12 YEARS OF COMMITMENT - FONDATION CUOMO

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Alfredo and Elena’s World


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This book is dedicated to the memory of Alfredo Cuomo who continues to inspire our commitment


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ALFREDO CUOMO - AN APPRECIATION INTRODUCTION EDUCATION

Sandy Lieberson

INDIA, TAMIL NADU Kovalam Sendivakkam K.G. Kandigai Chennai Cuomo Foundation Scholarships MALI Bamako CAMBODIA Phnom Penh AFGHANISTAN Koha Tulkha HAITI Les Mornes BRAZIL Rio de Janeiro

SOCIAL WELFARE 57 60 62

INDIA Mercy Home K.G. Kandigai BURKINA FASO Gorom-Gorom ITALY Rimini

ARTS & CULTURE 64 66 68 70 72 74

ITALY Rome SENEGAL

FURTHER ACTIONS IN EDUCATION, HEALTH & SOCIAL WELFARE MEMORIAL ADDRESS Maria Elena Cuomo THE FUTURE Maria Elena Cuomo CREDITS & ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS 7


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“Ser culto para ser libre” José Martí 8


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Alfredo Cuomo in Cuba, 1998

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Alfredo Cuomo An Appreciation It is 10 February 2012 and I am looking at photos and videos of Alfredo Cuomo who is in the midst of a sea of laughing young Indian children at the Cathedral Free Primary school in Chennai. He has never looked happier or more content in the fifty years I have known him than he does among these children in India. Alfredo is not a visiting European in a distant land; he seems to be part of this group of children in an environment that he and Elena Cuomo have created. Yes, it is my dear friend Alfredo that I thought I knew so well but he has become another person. Not somebody who changed his profession or moved to another home, but someone who has changed his way of being and thinking. I marvel at what he has achieved and it makes me examine myself and think about what motivates and drives us in our lives. For Alfredo has left behind an enormously successful career in the world of cinema and television to devote himself to something far more challenging and rewarding. He found a way to use his success and fortune to help children who desperately needed him. Neither of them knew it when Alfredo and Elena made that momentous trip to explore India in 1999. What was the road that brought Alfredo and Elena to Chennai and the creation of the Cuomo Foundation?

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Who is Alfredo Cuomo ? I first met Alfredo in Rome, 1961. I had just arrived from Hollywood to begin working as an agent representing many of those great filmmakers and actors working in Italy. The Italian cinema was exploding with some of the greatest films and filmmakers in the history of cinema: Fellini, De Sica, Risi, Sordi, Mastroianni, Gassman, Vitti, Loren, Visconti, Pasolini, Antonioni, Goddard, Leoni and Ava Gardner... and in the middle of this renaissance of post war Italian films and La Dolce Vita was Alfredo Cuomo. Alfredo, born and educated in Rome, chose to study law but was destined never to practice it. After law school he applied and was offered the highly sought after Fulbright Scholarship to study at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wisconsin, U.S.A. Wisconsin, the ‘land of lakes’ and subzero winters, was Alfredo’s home and place of study for the next year. Alfredo loved the freedom of the U.S.A. and at the end of the year armed with flawless English he returned to Rome and was offered a position at the U.S. Embassy working in the press department, where he made contact with the world of journalism. But it only took a few months before the legendary film producer, Dino De Laurentiis, hired Alfredo to put his journalistic contacts and knowledge of English to work in the Italian film industry. Alfredo’s intelligence and charm was going to be put to good use in the marketing and selling of these great new Italian films to an international audience. The first film Alfredo worked on was The Best Of Enemies (I Due Nemici) starring Alberto Sordi and David Niven, a hilarious comedy about the clash of British and Italian cultures in WW2. It was produced by Dino De Laurentiis and directed by the successful British filmmaker, Guy Hamilton. The Best Of Enemies became one of the first post war international successes and turned out to be an auspicious debut for Alfredo Cuomo as whiz kid promoter of Italian cinema. Alfredo, a handsome, dashing, energetic and brilliant young Italian whose destiny was to become part of the international film industry. This was also the rise of the paparazzi phenomena… and Alfredo knew the paparazzi and they knew him. Alfredo’s growing knowledge of photographers and photography helped him discover the way of using both the paparazzi and the new gossip magazines such as Gente, Oggi, Chi, and Grazia to promote films, almost like a scene out of Fellini’s 8½. In those early 60’s in Rome we were out most nights, the Via Veneto for watching celebrities, Piazza del Popolo for talking, arguing, drinking coffee, sambuca and grappa until the early hours of the morning. Hanging out with Clint Eastwood, Jack Palance, Anita Ekberg, Alain Delon, Robert Aldrich… Alfredo had great energy and a real curiosity about the world of politics. It was the time of the ascendency of the Italian Communist Party, MSI fascists, and of course the onslaught of American Culture. Alfredo had an all-consuming passion for cinema, the arts and all things new. From marketing and publicizing films it was not a big leap into the producing of movies. Alfredo’s first film as a producer was Tepepa starring Orson Wells and Tomas Milian. From there he established a partnership with Italian filmmaker Dario Argento, American director George Romero and writer Stephen King. His output as a producer was successful and prolific; seven films that were international successes. Alfredo’s final film as producer was award-winning Dogville by Lars Von Trier. It starred Nicole Kidman, Ben Gazarra, and Lauren Bacall. While still producing, Alfredo found a way to fulfil the insatiable appetite of Italian television by securing the Italian rights to over two hundred of some of the most outstanding American movies including the most successful film in the history of cinema, Titanic, by director James Cameron.

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It was during this time that Alfredo began exploring and traveling the world: Yemen, Syria, Egypt, India, Cuba, Africa, Asia, and Latin America. At the same time developing his own skills as a photographer. It began as a hobby and developed into one of his passions. He began to build a world-class collection of art, sculpture, tapestries and masks. It reflected his eclectic and instinctive ability to identify objects that first and foremost gave him pleasure but would become a valuable international art collection. As Alfredo and Elena travelled during the 80’s and 90’s their eyes were opened to the beauties of these remote and exotic countries and their unique cultures. It was out of these travels that Alfredo’s first photographic book was born: I Love My India published in 2001. During this time Alfredo came to the realization that he wanted to share his success and wealth in some positive way. He felt that through education he might be able to make a contribution to society and children. He made several approaches to the Vatican but was unable to find a way to involve them. Alfredo did not want to just donate money to a charity but to create an initiative whereby he could deliver a project that would have education at its heart and benefit the children of the countries he had visited. It was in 1999 that Alfredo and Elena travelled to India, a country they both loved. They arrived in Chennai, formerly known as Madras, located on the south coast near the Bay of Bengal in the state of Tamil Nadu. By coincidence Chennai is home to the thriving Tamil film industry made famous through the films of the great Satyajit Ray. Escaping the crowded and noisy town, they strolled along the beach past fishing villages. Alfredo, carrying three cameras, was followed by a growing group of children. Dressed in school uniform, the children led Elena and Alfredo to an area where, standing side by side was a Hindu Temple and a pink coloured Christian Church. Entering the church they discovered it was full of children sitting on the floor for their lessons. It was at this moment that the idea of fulfilling Alfredo’s desire to promote education for children would become a reality here in India. The priest told them that the children needed a dormitory as they also lived at the school, sleeping on the floor.

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Alfredo contacted Father Thomas who was in charge of the school and began discussions about the possibility of building a dormitory where the students could live. Moving to a hotel Alfredo and Elena began developing their idea for separate dormitories for girls and boys within the compound of the church. Alfredo felt that putting some of the older members of the church into the dormitories would benefit the children in their development and studies. Under Alfredo’s supervision and with his sketches, plans for the buildings were drawn up. Alfredo and Elena stayed on to oversee the building and to make sure it fulfilled their expectations. In addition Alfredo created a programme of scholarships benefiting both the girls and boys for future university studies. Addressing the inequality of young girls position in Indian society was an important issue for them. Several years later many of the scholarship students went on to make their own contribution to helping the young. One in particular, Chitra who started at school when she was ten, became an established engineer in a very successful computer software company and used her own money to set up a dental camp for young people. Following completion of the dormitories, Alfredo and Elena proposed the creation of a separate school that would accommodate over one thousand Hindu and Christian students studying and living together. Alfredo would supervise the design of the building and with the condition that the Church could not sell the land for the next thirty years. Alfredo was never without an idea for a new and exciting Cuomo Foundation project. During his travels Alfredo became interested in Buddhism and spent years studying their tradition and philosophy. It inspired him to publish Land Of Gold, which gave him the opportunity to use his photography to express his feelings for the Buddhists. And this brings me back to the photos of Alfredo and Elena at the school in Chennai. Modesty, sensitivity, a huge capacity for love and generosity. A man of culture with a respect for the traditional but fascination with the new. Someone who was able to inspire young people and set them on the road to a better life. These are some of the qualities that I recognize in Alfredo. His passing in 2009 was a tragedy for Elena, his family and friends and the thousands of children he helped. But Alfredo wasn’t one for self-pity. When he learned he was ill he talked and planned with Elena for her succession in running the Foundation after his death. Those of us who knew Alfredo are better people for his friendship and in Elena and The Cuomo Foundation his spirit and beliefs continue to better the lives of future generations.

Sandy Lieberson Awarded Honorary C.B.E. Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire - London 2012

Sandy and Alfredo in Rome, 1970’s

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INTRODUCTION Since its establishment in 2001, the Cuomo Foundation has built and created educational compounds for over 6,000 Indian children in the Tamil Nadu region of southern India. In addition the Alfredo Cuomo scholarship, founded in 2004, has sponsored over 300 students to complete higher educational studies at colleges and universities. This has enabled these students to follow careers in medicine, nursing, dentistry, teaching, engineering, catering and management. Many of the successful scholarship students have returned to the Cuomo schools to pass on their skills and knowledge. The care of the elderly and their continued inclusion in Indian society is also a priority for the Foundation. Today and in the future, India remains at the core of the Foundation’s work. Worldwide the Foundation supports projects and involvement in education, health and social welfare actions. Frequently in collaboration with other non-governmental organisation, these include a young adult learning centre in Mali, a social welfare initiative in Burkina-Faso, a girls school in Afghanistan and in Cambodia, a vocational skills training college in Brazil, educational rehabilition at a paediatric heart centre in Cambodia, responding to the earthquake in Haiti and many varied actions throughout Europe. In addition, Art and Classical Piano Recital Competitions continue to be supported. In these pages you will see what the first 12 years of the Cuomo Foundation has achieved and how it continues to grow from its original path... MONACO ITALY LEBANON AFGHANISTAN

FRANCE

HAITI INDIA SENEGAL

MALI BURKINA FASO

BRAZIL

Current & Past Actions Worldwide

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CAMBODIA


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EDUCATION

EDUCATION The Cuomo Foundation works in various areas throughout the Tamil Nadu region in southern India. Nurseries, primary and secondary schools, technical learning centres and separate boarding houses for pupils and the elderly have all been built. These continue to be maintained and funded by the Cuomo Foundation. A scholarship programme for further educational opportunities has been in existence since 2004, over 300 students have benefited. Although Tamil is the official language taught in Government schools, the Cuomo Foundation funds and supports English teaching in schools, where possible. Future aims of the Foundation are to collaborate with the local communities for self-sufficiency and sustainability in the areas of education, gender equality, nutrition, sanitation and environmental issues.

ghanistan

Kashmir Tibet

Pakistan Nepal

India

70

0

Maldives

80

0

Sri Lanka

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EDUCATION

The never ending smile... 23


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EDUCATION

INDIA KOVALAM The first and largest series of educational projects undertaken by the Cuomo Foundation began in the hamlet fishing village Covelong, known locally as Kovalam. There were two existing schools, a primary school named John D'Monte, founded in the 1890's, with 800 primary-junior school age children and a secondary school named St Joseph's, founded in 1987, with 1,750 senior school age children. Both schools were extremely basic, the structures lacked any protection from the elements, there was no teaching equipment or furniture and no sanitation facilities. In addition, totally inadequate sleeping quarters existed for over 200 pupils unable to return to their families during term times. In early 2002 the first purpose-

built dormitories were completed, these provided appropriate accommodation for the secondary school girls. In addition a ‘Home for Aged Men’ was opened which enabled the elders of the community to have an active role in the daily running of the compound. In late 2002 the ‘Boys Hostel’, a dormitory for secondary school boys was completed. In early 2004 the St Joseph 's Higher Secondary School opened, replacing the old school, with 4 substantial buildings including a technical learning centre, a well-equipped science laboratory and library. In 2007, the Mount Carmel Nursery and Primary School opened, a purpose-built two-storey building with 12 separate fully equipped classrooms and an adjoining Nursery

Statistics analysis of students in Kovalam 2004 - 2012 Total number of students reaching 12th Grade ( 17-18 yrs ) = 1,916

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Successful Graduates who continued to Higher Education/ Employment Non-Graduates/Unemployed

accommodating the infants. Purpose-built sport playing fields, recreational areas and infant playgrounds have also been included in the educational compound. In 2010 additional school buildings were completed and in 2012 the Elena Cuomo Computer Centre opened. Although administered by the Catholic Church, the schools provide a multifaith education both in Tamil and English to the Hindus, Muslims and Christian pupils who attend. Today, approximately 3,000 pupils ( age range 3-18 yrs ) are educated and cared for annually.


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EDUCATION

St Joseph’s Higher Secondary School

St Joseph’s Pupils

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EDUCATION

Original Boys outdoor sleeping area

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Completed Boys Dormitories


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EDUCATION

Completed Girls Dormitories

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EDUCATION

INDIA SENDIVAKKAM

Following the success of the schools compound in Kovalam, the Cuomo Foundation researched further areas in the Tamil Nadu region that could benefit and grow from their involvement. Sendivakkam was a rural and impoverished village in a remote area of the region. A small junior school named R.C Primary School existed but there were no secondary schools and as transport was extremely limited, there were few opportunities to accessing any form of higher education in neighbouring areas. The Cuomo Foundation was able to propose and collaborate with the local authorities and communities to establish an educational compound fit for purpose. In early 2005 the R.C Higher Secondary School was opened, in 2013 the school was renamed in memoriam as the Alfredo

Cuomo R.C. Higher Secondary School. The purpose-built two-storey building comprises 15 fully equipped classrooms, science laboratories and a separate library building. In addition, large dedicated sports playing fields and outside recreational areas were designed. In 2006, separate dormitories named ‘Home for Boys and Aged Men’ and ‘Home for Girls and Aged Women’ were completed. These centres allow the elders of the community to participate in the activities of the schools and for pupils to board during term times. Also in 2006 a multipurpose Hall was completed, this centre is used for various school ceremonies and activities. It also functions throughout the year as a community centre for the inhabitants of Sendivakkam.

Today over 750 pupils ( age range 11-18 yrs ) are educated and cared for annually.

Statistics analysis of students in Sendivakkam 2005 - 2012 Total number of students reaching 12th Grade ( 17-18 yrs ) = 471

Successful Graduates who continued to Higher Education/ Employment Non-Graduates/Unemployed

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EDUCATION

Alfredo Cuomo R.C. Higher Secondary School

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EDUCATION

Alfredo Cuomo with local dignitaries Alfredo Cuomo R.C. Higher Secondary School compound

Alfredo Cuomo R.C. Higher 10th year students

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Playing Fields

EDUCATION

Alfredo Cuomo R.C. Higher 9th year students

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“A teacher who establishes rapport with the taught,


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becomes one with them, learns more from them than he teaches them�

EDUCATION

Mahatma Gandhi

Alfredo Cuomo R.C. Higher 10th year students

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EDUCATION

INDIA K.G. KANDIGAI St Charles Higher pupils

K.G. Kandigai is a large rural village, 90km inland from Chennai. Well run schools serving the area already existed with St Charles Higher Secondary School and Parampet Nursery and Primary School. However, the remoteness of their position with no easy school transport available had made regular pupil attendance impossible for the majority of families. In response to this need, the Cuomo Foundation built and established fully equipped dormitories for the pupils, enabling the students to reside, rest, study and attend the local schools during term times. In 2004, the ‘Home for Boys’ was opened providing accommodation for boys aged 11-18 yrs.

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In 2010, the ‘Home for Girls’ opened allowing girls aged 11-18 yrs to fully attend and participate in school and complete their education. Also in 2010 the Cuomo Foundation renovated a pre-existing building and equipped it with computers. The E.C.C.C. ( Elena Cuomo Computer Centre ) has become a financially selfsufficient learning endeavour, enabling pupils and their local community to acquire basic computer skills.

Successful Graduates who continued to Higher Education/ Employment Non-Graduates/Unemployed

Statistics analysis of students in K.G. Kandigai 2005 - 2012 Total number of students reaching 12th Grade (17-18 yrs) = 827


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EDUCATION

Inauguration of Boys Dormitories

Elena Cuomo Computer Centre

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EDUCATION

Chennai Chennai, formerly known as Madras was devastated by the Tsunami in 2004. The coastal region, inhabited by small fishing hamlets and slums, suffered huge loss of life and infrastructure. The Cuomo Foundation responded by building a new purpose-built school: The Cathedral Free Primary School. Financial assistance was also given to St Antony’s Primary School.

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EDUCATION

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Opening day celebration at Cathedral Free Primary School

INDIA CHENNAI 38


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Cathedral Free Primary School compound

Cathedral Free Primary School

Cathedral Free playground

A purpose-built two-storey school complex, including fully equipped playgrounds, was built and opened in 2006 in Santhome, Chennai . The Cathedral Free Primary School provides a free full-time education for approx. 600 boys and girls ( age range 5-10 yrs ). An additional open-air teaching area was built and completed in 2009. This provides an alternative and cooler study area for the children’s classes when required.

Alfredo Cuomo with infant class

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EDUCATION

St Antony’s Primary School Founded in 1928 and situated in the area of Numgambakkam in Chennai, the schools focus is ‘to impart quality education to the lowest strata of society’. In 2009, the Cuomo Foundation financed the complete renovation of the existing school building and has continued to annually fund the purchase of uniforms for the boys and girls ( age range 5-10 yrs ) and school equipment.

St Antony’s School building during renovations

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EDUCATION

Pupils of St Antony’s in Uniform

Original school entrance

St Antony’s also hosts a sewing training centre that allows women to find a job.

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Inaugural Scholarship Programme, 2004 EDUCATION

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EDUCATION

EDUCATION

CUOMO FOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIPS - Kovalam - Sendivakkam - K.G. Kandigai The scholarship programme was founded by Alfredo Cuomo in 2004 in Kovalam to enable young gifted students to fulfil their academic potential by continuing their studies at colleges and universities. Alfredo Cuomo, had been a recipient of the international Fulbright Scholarship programme, which had allowed him as a young student to develop his own academic potential. The scholarship provides each student with financial funding to help support their chosen field of study. In addition, workshops, seminars and field trips are organised for their benefit. The scholarship is awarded annually at the start of the academic year to a number of boys and girls in their final senior year. Selection is decided by the Foundation, working in collaboration with the school masters and the parish priests and is based on the academic potential, merit and economic situation of the individual student. The recipients selected are mainly Hindus, with Muslims ( approx. 12% ) and Catholics ( approx. 8% ) as the remainder of scholarship students. These percentages vary from year to year. The scholarship was extended to be available to the senior students in Sendivakkam and K.G. Kandigai in 2007. Today, over 300 scholarship students have benefited through sponsorship of educational opportunities and a large percentage are now employed in varied professional fields such as medicine, nursing, dentistry, teaching, engineering, catering and management.

Females Males

Kovalam 2004 - 2013 81 56

Sendivakkam 2007 - 2013 26 34

K.G. Kandigai 2007 - 2013 15 43

Cuomo Foundation scholarship programme by gender

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EDUCATION

Scholarship Programme, 2011

Sendivakkam, 2005

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Maria Elena Cuomo with graduate, Sendivakkam


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EDUCATION

Sendivakkam, 2008

Kovalam, 2010

K.G. Kandigai, 2009

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SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME IN 2012

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EDUCATION

“The future depends on what we do in the present” Mahatma Gandhi

The work of the Cuomo Foundation began in India, inspired by the children and young adults that Alfredo and Elena encountered. Encouraged by what they witnessed could be achieved, they travelled to other regions of the world and began to support additional projects that moved and affected them…

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EDUCATION

EDUCATION

MALI BAMAKO Le Centre d’Etude et de Culture pour Jeunes Monseigneur Luc Sangare is a non-profit organisation founded in 2004 and administered by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Bamako. Situated in the outskirts of Bamako, the capital of Mali, the centre functions as an after-school and evening study institute for teenagers and young adults providing evening classes, lectures, courses, study areas and an extensive Library. The students are charged a minimal fee to attend, which supports the running costs. In 2008 the Cuomo Foundation, following an introduction with the Director of the Centre, financed the purchase of a professional photo-copier for the Centre. In 2010, the Foundation funded the building of a two-storey extension to the Centre, providing additional classrooms. Over 600 students are able to make use of these facilities. A further classroom extension was built and completed in late 2013. The Foundation continues its involvement with support and practical advice on the ultimate goal of the Centre for financial self-sufficiency by 2016.

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The Luc SangarĂŠ students EDUCATION

A N

Morocco

Islas Canarias (Sp.)

0

30

Lybia

Algeria Western Sahara 0

20

Mauritania e e

Mali

Chad

Gambia Guinea-B. Guinea Sierra L.

Cuomo Extension, 2010

Niger

Senegal

Liberia

Burkina F. 0

10 Ghana Benin Ivory Togo Coast

G ulf of G ui nea

Nigeria C. African R Cameroon

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EDUCATION

EDUCATION

CAMBODIA PHNOM PENH UNITÉ ALFREDO & ELENA CUOMO

HAPPY CHANDARA SCHOOL

The Children’s Heart Pavillion, a dedicated paediatric cardiology centre in Phnom Penh, was founded by ‘La Chaîne de l’Espoir’ in 2001. In 2012, the Cuomo Foundation agreed to fund annually the educational programme that had been created to rehabilitate children after their surgery and prepare them to return to school. Tutors, uniforms, school equipment packs, shoes and financial support to the families are sponsored by the Foundation.

The Happy Chandara School was founded in 2006 on the outskirts of Phnom Penh by ‘Toutes à l’école’, an organisation committed to enabling young girls from deprived and troubled backgrounds to attend school. In 2012, the Cuomo Foundation funded the construction of a two-storey centre adjacent to the school. Its purpose is to operate as a female practical vocational skills training college for young teenagers to professionally equip them to become chefs, hairdressers, beauty technicians and tourist guides. The centre opened in late 2013. The newly completed training centre

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EDUCATION

EDUCATION

AFGHANISTAN KOHA TULKHA

Fully equiped classroom

Renovated School Building

In 2010, the Cuomo Foundation started supporting the rehabilitation of a school in the Panshjir Region, Afghanistan. This renovation is part of the “Afghanistan - Destination Ecole” programme created and managed by La Chaîne de l’Espoir, which promotes the return of girls to education and schools. Due to the deterioration and unsafe conditions of the Koha Tulkha school, parents were afraid to send their children there. The positive impact of the renovation was an increase by 37% of pupils for the new academic year in March 2011 (110 in total). The Cuomo Foundation has also funded school equipment and hygiene kits providing pupils with pens, workbooks, uniforms, toothbrushes, soaps and shampoos.

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EDUCATION

EDUCATION

HAITI MORNE ABRICOT REGION Roche Pierre pupils in newly equipped classroom

The 2010 earthquake in Haiti was catastrophic for the people, deeply affecting the children and destroying the country’s infra-structure. In 2011 the Cuomo Foundation provided practical support by funding through La Chaîne de l’Espoir the renovation, improvement and re-equipping of 10 schools in the Morne Abricot region - Dejeume, Roche Pierre, Balisiers, Ranou, Saut-Balisiers, Chrétien, Charles, Tofié, Bois Panyol and Deck. The programme is called ‘Haiti-Destination Ecole’.

Roche Pierre Classroom before renovation

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Bahamas Cuba

Haiti

Dom. Rep.

Jamaica Caribbean Sea

Roche Pierre School after renovation

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EDUCATION

The Bois Panyol School before renovation

The Bois Panyol School during renovation

The Deck School before renovation

The Deck School during renovation

The Chretien School before renovation

The Chretien School during renovation

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EDUCATION

BRAZIL RIO DE JANEIRO El Sal.

g

I C 0

90

10

Venezuela

Costa Panama Rica Colombia

Suriname Guyana 60 0

0

70

0

80 Ecuador

50

0

40

0

O C E A N 30 0

Arch. Colon (Ec.)

N

Guyane Franรงaise

Brazil 10

Peru

0

Bolivia 20

0

Paraguay

Trop 30

Chile

0

ic of

Cap ricor n

Uruguay

Argentina

At the beginning of 2011, in collaboration with Casa do Menor and Monaco Red Cross International Actions, the Presenรงa de Sabores project was created in Miguel Couto, a favela of Rio de Janeiro. An existing property has been fully adapted and equipped to run as a hotel and catering training school. This educational skills development project gives former street kids a qualified vocation enabling these young adults to gain employment in the catering industry as kitchen assistants, waiters and barmen. Partnerships have been formed with local professionals, restaurants and hotels to encourage placements and long term employment.

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New fully equipped teaching kitchens


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EDUCATION

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SOCIAL WELFARE

Maria Elena Cuomo with a resident of Mercy Home

The Cuomo Foundation has always been concerned for the care of the elderly poor, disadvantaged, sick and the diversely-abled in society. It continues to fund and support various social and medical welfare actions in India, Burkina Faso, Italy, France and Monaco.

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SOCIAL WELFARE

Residents

Mercy Home for the Elderly, Chennai - India The Mercy Home was established in 1952 and is situated in Kilpauk Garden, in the centre of Chennai. It is run and administered by the Sisters of Salesian Missionaries of Mary Immaculate. A charitable institution, it provides shelter, food and clothing to over 200 aged and destitute men and women. In 2004, the Cuomo Foundation funded the purchase of a transport bus for the residents, in 2008 the kitchens were renovated and in 2011 an electrical generator was provided to maintain continuity of care and comfort even during the regular power cuts.

Male Dormitories Transport Bus

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SOCIAL WELFARE

St Charles Higher Secondary School, K.G. Kandigai - India A pilot programme focusing on improving nutrition and self-sufficiency has been set up involving the pupils, teachers and local environmental specialists. In 2011, the Foundation equipped a new school kitchen and provided an industrial steam cooker. A kitchen garden has been established producing various vegetables, fruits and herbs. This now provides much needed additional daily nutritional food for the pupils. Further self-sustainable projects and local development initiatives are to be researched, funded and implemented by the Foundation in the future.

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SOCIAL WELFARE

“A growing garden is food for the mind as well as the body” Anonymous

Pupils of St Charles Higher Secondary School at lunch

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SOCIAL WELFARE

BURKINA FASO GOROM-GOROM In 2008, Alfredo and Elena Cuomo travelled extensively across the African continent, visiting and exploring Burkina Faso, Mali and Senegal. In Burkina Faso, they were introduced to the Zeine Groupement, a local farmers’ cooperative in Gorom-Gorom, a small impoverished village in the north of Burkina Faso. The Cuomos wanted to support them practically and in 2008, the Cuomo Foundation purchased various livestock for the benefit of the co-operative. In 2011, working again with the Zeine Groupement, the Cuomo Foundation funded the purchase of additional livestock and financed the construction of a Water Well. This publichealth and development initiative project has enabled the local farmers, their livestock and the local community to have continuous access to clean water. The Zeine Groupement now runs a successful and income generating Dairy.

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Alfredo Cuomo and board members discussing the project


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SOCIAL WELFARE

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SOCIAL WELFARE

ITALY RIMINI

Health, Social & Educational Welfare Since 2001, the Cuomo Foundation has been the main sponsor supporting the Hobart Method, a form of dance therapy for diversely-abled children and adults. They are based at the Movimento Centrale in Rimini, Italy. Various courses and intense workshops are available for children and young adults. The centre also runs qualified training courses for dance students and teachers in the practice of the Hobart Method.

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SOCIAL WELFARE

Gillian Hobart, Founder of the Hobart Method

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ARTS & CULTURE

ITALY ROME

Since 2008, the Cuomo Foundation has been one of the main financial sponsors of the annual Roma International Piano Competition held in Rome by the Fryderyk Chopin Association. Gifted young musicians from around the world are invited to compete over several weeks for the prestigious financial prizes and sponsorship awards. The Fryderyk Chopin Association is a member of the Alink-Argerich Foundation, an independent worldwide information and service centre for classical musicians and competitions.

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ARTS & CULTURE

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ARTS & CULTURE SPONSORSHIP

SENEGAL

SENE’GALA IN MONACO

First Prize

Alfredo Cuomo was an enthusiastic supporter of the Arts. He always encouraged young inspiring artists in the many countries he visited. Alfredo and Elena Cuomo especially appreciated African Art and decided to find a way to bring some of the new exciting artists, they had encountered in Senegal, to a wider audience. In 2008, they created and sponsored a painting competition to be held in Monaco. They selected a jury of African Art specialists in Senegal who viewed over 60 different artist’s work. Ten Senegalese artists were selected to bring their work to Monaco for the final stage of the competition. In November 2008, at the Hotel de Paris in Monaco, a display was mounted of their paintings. The highlight of the exhibition was a gala dinner auction which benefited the artists. Financial prizes sponsored by the Credit Foncier de Monaco Bank, the Monaco Red Cross and the Cuomo Foundation, were also awarded to the winners.

Second Prize

Many of the featured artists have since gained international recognition for their work, with exhibitions being held worldwide.

Third Prize

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Alfredo and Elena Cuomo with sponsors and dignitaries


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ARTS & CULTURE

Highlights from the Exhibition

Immigration Clandestine, Alboury FALL Maternité 2, Fatou Marie-Françoise AW

Danse 2, Cheikh Tidiane KEITA La Lecture, Mamadou BA

L’univers des Talibés, Mahmoud Baba LY

Kaleidoscope de la Vie, Coly FAYE Edited versions of original artwork

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FURTHER ACTIONS IN EDUCATION, HEALTH & SOCIAL WELFARE The Cuomo Foundation, established in Monaco in 2001,supports numerous aid programmes and initiatives with governmental and non-governmental organisations also based in Monaco. FIELD OF EDUCATION, ENVIRONMENT & HEALTH Working with MONACO RED CROSS the Cuomo Foundation has sponsored various projects in Monaco, Brazil and Mali for a number of years. Monaco Red Cross is a humanitarian organisation committed to supporting, protecting and alleviating illness, the elderly and destitute, medical, surgical and social needs. Working with FONDATION PRINCE ALBERT II and the IPCC on educational and environmental issues, the Foundation formed a partnership in 2013 to support, through scholarships, a research student programme called ‘Initiative for Change’. The Fondation Prince Albert II was established to help protect the environment and to encourage sustainable development. It focuses on 3 main issues-climate change, bio-diversity and water. The IPCC, the intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, is a scientific body under the auspices of the UN. It reviews and assesses the most recent scientific, technical and socio-economic information produced worldwide relevant to the understanding of climate change. In the area of health, the Foundation purchased in 2008 the ‘Tissue-Tek Xpress 120’ for the PRINCESS GRACE HOSPITAL OF MONACO. This highly sophisticated medical equipment enables the Pathology department to improve and increase the speed of tissue processing results. The Princess Grace is the main public hospital for Monaco and the Maritime Alps region. The Foundation supported MISSION ENFANCE in Lebanon in 2012 by renovating and equipping the Child Healthcare Centre in Roueisset, Beirut. In 2013 further financing was agreed to support additional medical staff required due to the increase of Syrian refugees. Maria Elena Cuomo, president of the Cuomo Foundation, was awarded Honorary Member of Mission Enfance in 2013 ‘in recognition of her generous and faithful commitment to the children in distress around the world’. The Foundation supports NO FINISH LINE the major fundraising event for CHILDREN & FUTURE, an association whose aims are to provide assistance and support for underpriviliged and sick children worlwide. Since 2009 the Foundation has been the main financial sponsor for the week long ‘walk or run’ circuit open to all ages, which raises over 250,000€ per annum. The Foundation in collaboration with Monaco Red Cross and the Niarchos Foundation, has funded the development and construction of ‘La Maison d’Amelie’ for MONACO DISEASE POWER. The complex, opened in 2013, is a fully equipped residential respite home, accessible for the disabled. This accommodates 20 persons and is situated in Annot, France. Monaco Disease Power is an association providing support to disabled children, young adults, their carers and relatives through the provision of educational and recreational activities.

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FIELD OF SOCIAL WELFARE The Foundation continues to support individual social welfare schemes initiated by the Principality of Monaco Town Hall, MAIRIE de MONACO. In 2010 the Foundation purchased a custom-equipped refrigerated van, able to distribute prepared meals daily to over 180 elderly and disabled Monaco residents. Funding was also granted to the JATALV training scheme, a programme to instruct social workers in palliative care. In 2011 a local nursery day care centre ‘A Riturnella’ was renovated and re-equipped. In 2013, after a successful pilot, the 'Espace Snoezelen' therapy rooms were opened within the Town Hall. A mixed method of sensory stimulation of the 5 senses to alleviate stress and encourage communication in persons with disabilities, it uses light, music, vibrations, tactile and olfactory sensations. The entrepreneurship in Senegal competition held by the ASSOCIATION DES FEMMES CHEFS D’ENTERPRISE DE MONACO was financially sponsored by the Foundation in 2013. It is an international association whose aim is to investigate and defend the rights and general interests of female entrepreneurs in business worldwide. The Foundation supported various activities and programmes in 2011 at the CENTRE DE LA JEUNESSE PRINCESSE STEPHANIE. A socio-cultural association for ages 8-21yrs Monegasques, students, workers and residents of Monaco. The Foundation has supported development programmes for ECOUTE CANCER RECONFORT since 2011. An association created to provide cancer patients with aid and comfort, both financially and spiritually. In 2013 the Foundation was the main financial sponsor of the Ste Dévote Challenge held at the Louis II Stadium, a charitable sports participation for able and disabled young, held by the FEDERATION MONEGASQUE DE RUGBY, the governing body for the promotion of rugby in Monaco. In 2011 the 'Best Social and Business Plan in South Africa' competition held by the JEUNE CHAMBRE ECONOMIQUE DE MONACO was supported by the Foundation who sponsored the financial prizes. In 2013, the Foundation financially sponsored the prizes awarded in the ‘European Social and Business Plan’ competition. The JCI is an international organisation founded to promote and support young adults in their personal development, social entrepreneurship and leadership skills.

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Memorial Address given at the naming inauguration for the Alfredo Cuomo R.C. Higher Secondary School Your Grace, Ladies and Gentlemen, Coming back to India, especially to Sendivakkam, is for me full of memories, emotions, feelings you cannot imagine. It took me a long time before I could even figure coming back here. First of all, I want to thank all of you , for being gathered here today. Today it is four years that Alfredo Cuomo, my late husband, passed away, I was destroyed and my universe collapsed. Among the few, the very few things that kept me alive, there was the Foundation and its’ meanings. Alfredo and I, started this adventure together in Kovalam strolling on the beach more than twelve years ago. With the passage of time we saw our dreams come true. From a small Portuguese church with a tiny school, we grew and grew every year. You all know as much as I do, how strong was Alfredo’s spirit and how proud he was of all these achievements, your achievements. The Foundation has survived him as I did and we, the Foundation staff, did it not only for the sake of his memory but because we, as him, strongly believe in what we do here; India is and will remain the core of the Cuomo Foundation. Sendivakkam School is today renamed Alfredo Cuomo R.C. High Secondary School. I feel proud for him and as time has gone by, I do not feel sad but happy to be with you, to celebrate this event. You gave him, you gave me a wonderful present, thank you. Life goes on and as such the Foundation is committed to support education and will do it. As I said previously, India is the core of our Foundation. However times are changing, as fast as life goes by. The Foundation like any individual has to evolve in order to survive. From one man’s will, it has, it had to become an organisation. As such the Foundation needs to know what is done, what are the success rates, what are the weak points in order to improve its actions, to reinforce some activities and to redirect others. The world around us is getting more and more challenging every day. Education is the first step to remain a free human being. However India is a country of huge contrast, where extreme poverty is next to extreme wealth. You must aim to be neither poor nor rich, but proud, educated, honest men and women. Internet and Social Media may lead one to believe that all can become engineers, architects, bankers, medical doctors, but Indian society needs everybody, like in every other society. You will need carpenters, builders, plumbers. You will need agricultural engineers, water specialists to overcome your own challenges. Your education can be supported by the Foundation, but the Foundation cannot help you to get your right place in your own Society. You will need to do the appropriate studies to be not only educated, but to choose the appropriate job fitting your own abilities and be able to have a family and run a happy life.

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All these issues were not as acute when we started twelve years ago. They are not tomorrow’s dilemma, they are today’s critical matters. We as the Foundation are prepared to help you with these new challenges, but we can only do it with you. The future is bright, but full of pending choices. The Cuomo Foundation is excited and stimulated by all these challenges. During these last four years, although I did not come here, I worked with you, for you and I continue to do so with the same spirit. I need to thank especially, Peter Hungerbulher and Erik Reksten for their dedication to India. I also want to thank the staff of the Foundation based in Monaco, and especially Anne France Ballaro. But as the Foundation needed to be structured, we had to reinforce our governance and you met some months ago our new General Manager Mr. Francisco Antonio Diaz Lison. All these people are in place to help you, to serve the Foundation and allow concepts and ideas to become real. We will prolong for as long as we can, if not forever, the life of this twinkling star we saw with Alfredo twelve years ago on a beach ! I cannot conclude my speech without very special thoughts and warm thanks to Mr Charli Kulandi for his efficient, permanent presence, and thoughtful actions throughout all these years. Thank you Charli. I want to thank all of you, the pupils, the students, our pupils, our students, all of you coming in as children, growing, to become teenagers and adults. You are the children of the Foundation. We are proud of you and we thank you for working hard. You deserve to be helped. Thank You !

Transcript of Speech given by Maria Elena Cuomo, President of the Cuomo Foundation, on July 18th 2013, Sendivakkam - Tamil Nadu

Maria Elena Cuomo in Sendivakkam, 2013

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THE FUTURE

The Future The challenges that face the Cuomo Foundation in the future are great... How does one help to provide and organise learning and life skills in a fast changing world? We will continue to support and explore educational and social opportunities to create advantages for the “underserved”, particularly the young and less-abled in society. Looking ahead, a scientific committee will be established and research grants will be introduced to support and improve the Foundation’s understanding and to accommodate the challenges of environmental issues. The Foundation aims to create links with other like-minded foundations and to form partnerships to collectively have a broader impact. Education, healthcare, social welfare and the arts remain our core issues. By collaborating with already established organisations in these various fields we are able to achieve a broad spectrum of support. Our Scholarships provide practical encouragement in education, music, arts and social entrepreneurships. How we prepare and tackle the future in these volatile times is crucial and lies at the heart of the Cuomo Foundation’s beliefs to make a meaningful contribution for those most in need of assistance. We are prepared to face these challenges and we will succeed. The Spirit of Alfredo Cuomo will continue to guide and support us in accomplishing our mission!

Maria Elena Cuomo President of the Cuomo Foundation Monaco, 2013

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THE FUTURE

Maria Elena Cuomo in Monaco, 2013

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Acknowledgements The President Maria Elena Cuomo, the Board Members Peter Hungerbuhler, Bettina Ragazzoni-Janin, Alessandra Morbelli, Anne-Marie Fissore, the General Manager Francisco Antonio Diaz Lison and the staff of the Cuomo Foundation wish to thank all those whose valued contribution made this book possible.

Photos Credits

Texts by

Page 1 Page 2/3 Page 5 Page 6 Page 8/9 Page 10/12 Page 14 Page 16/17 Page 18 Page 19/21 Page 22/35 Page 36 Page 38/49 Page 50

Sarah Lieberson

Page 51 Page 52/53 Page 54/60 Page 61 Page 62/63 Page 64/65 Page 66/71 Page 73 Page 75 Page 76/78

© Alfredo Cuomo © Alfredo Cuomo & Maria Elena Cuomo © Maria Elena Cuomo © Alfredo Cuomo © Maria Elena Cuomo © Cuomo Foundation © Maria Elena Cuomo © Alfredo Cuomo © Cuomo Foundation © Maria Elena Cuomo © Cuomo Foundation © 2009 AFP © Cuomo Foundation © ‘La Chaine de l’Espoir’ © ‘Toutes à l’ecole’ © Bernard Matussière © ‘La Chaine de l’Espoir’ © ‘La Chaine de l’Espoir’ © Cuomo Foundation © Alfredo Cuomo © Metodo Hobart © Allessandro Leone © Associazione Frederyk Chopin © Cuomo Foundation © JCI © Alfredo Cuomo © Cuomo Foundation

Design by The Cuomo Foundation Sarah Lieberson

Artwork by The Cuomo Foundation


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Alfredo and Elena in Barcelona, 2008


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Cuomo Foundation - 4, rue des OrchidĂŠes - 98000 MONACO www.fondationcuomo.mc


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