8 Dec 2011

Around the World with BIC

When The British International College held their World Fair on 19th November it was a rich celebration of global cultures. The multi-national students, parents and teachers showcased their countries offering everything from Irish dancing to Bedouin tents, samosas to sushi, biltong to snoep, pumpkin pie to blinis. Proceeds are to go to Mediterranea and the stall holders were kind enough to donate unsold food. This was enthusiastically received by Can Gaza, a shelter in Mallorca, with the comment, "We´ll celebrate everyone´s birthday tonight." Thank you BIC.

Contributed by Med member LD.

7 Dec 2011

Annual Review of our Achievements in Ethiopia (ABUGIDA)

 Abugida, our "Independent Republic".

As you are aware, for the last five years we have been solely and fully responsible for the management and maintenance of the Abugida infant school, a project which has had many ups and downs along the way and involves the following: salaries for 33 staff at the present time, 3 daily meals for 235 children (4 meals in the case of the babies), maintenance, repair and extension work (just making a new septic tank cost us 5500 euros), learning materials (we have financed all kinds of learning resources for our children), uniforms and other expenses such as transport, electricity, water, telephone, etc. 

We are also continuing with the classes for adults and we have taken under our wing various mothers who are victims of domestic violence or have ended up on the streets with their children. They stay in our “refuge room” on a temporary basis and if there is work in Abugida they stay on to work or if this isn’t possible we give them a loan so that they can become independent. 

In theory Abugida school belongs to the Government but they don’t pay anything at all. They have left it in our hands, which is positive because this allows us to have direct control of its management and we can send our volunteers to give training to the staff and whose help is invaluable.

We wish to emphasize that we are “solely and fully” responsible because from time to time we have seen photos of Abugida children on other websites, FB or blogs which have undoubtedly been used without our permission in the majority of cases and this can also give rise to misunderstandings of supposed collaborations, which in reality don’t exist.

Abugida develops and grows. It’s a well established project, a "centre of excellence" and "our" children are adorable. They are growing up strong and healthy. The ones with HIV mix with the others, they don’t have health problems and they are not discriminated against.

Most of the children have a sad history behind their smiles so Abugida is an important place for them, where they can feel secure and happy for many hours of the day.
In the nursery we have a special treasure, little Dagem – who suffers severe cerebral palsy – and who thanks to Nuriya his exclusive carer and the education he recently received from Laura (a psychometrist and great professional), he is making steady progress and is a very happy child.

What can we say about the nursery school: it is unique place in the whole country. None of it would have been possible (from a material point of view, yes, but not from the point of view of attention and stimulation) without Alejandra, that wonderful teacher who tackled a big challenge at the time.  Alejandra has been travelling to Abugida during her holidays for the last two years. We know that her first year was difficult but we also know that when she returned the second year she was pleasantly surprised at how well the nursery school was running. This is all down to you, Alejandra, many thanks.  You have created something quite unique.

Thanks also to all the other volunteers who have been out to help, there have been lots of you this year and you have all made your mark.  

Currently Abugida costs us more than 5000 euros a month in fixed expenses, the instability of the Ethiopian currency and continued inflation mean that the budget can increase within short periods of time. Many thanks to all of our members and supporters who make all this possible.

6 Dec 2011

Recent Press Coverage for Mediterranea

December issue of ABC Mallorca runs a six page article on Mediterranea's Dignipacs,our support of Zaqueo and the homeless of Palma.

El Mundo covered Mediterranea's efforts in bringing over and caring for Martha and her brother Mesfin and the excellent work of Dr Sanpera who has been her primary medical guardian at Son Espases and has operated on her five times.

5 Dec 2011

Med Bringing about Change in Sebeta

Hello Followers of Mediterranea

Here are some more photos of the recent visit of Dr Panades and Cati Ramis to Sebeta and their ophthalmic review of the children.

Since their return to Mallorca there have been a number of conversations as to how to organise the operations of those children who need them.

As for those who can see, with or without help, they are going to start to learn to read and write.  Their new classroom is prepared: desks, new chairs and the study materials that they need.  Mediterranea has organised and covered the costs of this classroom and it’s materials.

Two psychomotor specialists are in Sebeta at the moment. They will be joined by two more in the next few days.  They want to get the gym up and running.  They are planning to make, with the help of some of the elder boys and girls, some foam mobiles that they can then use to assist with the psychomotor stimulation of the children.  Through this process they hope to find a couple of boys or girls who will be able to fulfil the role of sports monitors in the future.

We excitedly await photos of all these activities.

4 Dec 2011

Rock & Soul Concert on behalf of Mediterranea

A few weeks ago Nelly Berens, editor of New Mallorca Magazine interviewed Mediterranea volunteer Britta Krebs, who handles our German press relations.  This was followed by a visit to Zaqueo to see how Mediterranea supports efforts to feed, clothe and provide dignipacs for the homeless. The New Mallorca Magazine then carried an article on Mediterranea's work.

Nelly was so impressed that she has now organised a benefit concert on behalf of Mediterranea.  As can be seen from the poster this will take place starting 20.00 hrs on Sat 17 Dec at the warehouse of KGBikes in Poligono Son Oms and features Bands 'The Lost Rock' & 'Las Cono Records'.