HELLO TO OUR FRIENDS AROUND THE WORLD FROM THE REAL MEDICINE FOUNDATION TEAM!
We decided to start a new monthly tradition: to update you about our work and our successes – both of which would not be possible without your ongoing emotional and financial support. We are excited to share the ripple effects with you. What started out as a promise to a small community in a devastated area in the Indian Ocean at the beginning of 2005, is growing quickly into an international network of "friends helping friends" around the world.
It is important for us that you know that every contribution makes a difference. That is why we would like to give you options of being part of our growing network of "friends helping friends". You can help us by spreading the word about our work to as many people as possible. You can volunteer and contribute your skills for whatever time period and to whatever extent you choose – every type of support is immensely appreciated! You can either give to our general fund or choose a specific project to contribute to. For example, even $10 can make a difference — $10 can support a child in our Montessori school in Sri Lanka for 10 days, or it can provide 10 wound care kits in Pakistan. A small amount can have a tremendous impact!!
Thank you for sharing our dream: together, from friend to friend to friend, we can make a difference in the lives of many, many people! The following pages are examples of how your support and contributions have helped us so far.
Dr. Martina C. Fuchs
Real Medicine Foundation
REPORT FROM THE GROUND IN PAKISTAN
The massive earthquake that struck Northern Pakistan on October 8th, 2005 caused death and devastation at an unprecedented scale. Everywhere, buildings have collapsed and landslides have blocked access to remote Himalayan valleys, leaving people without shelter, food and healthcare.
The Real Medicine Foundation is participating in relief efforts in the worst hit mountainous region (Mansehra, Balakot, Kotbala, Jabri). We have been working in collaboration with the HOAP Foundation in Pakistan, an organization which has been providing emergency relief operations on the ground ever since the October 8th earthquake killed more than 80,000 persons and left more than three million without shelter. The relief efforts have been targeted at the worst-hit areas and are offering services such as food, clothing, shelter, tents and medical camps.
With your help, we are supporting two basic health care units which are taking care of 20,000 people through the winter. We are providing medical care and medicines; we have hired a local doctor, and we are training local health care workers…
MONTESSORI SCHOOL IN SRI LANKA HIRES TEACHERS
Tangalle is a small town in the south of Sri Lanka, where most families were affected by the tsunami of December 2004. The main income of the majority of the families is fishing. The average monthly income is less than $30 for more than 75% of the families. Today, more than a year after the tsunami, the situation is still difficult for many families; and the children are the ones who suffer most.
The Real Medicine Foundation supported the construction of a Montessori pre-school and school that provides education and boarding for 25 tsunami-affected children in Tangalle, Sri Lanka…
REAL MEDICINE FOUNDATION FIGHTS AIDS IN INDIA
India is projected to have as many as 25 million HIV/AIDS cases by the year 2010, outnumbering all other countries. More than five million people in India are already infected with HIV and while the epidemic is now reaching the rural communities, the National AIDS Control Organization (NACO) is only gradually upgrading its Voluntary Counseling and Testing Program. The World Health Organization advocates the "right to know" in that every individual is entitled to know his or her HIV status.
The Real Medicine Foundation is working with the Jeevan Jyoti Health Service Society (JJHS), a local NGO in one of India’s poorest districts, where 85% of the population is tribal. The JJHSS is collaborating with the government in Jhabua district, to expand the Voluntary Counseling and Testing Centers, to educate the poor and mostly illiterate tribal population about HIV. Testing is offered by social workers who have been trained in Mumbai by the Wockhardt-Harvard Medical International HIV/AIDS Education Foundation. Through the Real Medicine Foundation’s support, three additional testing centers could be opened along with the one existing government center. The initiative also offers for the first time HIV counseling and testing to pregnant women at the district hospital. People living with HIV/AIDS are cared for and treated at JJHSS’s own 100-bed mission hospital…
ANTIRETROVIRAL (ARV) TREATMENT AMONG HIV AFFECTED WOMEN OF THE MIGRANT LABOR SYSTEM IN RURAL MOZAMBIQUE
The Real Medicine Foundation is collaborating with the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, MA and the African Millennium Foundation in Los Angeles and Mozambique (www.1amf.org) to start an ARV treatment program for women who are part of the migrant labor system in rural Mozambique.
Recovering from both a devastating civil war and recent floods, Mozambique remains a country in a delicate balance. This balance is becoming more precarious each day because Mozambique is also in the midst of a serious and expanding HIV epidemic. In 2004, it had a high HIV adult prevalence of 14.9%.
By adopting the Haitian model of the accompagnateur network (www.pih.org), we will use a grassroots approach to ensure ARV treatment effectiveness in rural Mozambique. Because of the high rates of HIV infectivity among populations involved in the migrant labor system, Xai Xai, a city along one of the major migration routes, has been chosen as the initial project site. Xai Xai, in the Gaza province, lies on the main road that miners use between their home villages and the South African mines. Initially, the project will target women, who are the wives of migrant laborers. This will facilitate the use of the local women’s microfinance organization that will be participating in this project. In addition, by training all female community healthcare workers to target female HIV patients, this will greatly contribute to women’s empowerment in Mozambique.
To learn more about the project to help Mozambique’s Women, a PDF of our proposal is available for download at the bottom of this page.
CHILDREN GIVE A VALENTINE’S DAY GIFT FROM HEART TO HEART
There are still 200 school children in the school system of the Catholic Diocese in Memphis displaced after Hurricane Katrina. Hannah decided that she wanted to use the occasion of Valentine’s Day to show them that they are not forgotten. She initiated a "Valentine’s project" at her school, Serrania Ave. Elementary in Los Angeles, California, to send valentines from Los Angeles to Memphis – our hearts to their hearts!
A LETTER FROM DIMUTHU – A TSUNAMI SURVIVOR’S UPDATE
First of all I wish you and the Real Medicine team a very successful new year. As you know I’m still continuing my Garment course which will complete in April this year. I am now completing my practical training at the Miami factory at Homagama (Colombo District – around 25 km from my boarding house) which is very good and with high technology machines. I’m very happy and satisfied with the training I’m getting at the factory. Madam I’m really thankful and grateful to you and the Real Medicine Organization for helping me and looking after me for the last five months. I really appreciate this for helping me and my family with my education in a very difficult time like this."
HOW YOU CAN HELP
Real Medicine Foundation’s Wish List
In addition to monetary donations, there are many items that would be very useful to our efforts if donated in kind or purchased for us.
Major needs include:
Volunteer Stipends: We need funding or donation of time to carry out repetitive website maintenance tasks. Computer programmers, graphic designers — we need your help!
Fundraising: Our development arm is in its infancy. We need people who are experienced with fundraising, who are good grant writers, and who have contacts with other foundations who fund projects such as ours.
Donations: Donations Are Tax-Deductible. The IRS recognizes the Real Medicine Foundation as a nonprofit organization under Section 501©(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. Accordingly gifts, contributions and grants of cash are tax deductible under U.S. federal or state law.
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