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THE MAGAZINE TO INSPIRE TAKING ACTION IN YOUR LIFE FOR SELF AND HERD BECAUSE

HERD MATTERS VOLUME 2 EDITION 001 | FEBRUARY 2014 | together our hands can help

Mel is in Uganda!

MATT BRICE

The

journey so far...

UPDATE INSIDE

MY HERD

COME TO

AFRICA!

MATTERS

or Celebrate Holi in Nepal

KATIE NOONAN SHARES WHY

Your say on

Children’s

Rights

Love Letters..

Hunter

Gathered.

10 year old sells veggies & gives profit to kids in Nepal

Nelson’s side dish of rabbits

How one young man is making ends meet

‘tis the season - share the love!

PLUS: A TASTE OF NEPAL > SPONSOR PROFILE > TRAFFICK REPORT > PROJECTS SNAPSHOT > FMN TEA > STARRY NIGHTS > & MORE...

FOLLOW THE JOURNEY WWW. CYCLEFORBRIGHTERFUTURES.COM

*NEW COLUMN*

Hannah says:


COVER IMAGE Super cyclist and philanthropist Matt Brice is on the road cycling 4,300km from Goa to Varanasi raising funds for the Brighter Futures Study Centre. We wish Matt all the very best for his incredible journey. To follow Matt’s journey go to the Cycle for Brighter Futures Facebook page. Donations can be made by searching Matthew Brice on the Everyday Hero website www.everydayhero.com.au

hello herd

herd n. { } A group of like-minded people coming together for a specific purpose.

HERD MATTERS Volume 2 Edition 001

First published in 2014 by the Australian Association of Forget Me Not Children’s Home PO Box 1223 Hervey Bay Queensland Australia 4655

ONLINE

www.forgetmenot.org.au www.facebook.com/forgetmenotchildrenshome

EMAIL

herdmatters@forgetmenot.org.au

CONTRIBUTORS Matt Brice Eva Capozzola Hunter Dalzell Mel Faulkner Hannah James Hargreaves Hanne Kovarik Tessa Leon Mel Manley Andrea Nave Katie Noonan Emmalene Travers Kate van Doore Nikki Williams Therese Wilson Kim Yabsley

Happy 2014 and Happy Chinese New Year and Happy Valentine’s Day! This year looks to be shaping up a winner. We have 3 fantastic Visitor Trips in the pipelines. If you can get organised and join us in Nepal in March you’re in for the colourful honour of celebrating Holi with the girls (p14). If, like Austin Powers, Adventure is your middle name then pencil in September for an unforgettable and wildly adventurous trip to cover yourself head to toe in the red dirt of Uganda (p24). Alternatively there will be another fab trip to Nepal in October, incorporating a breathtaking trek perfect for beginners (p28). In this edition we introduce three new regular features. Australian songstress and all-round-awesome-woman-of-the-world Katie Noonan shares with us why ‘My Herd Matters’ (p21) and quirky wordsmith Hannah from our families project in Uganda gives us the first installment of ‘Hannah says:’ (p11). The other being ‘Your say on’ which features the profound and insightful views of someof the children in our care living in Nepal and Uganda (p14). Cycling superstar Matt Brice is still on the road and shares his journey so far (p3) and Nanna Project Coordinator Mel Faulkner has hit the ground running, checking in from Uganda (p8). We are really pleased to have the ongoing support of James Hargreaves (p12), Anna Faoagali (p20), Russell Geldard (p27) and Fundraiserinc. com (p20). We are especially proud of our youngest most enterprising fundraiser Hunter Dalzell (p7). We are also really proud of the great work Nelson has been doing to care for himself and his brothers (p18). And as always Kate very eloquently keeps us all on track with her Traffick Report (p22). With V Day just around the corner, take some time to write a cheeky love letter (p26) and plan, record and celebrate your next 89 unforgettable days (p29). Please share Herd Matters with people you care about. Until May,

emmalenetravers@forgetmenot.org.au


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Projects Snapshot Andrea Nave

CONTENTS

The journey so far... Matt Brice Hunter Gathered. Mel Manley & Hunter Dalzell Hit the ground running Mel Faulkner Hannah says: New column by Hannah Child Sponsor Profile James Hargreaves Your say on Children’s Rights Children in Nepal & Uganda Nelson’s side dish of rabbits Mel Faulkner Anna’s helping every way she can Kim Yabsley My Herd Matters Katie Noonan

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Traffick Report Kate van Doore Come to Africa! Sneak peek Love Letters Emmalene Travers My Next 89 Unforgettable Days Plan Record Celebrate


PROJECTSSNAPSHOT by Andrea Nave, Projects Manager

As we strive to understand the complexities that effect our work in supporting children’s rights, we are both elated and challenged. Victories are measured through children’s reports cards; stories of improved health; strengthened familial bonds; and progress with government and authorities.

UGANDA In December and early January team Forget Me Not brought all the children under our care together to celebrate Christmas and the new year. With financial support from our generous child sponsors we were able to offer the children this wonderful opportunity. The children were reunited from their various boarding schools and celebrated the end of the year. Their spirits were high and they happily shared their reflections of the year that was. Each child received a gift from their sponsor from far way lands and have written a letter in response. These letters will return to FMN HQ in mid February when the amazing Mel Faulkner returns safely to our shores. In the coming months we will be looking closely at our yearly budget. Our aim is to deliver more for less as we work to improve these young and precious lives. We are also working towards supporting our Child Headed Households Project where with your help we can deliver safety warmth and protection to young families keeping them together and securing their land rights and future.

NEPAL Our Country Director Eva Capozzola has returned to the US to continue her work with our implementing NGO partner THIS. The capacity and professional performance of Mr DB Lama and the THIS team have generated a confidence here at FMN HQ that is reassuring and strong. Our kids have never been in safer hands. We are reassured that the wheels set in motion in December 2012 of removing our precious girls from the former partner and placing them with THIS has been our best work yet! Facing the insurmountable task of tracing missing family at times has been like looking for a needle in a haystack. Slowly and steadily pieces of lost puzzle began to surface and children’s identities and backgrounds have been rebuilt. At last we have reconnection and family ties are building for 19 or our 20 girls. We will not rest until this number reaches 20! The magnitude of this achievement is life changing. We are overjoyed for these children that we have loved and supported for so long. Forget Me Not will be forever a force that fights for children’s rights.

INDIA Our local hero and cover boy, philanthropist Matthew Brice is peddling his way around India in support of the Brighter Futures Study Centre. His efforts are heroic and he is half way to achieving his goal. The Study Centre is up and running thanks to our original supporters of this compassionate project. Matt’s efforts will see the centre reach its requirements of delivering the school readiness program to some of India’s most vulnerable children. Delivering hope where previously there was nothing. To our child sponsors and donors who continue to choose FMN to deliver their funds we are more than grateful! It is through our child sponsorship program that we are able to deliver a better life to these precious children. We can’t do it alone. You can help a child now - Please, ask us how - enquiries@ forgetmenot.org.au or call Andrea to start the conversation about how you or your business can change a young life and or support a family into the beauty of self reliance. andreanave@forgetmenot.org.au + 61 412 749 114

A fact of which we are very proud.

Our child sponsorship programs in Nepal, Uganda and India currently provides for better lives for 96 children and their families – Forget Me Not style. 100% of child sponsorship funds reach its intended recipient. If you would like to support FMN’s work in either Nepal Uganda or India and would love to make a change to a child’s future through child sponsorship we would love to hear from you!

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enquiries@forgetmenot.org.au


The journey

so far... By Matt Brice

www.forgetmenot.org.au


As soon as I landed back in India I felt at home. I flew into Bangalore with my Mum who was joining me for a couple of weeks before I began my cycle journey. It was 12:00 midnight and after a very long trip we were both exhausted. Neither of us said much during the taxi ride into town. I was interested to know what Mum was thinking. I, on the other hand, was soaking up the familiar smells, sounds and the traffic on the road. I felt so happy to be home in India that I was almost moved to tears. Next stop after Bangalore was Delhi, to meet Diptesh from Lakshya Aakriti Foundation. I was so eager to put a face to the voice I had shared many excited phone calls about my journey and plans whilst in India. I left our meeting feeling even more inspired to begin my journey and determined to raise enough funds to bring the gift of education to the children of Kalyanpuri Slum.

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The next two weeks were spent traveling around Rajasthan with my Mum. I had traveled through Rajasthan in 2012 on my bicycle so it was familiar to me, but traveling on a cycle you must stick to a straight route so there were many places I couldn’t visit at that time. This trip was a special experience to share with my mother it was a joy for me to show her the country that is so dear to me and to see her falling for India as well. After a quick trip north to Varanasi, one of my favorite places on earth, to visit some dear friends and on to Bihar School of Yoga for the 50year golden jubilee celebrations, I was on a 24hr train to my friend’s parent’s place in Ahmedabad to collect my bicycle and begin my journey. In Ahmedabad I pulled my cycle out of storage, cleaned off 1.5 years of dust, changed the tyres and was on the train to Mumbai to have the


Love

when the goal is

any journey becomes

easy

Mata Amritanandamayi

Left to Right: Doing an interview for a local news program in Calicut; Brighter futures for children, my inspiration; Looking after my stomach with some nourishing kitchari; Made a nice friend on the road today Muni, shouted me an ice block; Avoiding potholes and cows and goats and trucks AND snakes! Background: The send off, with local rollerskating team; Amazing fresh produce. Photographs: Matt Brice

cycle serviced. A lovely man named Faisal did the service; he fixed the gears, changed the inner tubes and checked it all over as a gift. Now one last train to Goa and I was ready to hit the road! The launch of “Cycle for Brighter Futures” was held in a town called Madgoan in Goa. I had so much support on the day. Attending was the LAF team, a local group RB Production, the Sports Minister of Goa as well as two children’s cricket teams and the local roller skating group. I was waved off by the Minister for Sport with a yellow flag and cheered on by all attending. I have been on the road for about 2 months now at times it has been tough. Cycling in full sun, on dusty roads full of potholes (potholes are an understatement) battling with trucks for a little space. Especially during the first weeks, where I really noticed how unfit I was. I hadn’t done any cycling since my last journey in India 1.5 years back.

When the journey becomes tough I am often refreshed by a lovely smile, the smell of perfume from someone riding in a passing car, the beautiful scenery or I often think of this quote: “when the goal is love any journey becomes easy” (Mata Amritanandamayi). Then I think of the children’s faces and pedal on. On my second day I had a lucky escape from what could have been a nasty situation. I had cycled around 60km in the heat of the day. I was feeling tired and wasn’t really focused when I arrived in the town I was staying for the night. I had stopped in the middle of the road waiting for the traffic to clear so I could turn right and have lunch at a restaurant I spotted. I looked behind me and vaguely saw a bike coming towards me quickly but I had already started to turn. It all happened so fast. I knew I was going to be hit. My mind rushed. Then the bike hit me knocking me onto the road. My pannier bags came off onto the road too. People rushed from the restaurant to help me off

www.forgetmenot.org.au


Top to Bottom: After one of the toughest days on the road. Major head winds! Dusty dry landscape, desert like. I found a room at St Anthony’s Shrine in Uvari. This is the view from my room.

the road. I was so lucky to come away with only a bruise on my hip and no damage to my bike or equipment.

Daily practice.

I am most grateful for the wonderful friendships I have made along the journey. The people of India have the biggest hearts and they are not afraid to share them. I have become so close people in such a short time that it is often so sad to say goodbye when it is time to leave. Every day I get many beautiful text messages and occasional phone calls from these friends checking up on me, wishing me luck and a happy journey. For me this is the reason that I rarely get homesick or feel lonely traveling in India. Actually it’s quite the opposite, sometimes I am so happy to be in my own room alone, where I can have a little time to myself to read, relax and do a bit of yoga.

On the road. The journey.

Photographs: Matt Brice

My journey in India has been a rollercoaster of experiences and emotions. In spite of everything I ask myself the question… is it all worth it??? Hell yeah!! HM

S.COM E R U T U F R E T H CLEFORBRIG

WWW. CY 6 HERDMATTERS February 2014

Facebook: www.facebook.com/MattsCharityCycle Donate: www.give.everydayhero.com/au/matthew-brice www.forgetmenot.org.au


Hunter Gathered.

(a little bit goes a long way)

Ten year old Hunter Dalzell convinced the Calrossy Anglican School community that a little bit goes a long way to helping children, less fortunate than his class mates, living in Nepal. Mel Manley asked Hunter how he made it happen. At school you were asked to do a project. What did you have to do for your project?

Well, I had to make a slideshow and write information about it and it was either a belief or something you can help out with.

Where did you get the information and pictures?

From the web site. When my Nan went over there, there was a picture that I got of her at Nepal.

Hunter, what inspired you to choose Forget Me Not as your project charity?

I didn’t really know what to do until I found out about the project and I felt sad for the people who live over there that are poor so I decided to tell my class and then my teacher said why don’t we raise money for them. We eventually raised $122 and I got $50 out of it. So we raised a lot of money for them.

What did you learn about the children of Nepal and what did you tell your class about them?

Well, there’s 21 girls and a few housemates and a few people that work in Nepal. How it all started was that they all got trafficked. So very bad people have taken them away from their families and said we’ll give you a really good education and raise lots and lots of money for your families. So the parents said ok because they need lots of money. So they sent their kids away into different towns and haven’t seen them for ages and the kids haven’t been raising any money for their family and they’ve been trafficked. So, not very good things have happened. How would you feel if that happened to kids in Australia?

I would not be happy. It’s not a good thing to do. Because kids should be with their families so

that they can learn and have good education and learn how to earn money and have a good life. How did you raise the money Hunter?

Well, at our school we had a teacher and he owns the school veggie garden and we grow vegetables and sell them every Friday at Assembly and we usually get at least a hundred dollars for it and I got fifty for it and put it into Forget Me Not Children’s Home. Would you like to do anything to help out Forget Me Not into the future?

Well, I think I’m gonna keep raising money, in my spare time. I’m going to keep supporting them and keep raising as much money as I can. Would you like to visit Nepal yourself?

Yeah, one day when I’m a bit older.

HM

Send us your story: herdmatters@forgetmenot.org.au www.forgetmenot.org.au


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hit the ground running...

By Melissa Faulkner, Nanna Project Coordinator I arrived in Uganda late on Thursday the 5th of December after an unexpected delay in Dubai. After 40 plus hours of travel I was exhausted but pleased to be back in Uganda. The drive from the airport in Entebbe to Jinja, where I base myself to manage the Nanna Project, was harrowing dodging in and out of the after work traffic. After a night tossing and turning from jet lag I set off to visit our kids and their families in the immediate area. Arriving at each house I surprised the families of my return, which was greeted with shock and excitement as well as a few words of chastisement that they had not been able to prepare any food or tea for my visit. Since that second day in Uganda I have been incredibly busy, you could say that I literally hit the ground running.

8 HERDMATTERS February 2014 7

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Now I have been back in Uganda for just over seven weeks, I have visited our partners in the far west, we have celebrated Christmas and New Year, delivered sponsored teddy bears, thrown our annual Nanna Project Party, organised holiday tutoring and bedding packages, and for the most part prepared all twenty-seven kids to return to Primary, Secondary and Vocational studies. I can say with all assurance I am exhausted, but it is a good exhausted. I’ve been able to see and spend time with children and their Nanna’s whom I adore. I have noted the difference in the physical, emotional and academic development of the children. I have reaffirmed my understanding that what we are doing here is valuable and effective. I am so proud of the young adults, that these once were young children, are becoming. There is a notable and remarkable difference with our three brothers who live independently; they are well fed, safe and happy these days. The older brother Nelson is doing well and stepping into his role as father for his younger brothers. Nambi who has struggled academically in the past is confident of a good report from 2013 and transition into a new school in 2014. She has also shown interest and ability in helping out with project needs. Carlos and Prossy K came first place in their respective classes followed by Reagan in a close second place. In term three Waiswa M set his sights on a bag of sweets for first position in grade six and came out with extremely improved results. Nicholas had a hearing test and it was found that he might be a candidate for a hearing aid. Both Nicholas and Babra are excited about transitioning to a new school that focuses on teaching students with hearing impairments. We are particularly proud of Joseph who we feared would give up on his education last year due to teenage distractions. He turned this around in 2013 and considering his newfound and ongoing commitment to his education we are hopeful that his grades from Primary Seven will be cause for celebration and that he will continue to do well in his secondary studies. I am so thankful for all our sponsors and supporters who provide the funding for our kids to go to school with everything they need to be successful in their studies and support our work on the ground. We had an amazing response to request for new sponsors and the fire appeal for one of our families. It is your assistance that allows us to support our kids and their families and to act in times of unexpected hardships. Aside from the personal thrill of seeing the kids and acknowledging their triumphs and successes I have also had the opportunity to reunite with life long friends and enjoy the adventure and pace of being back in Uganda. Travelling by motorcycles, bargaining in the market, eating local food, practicing my language skills in banter with friends and strangers, volunteering and visiting other organisations and catching up on times apart. Now with most of the kids ready and returning to school the pace will slow down before I return to Australia in February. HM 10

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1. Sharifa and Susan chill out after lunch. It is heartwarming to see the kids get along so well and enjoying their day. 2. Our three secondary students Bwaita, Stella and Nambi undertake a computer tutoring course during the holidays. Their transport was covered with funds raised through the holiday tutoring fundraising and Hackers For Charity provided the training as part of their project in Jinja. 3. Tina carefully unwrapping her teddy bear. 4. Alajabu received his school pack and is off to primary seven. This is his final year in primary school. This boy has grown so much since the early days and is such a lovely young man today. He makes us extremely proud. Celebrating another year of sponsorship, learning, support and empowerment in Uganda. 5. Prossy inspects her gift with her hands as we explain it to her. Her sponsor often sends sensory gifts and requests that Prossy shares these with the other visually impaired children at her school. We will take this lovely christmas tree at the start of next term. 6. Saidi is pleased to receive the extra assistance to give him a better start in the new school year. 7. Everywhere I stopped when I first arrived, families gave gifts of food in thanks for the opportunities we are providing the kids. To refuse this gesture would be impolite. I enjoyed tastes of roasted maize and jackfruit. 8. I had a go at peeling the bananas apparently mine where not straight. 9. Zowena was our first Nanna and the inspiration for the Nanna Project. She works tirelessly to care for orphaned and abandoned children. Over the years we have built a very special bond. 10. Carlos is pretty impressed with his backpack. This year we scoured the markets buying second hand backpacks that are stronger than the new ones the kids have received in the past. 11. Carlos and Reagan’s grandfather. This man works tirelessly for the seven grandchildren in his care. 12. On Saturday 18th January 2014 we held the Annual Nanna Project Party. Bringing all the kids together from their various villages is a great way to celebrate, allow the kids to learn more about the project that supports them and mix with other kids who have similar stories to their own. Photographs: Mel Faulkner

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www.forgetmenot.org.au


Webale Nyo!

(Thanks so much)

Photos: Mel Faulkner

On January 22 one of our families lost everything in a house fire. The family of three are all fine, thankfully no one was inside the house when the fire started. Within 3 hours of putting the call out via Facebook we had the funds to assist Babra, Mary and their Nanna to get home as soon as possible. We are pleased to announce that the local chairman has mobilised a group of men from the village to rebuild the house. We look forward to returning to the village in a week to provide and fit the iron sheet roof, wooden door and household items. The girls and their Nanna are so thrilled with the support from FMN and their community during this difficult time.

To know your ruling passion, examine your castles in the air.

10 HERDMATTERS February 2014

Photo: Therese Wilson

Richard Whately


Hannah says:

Hannah is one of the older girls in the FMN families project. She is a kind and caring young woman and we are proud to support her in her secondary studies. Hannah expressed an interest in giving back to Forget Me Not and we encouraged her to write stories for HERD MATTERS. She has done us very proud and we hope that you enjoy reading this piece and those to come in the future. Well done Hannah.

www.forgetmenot.org.au


Happy-go-lucky, generous and kind-hearted, James Hargreaves believes you get out what you put in. He is a great role model for young people and an outstanding ambassador for the tireless and necessary work of Forget Me Not.

“A goal without a plan is just a dream” Antoine de Saint-Exupery (French Writer)

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BECOME A FRIEND OF FORGET ME NOT Forget Me Not works tirelessly to find and reconnect children with their families because we believe a home away from the family is a last resort. Where this is not possible, we focus on providing a child centred, family structure for each of the children in our care. We invest in brighter futures through healthcare, education, love and sincere dedication to children’s dreams. Our ever-growing support from corporate, community and individual sponsors is truly a gift of generosity and love. We are so glad that you have chosen to share our future.

www.forgetmenot.org.au


CHILD SPONSOR PROFILE

“I first heard about FMN when I was employed to set up the sound and lighting for the Gala Ball back in 2011 I believe. And after hearing about FMN’s work I was hooked. And wanted to help in any way possible. I didn’t think I could afford to sponsor a child. But after a few months I thought what the heck. It’s not a huge amount every month. Now I sponsor two children. Then from there I decided to volunteer my technological skills by making movies and presentations for various events throughout the year. In 2012 I decided to join a Sponsor Trip to Nepal. After spending a lot of time going through photos and film clips (especially those from 2006) to make FMN presentations it was pretty overwhelming to finally meet the girls and put names to faces. Their resilience is remarkable. Traveling to Nepal was a remarkable and exciting adventure. Something I would call a life-changing event. Actually seeing first hand the living conditions of others and seeing the hardships really put everything into perspective. It’s hard to turn a blind eye or be ignorant to the fact when you can actually hear, see, smell and feel the experiences of those in need. A lot of people questioned why I would choose to travel to Nepal for my first overseas trip. Why wouldn’t I go to Europe or somewhere more ‘tropical’? I didn’t really know how to explain it. If they were questioning my decision in the first place, then they wouldn’t really understand the reasoning anyway. Since then my desire to give back and help out wherever possible increased even more. There are a lot of unfortunate children in need. And a lot of people are either completely unaware of the severity or chose to ignore the issue. The children don’t choose to be in these situations. With out the funding of health, education and well being the vicious cycle will continue. These are the fundamentals that every human being deserves. Everyone involved with FMN share the passion of change and compassion.

Photographs: James Hargreaves

I can’t wait to go back to Nepal and look forward to travelling to Africa down the track. I treasure these experiences more so than a 5 star resort on the beach.” HM

YOUR TEAM FOR 2013/14 CONTACT enquiries@forgetmenot.org.au www.forgetmenot.org.au

PRESIDENT Craig Manley VP Pete Mackay SECRETARY Kate van Doore TREASURER Michelle Hay THINK TANK Christine Jones Wade James Trent Harvison Greg Biggs Emmalene Travers Andrea Nave PROJECTS MANAGER andreanave@forgetmenot.org.au +61 412 739 114 COUNTRY DIRECTOR, NEPAL evacapozzola@forgetmenot.org.au

PROGRAM OFFICER emmalenetravers@forgetmenot.org.au

NANNA PROJECT COORDINATOR melfaulkner@forgetmenot.org.au


Your say on Children’s

Rights

What better way to truly experience the positive impact Forget Me Not has in the lives of the children in our care then to get involved in the cause and visit the countries we are currently working in? Our Visitor Trips are designed to give those up for the challenge the opportunity to meet our collective children, sight-see, embrace different cultures and spend quality time being not doing! Although we are selective with who we take to visit our children and projects, we are very welcoming and love to meet new friends and develop great relations with like-minded beings. Prospective Visitors must have a significant connection with Forget Me Not and a clear understanding that as soon as you meet and spend time with the children – you become a part of their lives. Your commitment must be longer than a week or two! We encourage your ongoing involvement and contribution to the success of our projects and most importantly, the lives of each child we care for... Our 2-step process for ensuring that you are the right person is as follows: STEP ONE Make contact with us. Let us know who you are and why you want to join us on a Visitor Trip. Be bold. Be honest. Share why it is important to you. Share how you will achieve Step Two. Send an email to enquiries@forgetmenot.org.au

FORGET ME NOT POLICY ALL Visitor Trip participants must be accompanied by a Forget Me Not representative when visiting children in our care, and our projects. ALL Visitor Trip participants must attend Visitor Trip team briefings both prior to departure (phone/web/in person) and in country (in person). Outside of our Visitor Trips, we are unable to release the addresses of our projects. We trust you understand that we maintain this position strictly for the safety and protection of the precious children in our care.

Photograph: Eva Capozzola

STEP TWO Make a commitment to join our herd by doing any of the following: Be an official Friend of Forget Me Not; Fundraise at least $2000 to support the work of Forget Me Not; Donate at least $3000 towards a specific Forget Me Not project; Sponsor one or more of the delightful children in our care; Volunteer at any of our major fundraisers throughout the year.


WHAT ARE CHILDREN’S RIGHTS? The rights or facilities are called children’s right. Rashila, 12yrs

The rights are granted by the constitution to the children below 18 years is called children’s right. Children’s right include: right to food, right to education, right to shelter etc. The rights which are granted by the constitution for children are called children rights. It is very important for the children. They are many rights which are needed to the children such as: right to freedom, right to equality, right to religion etc. Sita, 15yrs

As being as human, children are important to our life. They should get freedom. We should not discriminate children. Sarita, 13yrs

Photograph: Eva Capozzola

Namrata, 15yrs

WHAT DO YOU THINK IS IMPORTANT FOR CHILDREN TO HAVE TO BE SAFE AND HAPPY? I think child right is important for children. To keep children safe, their elders should protect them. To keep them happy they should get the facilities and rights like right to shelter, right to clothing, right to food etc. Rashila, 12yrs

Reading, having something to do (being busy and important) and not being tortured. Nelson, 16yrs

Children are the future of a nation. They should be given proper food to eat, proper clothes to wear and quality education. They should be given happiness and lots of love. The heart of children is tender. They need security. They should be kept safe. Namrata, 15yrs

Sports but mostly soccer. Kigenyi, 14yrs

Children are the bud of today and flower of tomorrow. They are the future. It is very important for the children to have to be safe and happy. They should get love and care from their parents, they should get their right, and they should get support from all sides. Sita, 15yrs

School is what’s important. Elvis, 12yrs

To be safe we have to obey rules and stay with our parents and to be happy we have to get help and support from elders and younger people. Sarita, 13yrs

www.forgetmenot.org.au


WHAT DO YOU THINK IS IMPORTANT FOR CHILDREN TO HAVE TO BE SAFE AND HAPPY?

House or shelter, playing, food for cooking. Zaina, 13yrs

Music and a motorcar are all a kid needs. Waiswa, 15yrs 16 HERDMATTERS February 2014


Drinking tea, sweeping, fish for James (his sponsor) and a drum. Saidi, 15yrs

House or shelter but a nice one not just any one.

Photographs: Mel Faulkner

This one has steps. I think steps are important. Nangobi, 13yrs


Nelson was one of the featured boys in our story titled ‘The strength of brothers’. Nelson and his two brothers, Kigenyi and Elvis, lost their parents and through a series of events in 20122013 found themselves living together in a small hut made of sticks and mud. In mid 2013 we provided emergency assistance to this young family and once their immediate issues had been addressed Nelson was enrolled in a six month motor vehicle mechanics training course. His two younger brothers started boarding in a local primary school. These practical qualifications will provide Nelson with earning capacity towards supporting himself and his young brothers. Nelson finished this course in late 2013 with excellent feedback from the vocational centre staff. Today with the support of a sponsor we have enrolled Nelson into a mechanics traineeship in a local workshop. We hope to support Nelson for the next six to twelve months while he develops his skills working towards an independent future. Nelson was thrilled recently when he received additional overalls, clothing, work boots and a bicycle. The bicycle was purchased as a sustainable means of getting to the workshop each day. He has been undertaking English lessons twice a week to bridge the gap between his primary and vocational educations. We envision that this language skill will help him with his employability and future success. We also plan to provide him with a toolbox, which will allow him to continue on at the workshop while building his own client base. Nelson will also receive an allowance for food and other daily needs until he starts earning an income. To supplement his allowance and support general maintenance and repairs of his bicycle when needed we have set Nelson up with a rabbit business. As rabbits breed like, well, rabbits Nelson’s side business (or side dish as they call it here) is well on its way to profitability as one of the females gave birth recently to eight babies and the other female is pregnant and will give birth within the month. At just sixteen years of age, Nelson’s responsibilities far surpass those of boys in Australia of the same age. However, life in Uganda and the loss and hardships he has faced make for maturity far beyond his years. In every instance Nelson has risen to the challenge and responsibility of each opportunity. This young man is certainly intrinsically motivated and dedicated to his younger brothers. With his humble and hardworking nature we are confident that he will do well. We are looking forward to monitoring his progress and success both in the near and distant future. HM

18 HERDMATTERS February 2014

Nelson’s side dish of rabbits By Mel Faulkner


Houses OF

Hope

CAN YOU

RAISE ENOUGH FUNDS TO BUILD A FMN HOUSE? Set a goal for 2014 and together our hands can help FMN Child Headed Households Project 2014

enquiries@forgetmenot.org.au

Adopt or Sponsor... or Both!?

Life in countries like Uganda is very different to life in Australia. Children often make their own toys out of recycled items (cars out of plastic bottles) and things found in nature (banana fibre dolls). Just like here if a child has had the opportunity to own their own doll or teddy bear they cherish it.

Top to Bottom: Receiving his christmas gift of clothes; With one of the female rabbits who is now pregnant; Nelson built a rabbit hatch within days; Nelson receives a bicycle. Left: Nelson at the workshop - he doesn’t look a boy here. Photographs: Mel Faulkner

A women’s group in Jinja, Uganda have been busy knitting teddy bears for us. The women generate income from selling knitted goods which they use to support the needs of disabled children. You can adopt a bear in Australia ($20 + postage) OR sponsor a bear for a child in Uganda ($20).

You can purchase bears by emailing melfaulkner@forgetmenot.org.au


“You have to show children how to do things, take them with you when you go to dig, so they can learn life skills.” Nanna Joyce & Nanna Christine

Forget Me Now is holding a shopping fundraiser! The good fundraising folks at Fundraiserinc.com have added FMN to their list! Choosing a gift or looking for that special something for that special someone? Why not take a peek at our list of goodies available.

Nanna’s Wisdom Anna’s helping every way she can Anna Faoagali is an accredited Mediator, licensed workplace investigator and family dispute resolution practitioner. Anna works with corporations, government bodies, community services and families, to implement structures to manage problems between people. A highly qualified professional (holding a Bachelor of Law and Commerce and a Master of Laws), Anna chose to apply her legal foundations to a career facilitating conflict intervention, helping people communicate more effectively, for better outcomes. Respected and recommended by lawyers nationally and internationally, Anna uses her rare insight into the nature of human relationships and conflict to provide her clients with clear pathways to deal with relationship breakdowns, in addition to ensuring that they comply with their legal obligations in both the family and workplace contexts. Anna was delighted and inspired to discover that a former university colleague (Kate) had used her skills to develop FMN and was so moved by the intentions of and the positive contribution of Kate and everyone involved in Forget Me Not to protect young people at risk, she felt compelled to contribute. Anna now donates $150 to FMN for every speaking event she participates in and also donates $150 to FMN on behalf of every speaker at seminars she runs. Additionally, she is currently developing a program for young people at risk to participate in raising funds for FMN which will not only culminate in a life changing trip to Nepal for one child from each participating school, but the project is expected to provide participants with access to mentoring, physical, mental and emotional development, develop conflict and facilitation skills, team building skills, project management skills and open up new and exciting pathways for employment.

20 HERDMATTERS February 2014

There are electronics, gadgets and stuff to make you smell good and stuff for your house too! All shopping items generate an income for our projects so why not show your support and shop with Fundraiserinc.com.au


KATIE NOONAN

MY HERD MATTERS

My herd are my beautiful and amazing children Dexter(8) and Jonah(7) and my big gorgeous hairy hubby Zac. Our extended herd include Nanna and Pops and Uncle TY on my side and Grannie, Grandad, Aunty Kendall, Aunty Emily, Uncle Michael and cousins Cassidy, Ellen and Genevieve. My creative herd are my band mates in elixir, The Captains, The Gossamer String Quartet and the Aussie Jazz and classical music community. Tell us you favourite herd holiday destination? We have had a couple of amazing holidays in Fiji - it’s paradise and such beautiful, happy people. We now live in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland so honestly we live in paradise so we are slowly getting to know our ‘hood and the beautiful spots to visit around our area. Our other very special family space is North Stradbroke Island we got married there and we are renewing our vows on our 10 year anniversary there this year ;-) Favourite herd pizza toppings? I make a mean pizza! My boys call it “Mamma’s Mia’s Pizzeria!”..... usually involves sautéed zucchini, garlic and onion, capsicum, organic tomato paste, fresh local shaved parmesan and shredded tasty cheese. Perhaps with shaved ham for an extra hit. What childhood gift do you still own and secretly treasure? My Holly Hobby sleeping bag. Mum and Dad bought it for me for my very first school camp when I was 12 and she has followed me around the world, various share houses, various festivals and muddy tents and many many people have cuddled her! She is falling apart but I love her. Why does herd matter? It’s the space between us that matters. I need to feel connected to humans in order to stay happy - we are amazing things and people constantly inspire me. Favourite herd flick? Hmmmm that’s a hard one. I love Three Colours Blue. Juliette Binoche is incredibly beautiful in that movie. I think it explores grief in a moving and profound way and grief is something we all have to confront in this life many times. If you get the chance to see Katie live, take it! She’s spectacularly talented and we love her to bits. Katie will be touring Love-Song-Circus in Brisbane, Adelaide & Sydney. Photographs by Katie Noonan, Top to Bottom: Love letter from one of Katie’s herd after elixer gig at Noosa Jazz Festival: “End of year joy finding their gorgeous little stories... Wow, So blessed...”; “My gorgeous Mum and I after our Women In Voice performance! Thank you for the standing ovation Brisbane - amazing!”; “Daddy daughter date adventures at Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, QPAC. My date is so beautiful - best date!”; Katie & husband Zac: “Hubby love so blessed to have this man as my life partner... Beautiful father, beautiful lover and beautiful musician.”

Background Photo: Hanne Kovarik

www.forgetmenot.org.au


K C I F F A TR

T R O P RE

By Kate van Doore

Just call us children Have you ever noticed societies obsession with labelling people? Have you ever had a label attached to you that didn’t represent you? How did that make you feel?

As it turns out, the label of “orphan” is quite powerful. Once it was discovered that the children in our care were not “orphans’, there were some in Forget Me Not who feared that the sponsors and donors would not continue to support. This seemed an odd idea to me – I did not understand why people wouldn’t be overjoyed at finding that the sponsor child they had grown to know and love, had family in the world.

Imagine being called an “orphan” for 8 years when your family was alive and well.

The initial dream of Forget Me Not was to provide a loving home for orphans.

When we think of “orphans”, we generally think of children with deceased parents. However, the definition of orphan varies greatly across differing social contexts and legal systems. Where a child might be considered an orphan in some contexts due to abandonment or separation from their families, in other contexts (such as US immigration for the purposes of intercountry adoption), a child can also be considered an orphan if they have an unwed mother who has not remarried thus ‘legitimising’ the child. The definition of orphan is highly contextual.

That dream is over.

Whatever the context, as Judith Ennew, a well respected researcher, states, orphans are parentless children who are socially and materially dependent on the wider society for their safe passage through childhood (Abebe, 2009).

As it turns out, people see past labels to the truth.

It is this “safe passage through childhood” that Forget Me Not has always concerned with.

Imagine now that you are liberated from that label.

When asked what they prefer to be called, children have said, “Just call us children.” (Children on the Brink 2004)

However, instead of providing this safe passage to “orphans”, we are providing it to “children”. The children in our care are majoritively not “orphans”. They were children who were labelled as orphans and coerced into perpetuating a lie to maintain a funding relationship. There are those that continue to call Forget Me Not an “orphanage” and the children we house and protect, “orphans”. This is not the case. Forget Me Not is not an orphanage for orphans. We are a home housing and protecting children, and reunifying them with their families who they were wrongly taken, and kept, from.

22 HERDMATTERS February 2014

As we always say, when we know better, we do better. Our kids are not orphans, and they need to know their families. It is a testament to the wonderful supporters of Forget Me Not that we did not lose a single sponsor after they were told that the children were not actual orphans.

I started this article by asking you to imagine that you were labelled an orphan when you weren’t one.

That you are free to be yourself for the first time in 8 years. And that you are free to find and be reconnected with the family that you were not allowed to speak of. This is the new dream. This is Forget Me Not. Kate van Doore is the Secretary of the Management Committee of Forget Me Not and a Lecturer at Griffith Law School. Kate holds a Bachelor of Arts (Asian and International Studies)/Bachelor of Laws; Grad Dip Legal Practice; and a Master of Laws. She is currently pursuing a PhD on the intersections of child trafficking, child institutionalisation and the law.


SAVE THE DATE

Save the Date 28.06.14

Melissa & Grant have put their hands up for another fundraiser on Magnetic Island. If you need an excuse for an island getaway, keep October in the back of your mind. Dates and more info to come. Possible theme hint: _ _ _ _ _ _ is the word.

If you can dream it, you can do it. Walt Disney

Photo: Nikki Williams

www.forgetmenot.org.au


COME TO

AFRICA!

Uganda is a place full of adventure, beautiful scenery, and amazing smiles. For the first time, Nanna Project Coordinator Mel Faulkner will be leading a 10 day trip of a lifetime and chance for you to experience some of what Uganda has to offer. Dates are to be confirmed but at this stage it looks like 19-29 September. This incredible opportunity lets you experience the rich culture and check out some incredible sights. You will visit historical, cultural and fun sights in the cities as well as step out on safari in rural Uganda. Our specific itinerary is yet to be set but here are some activities likely to be included:

see

how FMN’s work in Uganda supports positive futures

feast

and celebrate with the kids & their Nanna’s & families

do

something crazy to get your heart racing & adrenalin pumping: white water rafting, jet boating, quad biking and/or bungy jumping

enjoy

a local food fiesta sampling local delicacies in a small village shack

soak up

all the colours & beauty of locally made crafts at markets

chill out

during a relaxing gondola ride at the source of the Nile where Ghandi rests & watch the sun set in peace

check out

beautiful landscapes and majestic creatures in the wilds of Uganda on Tent Safari or Gorilla Trek

sample

the hustle’n’bustle of the busy cities on a walking tour of Jinja & Kampala

learn

how the local delicacies are prepared, you may just go home and hug your oven

ARE YOU READY FOR ADVENTURE? enquiries@forgetmenot.org.au

24 HERDMATTERS February 2014


Learn the lingo da n a g u L TYPES OF TRANSPORT

BODA BODA is a motorcycle or a bicycle that operate like a two wheeled taxi. MATATU is a mini bus that is also referred to as a taxi. Matatu’s operate all over Uganda and East Africa. The idea is that you first find the one going to your destination then wait for it to fill up. It is important to always greet those in seats around you. Often the music is blaring and you are squished like sardines but it is the cheapest form of transport other than jumping in the back of a pick up truck. SPECIAL HIRE is a car that operates much like our taxi’s at home except that anyone with a car can operate this business.

USEFUL PHRASES

Sente meka? How much does it cost? Leka! Stop! Mpola mpola! Slowly slowly! Vuga bulungi. Drive well. Vuga mpola mpola. Drive slowly. Ntya. I’m scared.

Sagaala kugwa wansi!!!!! I don’t want to fall down. Wano. Here. Webale. Thank you. Tula. Sit. Tugende. Let us go. Ngenda mown. I am going to town.

Stage is an area where people board other transport (motorcycles, matatu’s etc). Parking and stage indicate where you want to stop. Photographs: Melissa Faulkner

www.forgetmenot.org.au


Love Letters..

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner it seems timely to re-ignite the lost art of letter writing through the raw beauty of secret and not-so-secret love letters. Lady Rose (aka Tessa Leon), a woman perpetually lost in Valentine’s Day, gave me 6 fail-proof steps for penning precious prose which I share with you now on the condition that we all write love letters to loved ones we know and those we admire at every opportunity! Be kooky. Be absurd. Be loving. Tips to the left & my first attempt to the right...

1 2 3 4 5 6

Start your love letter with a heart-melting greeting line. Make it sweet. My beloved. My darling. My sweet little honey pickle.

Write a sentence or two about why you are writing this love letter to them today. Set the scene.

Use metaphors to accentuate the romance. Seek inspiration from Mills & Boon or other ridiculously kitsch sources. Popular metaphors include: moon; stars; sunrise; sunset; water… Write a couple of sentences focusing on a more abstract characteristic of your loved one such as generosity or punctuality or the perfectly magical way they brush their teeth each morning flicking frothy paste bubbles onto the vanity mirror.

Share a hope for the future. Traditionally fairytales spruik a wish to live happily ever after but you can be more creative than that.

Sign off full throttle. Go the whole shebang! I hold my breathe for every moment until we meet again…

26 HERDMATTERS February 2014

1 2 3 4 5 6

My little pumpkin nose,

I’ve chosen to write this love letter to you because you need to know how much I love you and how important our relationship is to me. Your gorgeous brown eyes are as deep and dark as the gooey sweet chocolate that oozes from the centre of a sticky, sugary Byron Bay Donut scorching direct from the deep fryer. I find it difficult to not love you and smile every time you are in my thoughts. My aim, as your mother, is to be the strongest, most reliable laces for your Vans and the most perfectly rounded and weighted ball bearings for your skateboard: supporting you on each of your crazy adventures. Your wit and sense of fun is sometimes like swallowing a cup of popping candy catapulting down my throat – popping and clicking all the way… You take me by surprise and I laugh and cry and sometimes cough and splutter.

I hope our love remains the grippyest griptape keeping us together, even when we’re apart.

Your No.1 fan & greatest admirer, Your mumsy X


FINANCIAL PLANNING + MANIFESTATION + GRATITUDE + GOALS + POSITIVE MONEY BELIEFS - SABOTAGING BELIEFS = FINANCIAL SUCCESS

New Year plans that will have your finances singing and your charitable aspirations on track... Russell Geldard from Elston Partners can support you in reaching your financial goals while also supporting you in reaching your charitable goals through our unique referral partnership. Contact Russell today to meet for an initial discussion to find out more about your personal wealth generation success and how this decision will support Forget Me Not.

Contact: russell.geldard@elstonpartners.com.au Ph: 07 4128 3300

“In one drop of water are found all the secrets of all the oceans; in one aspect of You are found all the aspects of existence.” Kahlil Gibran

Photo: Matt Brice

www.forgetmenot.org.au


HERD MATTERS FORGET ME NOT VISITORS TRIP’N’TREK

OCTOBER 2014

NEXT EDITION MAY 2014

LIMITED PLACES

For those who like to plan a little in advance, consider joining our October Visitors Trip’n’Trek (dates to be confirmed). We are excited to announce that this trip will have an optional extra available: a short beginner-level trek with our friend and expert guide, Nabin. We are planning a fabulous cultural exchange for visitors of all ages. Bring your children or your parents. Grandparents welcome too. Get a group of friends together or go it alone! However you decide to do it, this trip will be an unforgettable adventure and brilliant opportunity to hang out, have fun and breathe… Enjoy the spectacular scenery as we wind our way through picturesque Nepalese scenery. Visit World Heritage listed sites that will blow your mind. Shop for intricate artwork, beautifully crafted jewellery, brassware, shawls and other Fair Trade treasures. Learn traditional Nepalese cooking styles and shop for fresh produce at a local market. Fill your bellies and your souls… Email enquiries@forgetmenot.org.au to register your interest. Numbers strictly limited. FORGET ME NOT POLICY ALL Visitor Trip participants must be accompanied by a Forget Me Not representative when visiting children in our care, and our projects. ALL Visitor Trip participants must attend Visitor Trip team briefings both prior to departure (phone/web/in person) and in country (in person). Outside of our Visitor Trips, we are unable to release the addresses of our projects. We trust you understand that we maintain this position strictly for the safety and protection of the precious children in our care.

A P R

MAR

F E B

89 DAYS

unforgettable

MY NEXT

CONGRATULATIONS Forget Me Not facebook liker Gunilla Myren took part in our Rocktober Challenge and scored a signed copy of Katie Noonan’s SONGBOOK. It’s lovely... Like us on facebook and keep up to date with what we are up to and maybe even win yourself some great prizes!

ENJOY BEING PART OF OUR HERD

The following page can be a blueprint to your next 3 months. Print & stick it somewhere you will see more than twice a day. Be accountable & be proud, share your goals, success stories and grattitude in HERD MATTERS email words & pictures to herdmatters@forgetmenot.org.au


89 DAYS PEOPLE TO SEE

FEB 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28

www.forgetmenot.org.au

A P R

MAR

PLACES TO GO

F E B

unforgettable

MY NEXT

THINGS TO DO

MAR 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31

APR 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30

THANK

YOU


Tickets $22 or 5 for $100 Available Online: www.friendsofforgetmenot.eventbrite.com.au

Herd Matters Feb 2014  

The magazine to inspire taking action in your life for self and herd because HERD MATTERS!

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