As a small organisation the Ruach Foundation is dependent on donations to be fully functional, and we need to be creative in finding donors. We are fortunate that Vivir Juntos provides us with a solid base because of their commitment to supporting Ruach for a certain number of years.
But as the Ruach Fundación we also need to take our own responsibility by generating more income every next year with the aim to reach financial independence. Our dream is therefore to start an optician shop as soon as possible, i.e. a shop that in due course will be able to generate profits to maintain the business and generate income for the social programmes of the Ruach Foundation. We worked hard this year to get closer to reaching this target. Every year it is a challenge to raise enough money to supplement the grant from Vivr Juntos which is needed to keep our social programmes going, i.e. the community home, the activities centre and our office. In this blog we give you an idea of Ruach’s independent fund-raising efforts.
Miraculously, GlobalGiving came our way. GlobalGiving is an international not-for-profit organisation which currently supports about 5,000 charitable organisations from all over the world, and provides a platform for its members to publicize their work. The Ruach Foundation has been a member of GlobalGiving for about three years now, and through our publicity through GlobalGiving we have annually received about $4,000 for our work in Juigalpa. It is an excellent return for the work we put in to maintain our status within GlobalGiving, to send regular updates about our work to our donors, and to participate in some of the campaigns which GlobalGiving runs every year. With the help of a friend (Eric Jager, who lives in the UK) and my daughter Daniella in Ecuador we participated in September 2020 in GlobalGiving’s Little by Little campaign, having given it more thought than ever before and trying to be as professional as we could as non-professionals! We hoped to raise a considerable amount towards the starting capital needed for the optical services business.
The result of the campaign week was good: 42 different donors donated $ 4.427,57, for us a record of funds raised in any one week! We are grateful, not only for the money raised, but also for the way some donors have helped us to bring our work to the attention of a wider public, as for example the ecumenical community ‘de Regenboog’ in Leiden, or Miek, who raised a lot of money by selling commodities and by asking for donations from the public in her stall in a flee market in her home town of Oegstgeest with eye-catching information about our work in Nicaragua.
Books4life, Groningen, Netherlands
Books4Life works for people, near and far, who are less advantaged, and they have a nice way of achieving this: they collect books, sell them, and share the profits. A female friend of mine had asked me to send in a proposal for Books4Life’s attention. Books4Life clients were then asked to vote for one of 4 projects of their choice either in store or via Facebook. We asked our network of people in the Netherlands, England, Ecuador and Nicaragua for positive feedback about our work, and hooray! We got the largest number of votes, more than 60!
Foundations, collections, individual donations, campaigns
Every now and then we receive a gift from a foundation in the Netherlands or via relatives abroad. Sometimes a church community (Netherlands, England) allocate the proceeds of a collection for our work. Also in 2020 the Pompekliniek in Zeeland, NL supported our work through one of its residents. Eric has just completed his 4th run for Ruach. Sometimes I receive a little extra for our work in Juigalpa via my personal account. This year we also received a legacy from Arie after he passed away. So many blessings, it makes you silent…
And in Nicaragua?
We have some godparents who donate a regular amount every month. We sell our piñatas, produced by participants of the activities centre. Occasionally we set up a fund-raising activity, e.g. a raffle. It does not raise large amounts, but all small amounts add up, and it helps to widen our circle of involved active people. The congregation of one of the board members of the Ruach Fundación supported us with a nice amount.
With all these gifts together we were able to just balance the books in 2020!
The power of unity So much can be achieved when many people contribute something with ideas, set up a fund-raising campaign, draw my attention to potential opportunities etc. Our battle cry is: Together we make a difference. This year we have shown the truth of this. Does that not give you energy and a sense of gratitude? It does that for me. Your support has encouraged and inspired us! Many many thanks!