Issue #4
Oct. 08
Welcome to the Global Sojourns Giving Circle Update!


Dear Global Sojourns Giving Circle Members and Donors,

Each autumn, I reminisce about being a student and starting the new school year; the excitement of meeting my teacher, wearing new outfits, opening brand new books, gazing at the decorated classroom walls and being ready to learn. This is "a given" for most children in America. Because of our Giving Circle, many children, especially girls, can now attend school. Their experiences will be different from yours and mine; there may be 50 or more students in the class, the new outfit will be one standard uniform to wear throughout the year, the books will be sparse and well used, the class walls devoid of posters or even paint, but the children will be just as eager to learn as we ever were!  And probably more so! They know that an education is their opportunity for a better life. Thanks to you, we are helping make that possible.

Linda Dee
GSGC Coordinator
Giving Circle Trip in the Works

Preliminary plans are underway for the next GSGC trip.  The June 2009 trip will include Livingstone, Zambia, Capetown, South Africa and a "bit of the bush." This will be a great opportunity for those who wish to return to Africa or for first-timers and those who want to make meaningful connections in their travels.

Click to see the 2008 trip summaries and photos and stay tuned for more details.
Upcoming Calls/Conferences

Thursday, October 23, 6pm Eastern

  A general update/ overview for new members led by the vetting commitee. Call: (269) 320-8100 and use access code:603003#.

Upcoming Conferences:
October 12, 2008,  2nd Annual Global Sojourns Giving Circle Conference, Portland, OR.

co2offsetOctober 24, 2008, Giving at the Grassroots, 2nd Annual Giving Circles Networking Event. Hosted by the Giving Circles Network, Washington, DC. Click for more information.

The 2009 schedule for conference calls: February, May, August, October.

The 2009 schedule for newsletters: January, April, July, October.

Please share ideas for articles and speakers for our newsletter and conference calls. We want to hear from you!

How am I Helping?

A brief overview of the struggles faced by the people of Livingstone and throughout Africa

co2offsetIn the Livingstone area, many people have been hit hard by HIV/AIDS. This has left many children orphaned and/or economically vulnerable. Older siblings, aunties and even grannies have been taking in the children. Traditionally in these cultures, it is the adult children who take care of their older relatives but due to the heavy toll from HIV/AIDS, the opposite has happened. This has been a tremendous strain on these caretakers, especially the elderly who had not expected to work at this age and to the young siblings who are trying to figure out how to survive themselves.

The children are in a precarious situation when their parents are ill and pass away. The caretakers are struggling to feed these children, let alone send them to school. In Livingstone, like most parts of Africa, the caretakers/parents are required to pay for school fees, uniforms and supplies. Many of the caretakers are struggling to be able to do this and the children are at risk of not going to school and ending up on the streets.

Organizations like Ray of Hope and Tco2offsetusa Munyandi have staff/volunteers who regularly visit the community, keeping a close eye on who is really struggling economically (and in other ways).  One of the programs that both of these organizations developed was to provide micro-loans to the caretakers of these children. Loans are given to select caretakers to help them earn a living and support these children. They receive training that helps them learn business skills and they are able to open savings accounts through these organizations and are taught about money management.

By supporting these organizations, we are sustaining communities and families, ensuring children are able to receive an education and transform their future.
Vetting Committee

Our Vetting Committee, comprised of Robin Mason, and Priscilla and Peter Macy are carefully reviewing the second year's round of applications, as well as the year-end reports from the two organizations we funded this past year. A third organization, in Capetown, has  requested funds and research is now being done to learn more about its programs. GSGC members will be able to vote on which organizations to fund and the amounts to provide.

Spreading the Word

Recent Events in California and Colorado  co2offset
GSGC participant Sarah Williams hosted a South African wine tasting at her home in Danville, CA in July that was attended by GSGC founder Priscilla Macy, GSGC participant Angie Inchauspe and Clarence Foundation Executive Director Marc Manashil. In total, around 35 people attended the well received event that featured a video presentation about the GSGC's May trip to Africa along with a slideshow about going on safari. The group als
o had fun tasting a few delicious South African wines. Over $1,500 was raised to support the Giving Circle's efforts.

ollowing Sarah's lead, GSGC Denver members Amy Wood and Linda Dee hosted a similar wine tasting event in September when Priscilla was in town for a conference. Priscilla showed the wonderful, informative video explaining the Giving Circle, that was developed by GSGC member Heidi Bixby. All of the 30 people in attendance, including donor Denny Gray, were extremely interested in our Circle and asked plenty of questions. Donations from the event are still arriving at the Clarence Foundation's office.

If you are interested in hosting a GSGC wine tasting event, we have developed a "template" that will help make the event easy to organize. This is a wonderful way to have a get together with friends and educate them about Giving Circles in general, and ours in particular. Please contact Linda Dee at 303-973-2928 or for more information.
Doll Update

In our previous newsletter, we introduced Rag Dolls 2 Love in the hopes we could continue to send these cuddly dolls to children in need in Livingstone. The picture at left was sent from Tusa Munyandi of 5 year old Namukolo Mumbela who greatly enjoys playing with her new doll.

After putting out a call to all sewers to help make the next round of these gender/ethnic neutral dolls, we found two enthusiastic volunteers. Lynn Findlay and Megan Woodard of SW Washington are sewing away as we speak, happy to lend their skills in creating a rare and needed comfort for children in Livingstone.

Meanwhile, the Auburn Sewing Circle is also busy at work, having already made fifteen dolls to be sent. If you are interested in participating, this is an simple way to make a difference for a child living under difficult circumstances. 

Interested? Learn more about Rag Dolls 2 Love and Contact Paige Hasson 503-246-9691,

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GSGC Mission
The Global Sojourns Giving Circle helps individuals pool their time, talent and financial resources to improve the lives of children and conserve wildlife in sub-Saharan Africa.  Members make a direct, positive impact while learning about issues in the region, connecting personally with the projects, and forming community with other members.
Members and Donors Welcome!
  • All donations are tax deductible
  • 100% of your donation goes to supporting projects
  • Donations of $365 to $2,000 + vote on projects to be funded, travel opportunities with the GSGC, take part in educational calls, receive updates
  • Donations of $35-$364: take part in educational calls, receive updates
  • Make checks payable to: The Clarence Foundation, 678 13th Street Ste. 201 Oakland, CA 94612.   Be sure to designate it for the Global Sojourns Giving Circle.

Book & Movie Corner

How to Change the World
By David Bornstein

"For anyone seeking to expand their sense of possibility, to pursue a challenging career path, or to discover a vibrant and colorful landscape of activity that remains hidden from view, this book will be both an inspiring read and an invaluable handbook. It will change the way you see the world."

Contact Linda Dee:
(303) 973-2928

co2offset A special thank you to Heidi Bixby for recently producing a video for the Giving Circle and for the use of her photographs in the newsletter.

And thank you to Alexandra Hasson, who volunteers her time and expertise to design our newsletter.