Greetings from Grace Kuto – President, Harambee Board of Directors
Jambo to Harambee friends and supporters,
It has been quite some time since you have heard from me, especially through Harambee Centre. While under the radar, the winds of life have blown me in a few different directions but I am honored to be invited back by the Board to be Harambee’s president again. Retiring in December 2015, in better health, and with much gratitude; I am more inspired to help keep the Harambee Mission’s candle aflame along with our amazing Board members and your thoughtful support.
As we prepare to celebrate 15 years next year of our transformational local and global work, we thank you all again for faithfully running this marathon with us and being part of this powerful legacy. Through these years, your support has transformed many lives locally and globally. This is a good time for us to reflect on our three pillars that continue to drive and keep Harambee’s Mission alive:
1. Cultural Education
Local: To inform, educate, and enlighten people of our local community about the cultures and realities of the vast and varied societies of Africa.
- Africa Is Not a Country Curriculum has reached many students and teachers in the Pacific Northwest region in partnership with the Global Education program of the World Affairs Council of Oregon.
- Annual International Day of the African Child has provided cultural awareness to hundreds of families and students in greater Portland and its surrounding areas. We will continue to celebrate Annual Cultural Awareness under a new name Harambee African Festival starting August of 2016.
2. Cultural Exchange Trips
Global: To build bonds of understanding, respect, and mutually beneficial relationships between people in the Pacific Northwest and people of Africa
- Cultural Exchange trips to and from Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda. Hundreds of volunteers including teachers, students, professors, interns, residents, nurses, doctors, building contractors, business owners, church leaders, engineers, and a police officer have traveled to and from our partner communities.
To support self-sustainable projects in African communities by generating funds from resources in our communities in partnership with communities in Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda.
- Annual African dinner fundraising events. Since 2001, we have raised more than $200,000 through these events alone to support the projects.
- Annual Harambee Walk is a new event we hope you will be excited to join every spring to have fun while you make a difference together with some of our Kenyan runners who have left foot prints on the world track.
Once again, we are approaching a season of reflection about the meaning of our lives and giving. As you meaningfully contemplate on where you should direct your gifts, please consider giving generously to our work at Harambee Centre this year to help us complete construction of the Chwele Community Resource and Peace Centre in Kenya.
We have and we continue to impact so many lives both locally and globally in areas of education, healthcare, and small businesses because of your past support. For example, locally, we continue to be a powerful and reliable resource on African cultural education and awareness. In 2016, we will continue to forge new community partnerships to explore the possibilities of how we can better meet the cultural needs of our local community especially those of the exponentially growing immigrant descent. So we invite you to continue this marathon with us to impact those we serve for many generations to come.
On behalf of our Board, I wish you and your loved ones a very fulfilling Holiday Season and Peaceful 2016!
With much gratitude,
The girl’s dormitory at St Andrews Secondary School, will soon be a reality! We are extremely excited and grateful to announce that we received a generous $200,000 grant from the Nike Ever Higher Fund, which fully funds the project. Read more.
The Chwele Community Peace Center provides life-transforming educational and cultural exchange opportunities to empower women, children and their families. We need to raise $35,000 in order to complete this project.
Harambee African Festival
Plan to join us in August 2016 for a big African cultural awareness event. Taste the delicious varieties of food and hear the calling drums and melodic music. The Harambee African Festival celebrates the cultural diversity in all of us. Read More.
Tanzania Sewing Project
The second phase of our Tanzania project is now fully funded. The women will learn how to make more complicated garments to expand their businesses. Thank you to all our supporters who made this possible.
SAVE THE DATES!
Friday March 18th, 5:30 to 8:30pm – African dinner benefit at George Fox University (Portland Center)
Wednesday May 11th, 5:30 to 8:30pm – African Dinner Celebration and Benefit (15th Year Anniversary) at Portland State University (Smith Memorial Student Union Ballroom)