Fair warning: this is a completely personal post. It has not a thing to do with Boise Weekly, being the editor of Boise Weekly, content in Boise Weekly ... you get it.
Michelle Kowalczyk is a friend from high school who's a nurse. Together with a woman named Kim Krowne, she started Knock Foundation in Tanzania in 2007 to help orphaned children (most of whom live with AIDS) at the Matumaini Child Care Organization. Both Matumaini and Knock are non-profit, non-religious and non-governmental.
Since its inception, the foundation has:
• planted vegetable gardens for the kids
• rebuilt safe and ventilated latrines
• built new beds with mosquito netting and sheets (before this project, 17 kids shared six twin-size beds without crucial netting, which helps prevent malaria)
• run a water pipeline directly to the care facility providing contaminate free running water and eliminating lengthy, dangerous trips to the nearest water source.
Currently Michelle is in the U.S. fundraising, while Kim is still in Tanzania. This morning, I got an e-mail from Kim. Here's an excerpt:
"Two weeks ago, we purchased enough food for all 316 students at Mrupanga Primary School to eat school lunch everyday this year. It comes to about $12 per year per child, to eat everyday for a year. The dollar goes quite a long way. We also want to buy about $2,000 worth of textbooks for them as many classes have 7-10 students per one textbook.
And our largest project is to purchase a plot of land on which to build Matumaini Child Care a new home that will allow us to better care for them, take in more children, and hold important educational courses and seminars for the villages we serve. We are writing some grants for this, but still need a lot of help in the land cost and the cost that we will incur after building as the yearly operating budget will certainly increase."