimed at eradicating poverty and fighting against inequalities in this African country.
The reality of this territory is demanding and the situation of poverty is visible and worrying. One of the greatest difficulties we encounter is the lack of water, a fact that has led us to seek resources and solutions to provide drinking water to the local communities.
In Kounahiri, several years ago, GAM asbl supported and financed the construction of a well with a water pump and, although thanks to this project the population was able to obtain drinking water, it was not enough for the days of drought that occur throughout the year. Similarly, in the village of Kounahiri, there was only one municipal borehole (a deep well drilled systematically to find large quantities of water) and this was used to distribute water in a punctual manner on certain days of the week to the entire population of around 6,000 people.
In May 2022, thanks once again to the collaboration and financial support of GAM asbl, a second borehole was built in the village, this time providing a large part of the local community with sufficient drinking water through the various projects implemented by GAM to date, such as: the chicken farm of the women's association, the literacy rooms, the parish, the reception centre and at least 30 families who will benefit from access to drinking water.
In Kongaso, also located in the north of Côte d'Ivoire, work is currently underway to design a similar initiative, which will be presented to GAM's Board of Directors in the near future, with the aim of implementing it in 2023.
Santiago Guzmán Pizarro
GAM asbl representative in Côte d'Ivoire
On 11 June, our traditional BBQ took place. Gradually we are getting back to normal, even if it takes time.
Although this year the number of participants was lower than in previous years, we are satisfied with the turnout. It was a very special day, during which we met again two years later with many acquaintances and benefactors of GAM asbl.
There was sunshine, a selection of tapas, a barbecue, delicious cakes for dessert, our famous tombola and even a mariachi band who delighted us with a beautiful repertoire of traditional Mexican songs.
Thank you all very much for your presence. To the volunteers, thank you very much for your collaboration. And to all of you, thank you for your support to GAM asbl and its sustainable projects to help the most vulnerable.
We look forward to seeing you at the GAM asbl Annual Dinner on 12 November.
See you there! Have a great summer!
GAM's activities have been marked by the crisis caused by covid-19, as all associations have suffered. Nevertheless, I would like to tell you that many of you who are reading this now have reacted positively to our calls to continue supporting GAM 2022 projects.
One thing is clear, we are coming out of a difficult period with the firm belief that we depend on each other. The world needs us all.
"Both optimists and pessimists contribute to society; the optimist invents the aeroplane, the pessimist the parachute." George Bernard Shaw.
Friends of GAM asbl, dear volunteers of our association, THANK YOU!
Amílcar Ferro B.
President of GAM asbl
One of the projects that GAM asbl is implementing this year, specifically in Kounahiri (Ivory Coast), aims to drill a borehole to obtain drinking water for the beneficiaries of the Welcome Centre, supported by GAM asbl in 2019, but also for part of the local population of Kounahiri.
This is an important and necessary project, as the lack of drinking water in the region has been one of the main challenges faced by these communities on a daily basis for many years.
Thanks to this borehole, which is currently under construction and will be completed in the coming months, access to this important resource will be made possible for our beneficiaries.
Direct beneficiaries: 500 people
Total budget: 6,030 €
Funding from GAM asbl: 5,700 € (94.5 %)
GAM Volunteers' Meeting
On 15 May, the 2nd GAM asbl Volunteers' Meeting took place in Brussels. Although, for various reasons, not all our volunteers were able to attend, we nevertheless managed to gather most of them and, between all of them, we shared a pleasant moment of conviviality and exchange of impressions and ideas for the future actions of our association.
After two years of pandemic, the traditional GAM barbecue is finally back.
Tickets on sale on www.gam-asbl.com/ (FR / ES)
Climate change is clearly being felt in the areas where GAM is developing its Samburu women's literacy project, which entered its third and final phase in January 2022. Since last year, in Lodoung'okwe (Kenya), we have been suffering from a major drought that is limiting the lives and wellbeing of our communities. This April, which is usually a rainy month, has been very dry. Some families have lost their animals, there is no milk, and many have had to migrate to other places to graze their animals. This situation has complicated the participation of the Samburu women in our training project, although, with great effort, they continue to attend their literacy courses whenever the situation allows.
On top of this, there has been a fuel shortage throughout the country for the past month; the price has doubled and this is having a huge impact on the communities. The prices of the little food they consume have increased by up to 50%. Those who have small shops in villages like ours are disappearing because of costs and debts. In addition, now in May the school year begins and families who have their children studying abroad have no way to send them. In short, it is a very complex situation for our communities.
Despite all this, the Samburu women do not lose their joy and hope that the situation will improve soon. Taking advantage of the school holidays and while their children were taking care of the herds, we organised for them, as part of GAM's training programme, a trip to Nairobi for exploration and training. An experience that they described as unforgettable and for which they are deeply grateful.
On the 5th of April, after a 7-hour journey, we arrived at an organic farm in the metropolitan area of Nairobi, where the beneficiaries of our project participated in a literacy and training workshop given by one of the teachers, Irene Lewanatoop. The training sessions lasted until the 8th of April and culminated with a city tour, thanks to which they got to know the most emblematic places of Nairobi and the country. Most of them did not know Nairobi even from television. Travelling with them was really fun and when they discovered the different cultures in their country, they were impressed and grateful to GAM, because it had allowed them to fulfil their dream.
This activity has helped them, without forgetting their roots, to discover their country, to open their minds in a space far from everyday worries, and where, treated with dignity and respect, they can grow as women thanks to the training given to them by a woman from their own Samburu tribe. This trip allowed them to discover that they are not only Samburu, but also Kenyans, and that, although they are marginalised, this part of the country also belongs to them. This experience also allowed them to discover that female genital mutilation and early marriages are practices that many tribes no longer practice. The experiences gained from this trip and the training workshop in Nairobi also allowed us to appreciate who they are.
Thank you GAM for the support you give us with this project. Thank you, because with your generosity you help to transform the lives of others.
Jimmy Gil Ocampo
GAM representative in Kenya
On the 19th of March the GAM event "Tapas y Alegría" took place. Our objectives were achieved and we managed to raise, thanks to the work and dedication of our volunteers and also to the art of dance, money to support the GAM 2022 and 2023 projects.
The event was a success in every way. The hall was filled to capacity and we were all able to enjoy a carefully prepared dance performance offered by GAM volunteers, as well as some delicious tapas, accompanied by a good Spanish wine. Thank you all for your support and collaboration!.
See you at Tapas y Alegría 2023!
Here is a reminder of GAM's projects for 2022:
- "Samburu women's literacy programme (3rd and final phase)". Location: Lodoung'okwe (Kenya).
- "Endowment and refurbishment of the community hall." Location: Lodung'okwe (Kenya).
- "Water for all: drilling a well for drinking water." Location: Kounahiri (Côte d'Ivoire).
More information about our projects at: https://www.gam-asbl.com/projects.html
While 2021 has continued to be marked by the pandemic, our community has faced other needs and difficulties. The most complicated of all has been the lack of rainfall, which has caused many families to migrate in search of pasture. In these situations, the women have to walk more kilometres with the animals, the water is not close, the animals are weak and there is no milk, a fundamental element in the Samburu diet. So it has been a very difficult time for our communities. All this has hit our Samburu women's literacy project very hard, as we have to be more patient, they have to walk further, they often arrive late and tired to the meetings or they can't get there at all. However, with the help of the teachers, it has been possible to consolidate two groups of women in each community, who continue with the literacy courses and other training spaces: in Nonkek, these two groups are supervised by Professor Ann; and in Lpus, by Professor Josephine. In addition, a new women's group has emerged in another village, led by Julita Lekoisa. In this way, we can grow and continue to offer our support, thus giving other women the opportunity to train and learn.
In order to maintain the participation of mothers of young children in education programmes, other elements need to be put in place to motivate them to persevere. Hence the importance of developing strategies that allow us to offer other elements of training and growth. In Nonkek, for example, before the dry season, we set up two productive projects with the two women's groups. We gave them five goats, so that in a few months these goats will procreate and the women will be able to benefit from the breeding of these animals. Although due to the drought we have not yet been able to see the expected results, the goats are doing well and when the rains come we will start to see the fruits. For this work we have put Irene, a young woman from the community who has already finished her university studies in social work, in charge of this work and who is helping us in the projects, especially with the women, providing them with training and accompaniment. The drought and their lack of availability has prevented us from carrying out some activities, such as the human formation trip to Nairobi. We hope that, with the arrival of the rains and when the peak of the pandemic is over, we will be able to carry it out.
This time of drought has pushed us to take action for them, since food is scarce, we must support them and, on school days, give them a snack. In spite of all the challenges we face at this time, it is nice to see how in the midst of need they unite, help each other and even go together to sing at the river asking God for the grace of rain.
In December, we celebrated Christmas with them and their families and in each community there has been a lot of joy and welcome. We have given the women in the programme a gift of art from GAM asbl, a piece of cloth that they use to dress themselves.
So, friends and benefactors of GAM asbl, we want to thank you for the help you offer us, the teachers and all the women involved in the project.
Jimmy Alexander Gil Ocampo
Representative of GAM asbl in Kenya
TAPAS Y ALEGRÍA
We present to you the event "Tapas y Alegría" which will take place on 19 March 2022, after three cancelled attempts due to the COVID pandemic.
The aim is to combine the art of dance with the joy of sharing delicious Spanish tapas in a relaxed atmosphere, while contributing to continue supporting GAM and its sustainable development projects in 2022.
Tickets are on sale now. You can purchase them by contacting us through our social networks or by sending us an email. Seating is limited and a Covid Safe Ticket will be required at the entrance. We look forward to seeing yout here!
In 2022, GAM asbl will support at least 3sustainable projects:
- "Samburu women's literacy programme (3rd andfinal phase)". Location: Lodoung'okwe (Kenya). Objectives: to provide Samburu women with adequate training to enable them to start a family business and to meet the schooling needs of their children. Empowerment of Samburu women.
- "Endowment and refurbishment of thecommunity hall." Location: Lodung'okwe(Kenya). Objectives: To repair the facilities of the multi-purpose community hall for training and human promotion sessions, as well as to equip it with the necessary material to facilitate the meetings of the local communities. This is an unprecedented project in the region.
- "Water for all: drilling a well for drinkingwater." Location: Kounahiri (Côte d'Ivoire). Objectives: to supply drinking water to the Reception Centre, financed by GAM in 2019, and to part of the population of Kounahiri. To improve the living conditions of the local community.
More information about our projects at: https://www.gam-asbl.com/projects.html
Christmas is coming and with it the last days of December. Consciously or unconsciously, we take stock of the year 2021, marked once again by the pandemic and its consequences, both health and economic. It has undoubtedly been a difficult year, in which the mistrust of some and the desperation of others have led to a generalised exhaustion from which no one knows when we will recover. However, all this should not prevent us from looking forward to 2022 with hope and excitement. Quite the contrary.
As I have stressed on previous occasions, I firmly believe that we must have (or develop) the capacity not only to be resilient, but also to overcome adversity. Take the example of GAM. In 2021 we had to cancel many of our activities and almost all of our scheduled events, except for the annual dinner, which finally took place on 13 November. We changed the date of two of our events several times in order to postpone them, but not to cancel them. However, in the end we had to exercise prudence and cancel them in the hope of finally being able to organise them in 2022.
However, despite the fact that we were not able to carry out most of what we had planned, it has been a fruitful year for our association. Both projects have been successfully completed and we have received generous enough donations and contributions from our benefactors to be able to meet the needs of all our beneficiaries. The support and dedication of GAM's friends, benefactors and volunteers (who by the way are becoming more and more numerous) has been impressive. We could not be more grateful. Solidarity and generosity have far outweighed selfishness and indifference. And that is what we are left with.
Therefore, when we take stock of this year, a complicated one for all of us, let us not forget to do so by changing our perspective and transforming, as far as possible (although there will always be situations that are difficult to deal with) the negative into the positive and turning hate into love.
To all a very Merry Christmas and may the year 2022 bring you light, health and hope.
Amílcar Ferro B.
President of GAM asbl