News updates from Betty Makoni: Good news and good people follow me
(Last updated: 10 June 2012)
Girl Child Network Worldwide is now positioned globally
Thank you so much for contacting me. I must be open and say due to a huge volume of emails I receive daily I take a little bit of time to respond. But please don’t despair; I always respond personally and so whilst you wait I give some news updates so that all friends, supporters, family members, donors and fans that follow and support my work are fully updated on many developments and achievements taking place as I take my leadership of Girl Child Network Worldwide to a global level. As you are aware, I took some two years working with trustees and volunteers setting up administration and finance systems as well as programs for Girl Child Network Worldwide, a new international charity supporting girls in Zimbabwe, Uganda, Sierra Leone and South Africa. I am happy and delighted to report that the two years were not wasted; Girl Child Network Worldwide is now set up and we have started rolling out a five year strategy where we are determined to put in place a first ever Girls Empowerment and Education Fund in place to reach out directly to some of the most vulnerable girls in Africa. Through sheer hard work and determination the fund is in place and people are donating daily. It is one dollar for one girl at a time. It is step by step and country by country. I had the inner confidence I would do it and went ahead and did exactly that. Everyone I work with has the same inner confidence and this is what makes our team great.
I just want to ask and encourage you to read all news updates below. Many times I am in the field speaking, training and inspiring people in different parts of the world so that they support Girl Child Network Worldwide. So please read to the end as sometimes I might visit your area. I would not want to miss you.
Also if you organise an event feel free to invite me to speak and share stories from my newly published autobiography. I extend personal invitation to you to attend some events where I will be speaking as stated below.
Two prestigious awards position Girl Child Network Worldwide globally
The last two months have seen two awards for excellence, innovation and commitment coming our way. What a coincidence that both prestigious awards came from two inspirational organisations; Women4 Africa and Afrikan Goddess awards Media. How symbolic that London and Washington DC are the two big capital cities where I have been given standing ovations after my acceptance speeches at awards ceremonies. It is symbolic that after the many persecutions I suffered some two years ago from women from my own country, Zimbabwe who wanted to stop my work through defamatory online articles, I get some African women I have never met and known endorsing me in this special way. To me this is an endorsement that as GCNW we must keep the work in girls’ empowerment in Africa and globally going-we have the passion and our girls empowered daily and all over the world are a clear testimony that we can deliver if supported morally and financially.
At the Afrikan Goddess awards ceremony in Washington DC, I felt moved when a girl I helped at age 12, Esther Saidi, who is now at a top University in Washington DC, joined organisers of the award to present me with the award. I never thought a poor girl in a poor village in Zimbabwe would one day be a holder of a Politics and Economics major as well as accounting. I never knew starting an empowerment program for girls in a poor high density classroom would see girls working in all parts of the world and sharing their skills for the betterment of the world like this. What started as a small community project but we have become global and the world has opened doors for my empowered girls. I am here to embrace more opportunities and support more girls. Ten years is time good enough to see an empowered woman from a girl.
Our story is shared and celebrated globally and we now have thirty prestigious awards. Please enjoy the two awards ceremonies here and I will keep updating the news on the awards and what impact they have made in our work as GCNW. Enjoy the pictures and enjoy our story as it is positioned globally to inspire many.
Afrikan Goddess awards ceremony in Washington DC, USA: 9 June
Women4 Africa awards ceremony: London, United Kingdom: 19 June
More events coming; I might be close where you live, Come for inspiration
This year I have been invited to many events to speak and I extend the invitation to you. I love meeting people face to face and hopefully you can pick a venue. I will be signing my newly published autobiography at all events below and be sure to grab your copy.
30 June, Speaking at Roosevelt Girls Fundraiser, Brentwood, Essex
I believe that fundraising support should go to girls’ education. I was invited to speak in support of a fundraiser for a girls school in Zimbabwe. I will be attending and encourage friends to attend too. I am going to donate my official autobiography which will be auctioned on the night. I believe that as long as fundraising targets girls even if GCNW is not the organiser and primary beneficiary, we must do everything to support. Please support me to support many other girls in Zimbabwe.
9 July, ZIMARTS Mbuya Chiweshe event, London UK
This is a special event where renowned Mbira player, Mbuya Stella Chiweshe will perform. I am invited to speak and sign my autobiography as well as share GCNW work. I am extending invitation to you all.
14 July Girl Child Network Worldwide is International South end Street Painting & Festival of the Arts
I will be representing GCNW and come and get a copy of my signed autobiography and get some unique art works from Zimbabwe.
16 RESTORED UK Trustee meeting, Paddington UK
Check our website here and support in any way. Attendance to meetings is strictly by invitation only but do visit our website http://www.restoredrelationships.org/ and take part in our programs. The idea is to build a global alliance of churches to combat violence against women and girls.
21 July, Launch of new church-Details coming soon
25 to 26 July Key note Speaker at Global Conference for women in Johannesburg South Africa
I am a key note presenter at GP Women’s conference running 25 – 26 July 2012 at the Indaba Hotel in Fourways, Johannesburg. My presentation is on 25 July at 09:15 – 10:00. Please email me for see the brochure. If you would like attend please feel to welcome. You will receive a discount for booking through me.
Registers now and let’s meet in South Africa www.gptrainingsa.com
Please note that I will conduct meetings round South Africa until mid-August 2012. Be sure to meet me and get a copy of my book
Launching of Girl Child Network USA Chapter in Los Angeles
After some two years of hard work with young men and women in Los Angeles, they have finally registered GCN USA and it is an organisation they are strengthening now now. I am so delighted with this latest development as it means our efforts to mobilise support for girls is getting stronger by the day. I am doing everything possible to transition my leadership to GCN USA so that all fundraising projects initiated in USA are managed directly in the country. The more we decentralise and build more networks the more the world helps girls more effectively and efficiently. Many hands make the work easier.
Below is news via their Facebook group page and announcement of their development. On 11 to 12 June I will be in Los Angeles training the youths as well as ensuring systems are in place to set up the Girls Empowerment and Education Fund.
Below is a press release from GCN USA
Welcome to the Girl Child Network United States. Still in its founding year, the GCNUSA is a developing organization in need of membership and filling out of various leadership positions. Our intention is to create a US based organization that can publicize and fundraise for the Girl Child Network Worldwide within the United States. According to our 5 year plan, we intend to have the capacity to fully fund numerous projects of the GCN in Zimbabwe and Africa. Our goal is to educate and empower the exploited youth in Zimbawe and provide them with the opportunity to grow in their respective communities. The organziation was jointly founded by Gabe Gilbert-Lurie, Ameek Shokar and Alec Eginli. If you have been added to this group then you were recommended by at least one of our board members or Betty Makoni to serve this organization in some capacity.
More than before we have various representatives in USA as follows and please contact them direct and be part of GCN USA. All donations are directly made to GCN USA:
Alec Egili- email@example.com (Board of Directors: Los Angeles)
Nalinika Perera- firstname.lastname@example.org (New York Representative)
Jolene Thomas- email@example.com (Washington Ambassador)
Please note website is still under construction.
Girl Child Networks in Africa: Updates
Girl Child Network Worldwide has four Girl Child Networks actively operating in Africa at a small scale due to limited funding. A Memorandum of Understanding was signed with all Country representatives so that we are clear on our partnership and Modus operandi.
So far we have four Girl Child Networks in Africa operating and benefitting over 100 000 girls with empowerment and leadership programs through clubs. This helps the girls to defend their rights and ensure there is gender equality in the home, school and community. I am greatly inspired by the leadership we have in Africa and all efforts to fundraise at local level have helped some networks to keep their operations. However, more institutional support is needed to ensure more qualified staff is employed to run programs more efficiently and effectively. More funding is critical to strengthen program implementation so that many girls benefit. There have been more and more girls knocking on doors of GCN networks in Africa for help.
Many girls keep coming forward for urgent appeals for school fees, rape therapy, counselling, requests for support with vocational training, funds for empowerment girls clubs activities, urgent appeals to be rescued from forced marriages and other harmful cultural practices, appeals for HIV and AIDS treatment. We have requests for training and girls empowerment kits. We have many requests for funds for office buildings, vocational training centres and setting up girls empowerment centres. I encourage direct donations be channelled to our Country representatives whose contact details are below:
Tier 1-Girl Child Network Zimbabwe
They have a new country representative, Edinah Masanga and she is on email firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow them on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Girl-Child-Network-Zimbabwe/336015311229
Website is being updated on www.gcnzimbabwe.org
Girl Child Network Uganda
The organisation is doing very well under the leadership of Memory Bandera. They are relatively new but have done very well in fundraising for girls vocational training and setting up a vocational centre for girls. They have some urgent appeals for funding to set up a girls shelter. Memory Bandera is on email: email@example.com
Girl Child Network Sierra Leone
Anita Koroma is the leader and she is an inspiring woman who is doing field work with girls clubs across the county. She made an appeal for funds for a girls centre and girls empowerment clubs training. She is contacted directly on firstname.lastname@example.org and their Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/girlchildnetworksierraleone?ref=ts#
Girl Child Network South Africa is based in rural South Africa and in Polokwane and they were recently registered as a charity in South Africa. Their contact is email@example.com
UN International Day of the girl child organising and coordinating
Our partnership to launch UN International Day of the girl child is now sealed with IROCK and just waiting to get the ball rolling. We are now on the go to launch the first Girls Global Empowerment and Leadership Conference as well as Girls Global Empowerment Awards for 2012 in London. Through whatever medium of communication they can get close to wherever they are girls will be invited to submit stories, poems, songs, art, academic results, progress reports at school, co-curricular activities that show they are making a break through into male dominated fields. Also girls who do most of the advocacy work at community level and are invisible in many parts of the world where our networks are situated will receive worldwide recognition and support starting 2012. We will honour the girls who survive to tell their stories as well as those who lead and can be supported to reach their potential as women leaders. Women role models round the world are registering for this day and support for awards ceremony. More meetings to pull everything together in partnership with IROCK are underway. Girls’ advocacy and speaking out is going to be taken back to the girls in every part of the world and they all will confirm to us no girl is a victim, they are all victorious. Please email direct to firstname.lastname@example.org if interested.
Major donor applications: Work in progress
Girl Child Network Worldwide applauds DFID for launching girls’ education fund. The organisation has partnered with all their networks in Africa to submit project proposals. GCNW has submitted and keeps submitting applications for funding to various major donors. Also GCNW has partnered with three organisations to submit joint funding.
GCNW culture of documentation-More girls’ empowerment manuals to be published
Many manuals will be produced to capture our locally based best practices in rape therapy, rescue missions for girls at risk, counseling, how to start and run girls clubs, girls empowerment programs and how we do participatory monitoring and evaluation of our programs. All books will be produced online by end of 2012 and please watch this space. All manuals will be available online and we hope to be one of the best centres for producing simple training manuals for girls in remote parts of the world so that they can use the knowledge to empower themselves. All is set now and we are excited.
Support Girls Empowerment and Education Fund-Donate a dollar on line
GCNW has worked endlessly to set up donation on-line links so that your donation reaches its beneficiaries safely and in whole. My work to set up a Girls Empowerment Fund continues and I invite you to donate £1-£10 per year and encourage your family and friends to do the same. Just last week a girl from Zimbabwe sent me an
inbox message to say she obtained 15 points in her exams at A level. This is after she had suffered two years out of school. As long as girls call me I will work harder to ensure they are in school. Please support by donating to our girls fund as we have critical areas to fund in Zimbabwe, Sierra Leone, and Uganda. Many urgent appeals are received daily from girls in Africa.
Our stories is being shared passionately
On another note; our story is included in yet another amazing book just launched in London called On the Up. It features stories of Entrepreneurs in Africa who are trying to do the impossible. Nikki and Rob is a couple that travelled to Africa documenting innovative projects by social entrepreneurs and they also visited Girl Child Network Zimbabwe. They were so moved by the hard work, passion and commitment of staff and volunteers and went to share the story.Please visit link here for details on the book entitled On The Up http://www.betterworldbooks.co.uk/On-the-Up-id-9780957202702.aspx
The documentary Tapestries of Hope is showing in USA and please visit their website if you want copies. I tried very hard to share the story so that many women and girls heal in the world http://tapestriesofhope.com/
Trustees and Ambassadors for Girl Child Network Worldwide
This is to announce to you that Mutsa Mandizha, a prominent Zimbabwean community leader and health expert in UK has accepted to be one of our trustees. She comes with many skills and knowledge in project development and public relations. We warmly welcome her. GCNW also selected Pauline Long Founder of the Biggest Black and entertainment awards company –BEFTA to join our trustees. Details are being worked out with Pauline Long, a well-known Kenyan philanthropist who has helped a lot of charities in UK and Africa.
Girl Child Network Worldwide would like to invite any women and men(as long as 18 years and up who want to help at governance level to feel welcome as there are still three more vacancies to fill in. Please send your email in confidence to email@example.com and I will pass it on to our trustees. Volunteers are very welcome .http://www.girlchildnetworkworldwide.org/get-involved/
ON A PERSONAL NOTE, GOOD NEWS FOLLOWS ME
My official autobiography out soonest
My official biography will be out soonest and this coincides with mybirthday on June 22. Please keep watching this space. I have read it many times and I am excited that my story is in one piece. The book is entitled Never Again, Not to any woman or girl again. Very straight what I want to see- violence against girls must stop. Join my campaign and make it your campaign. You all asked for my story and now you take it. Email me about the press kit.
Buy a copy of my first book, A woman once a girl –breaking silence
I am glad to inform you that after successful launch of my first book in London on 8 March 2012, the feedback has been overwhelming. Thank you for your support always. I am glad to inform you that my book is already searchable in Barnes & Noble, Amazon and Google. Getting a copy online is only £1.50. I really want to passionately share the story of girls I support and by buying this book you have supported me and girls to lead a global movement to change status for girls. To be honest, the loss of girls lives in Africa is what worries me most and I witnessed it with my eyes and the only way I can help is keep reminding the world to come help girls. Please follow these links for the book and after reading just be kind to post your review and donate direct to GCNW.
My social enterprise empowers women and girls-business as we do charity work
If you want me to speak at your event or just come coach or train you on empowerment, leadership and confidence building or how to set up women and girls organisations or anything just visit my website. My hope is that each time I speak or mentor or train women and girls, donations will also go to our Girls Empowerment Fund. Please visit my enterprise www.muzvarebettymakoniei.co.uk Yes I really support women and girls to be at their best and so call me for speaking or training and I will be sure to be there to do the best for you. I believe in Give and Take approach to development work.
Our new office now in London
GCNW has relocated to London. I am happy we have joined a newly established arts centre in London. Our new address is as follows:33 Wadeson Street, London E2 9DR, United Kingdom
Thanks so much for staying in touch
Many great and positive things keep happening in my journey to set up a global network of girls’ networks in Africa. The support base is growing and each and every individual who comes to be part of our work gives something I cherish forever. In life you must come to a stage where after this hard work you think about the best that you can do and then do it. This is despite everyday there are challenges. I am an optimist who thinks everything that I am passionate about works –it can take longer but at the end of it something works. And so I keep going.
Stay well always and keep achieving.