Thanks to all those who visited the Dodges Ferry artisan and produce market and donated money for us to bring over here with us, (and to those who donated to me personally). So far this money has been directed to several communities and individuals; a Rwandan dance troupe, a five year old girl (school fees for 2 years), an Indigenous community in Rwanda, and a local fella to help facilitate and translate the discussions and giving. Here at the Baobab Home so far the money has been used to paint a mural with the children in the kitchen.
I am conscious of the arguments around aid and giving. A prominent figure here in Africa has just been quoted as saying, they give you aid so that you glorify them and depend on them, they keep using it as a tool of control and management.
I remember an elder (and ex- ATSIC commissioner) in Australia once saying to me when I asked how I could help, he so bluntly, with kindness said something along the lines of, when we are ready, step aside and let us walk our own path.
As we found in Rwanda, giving is not always easy, as giving to many is giving to many opinions and ideas about what to do with money and how to receive it. Thanks to our local facilitator and interpretor, he did an awesome job to make sure the money we gave was invited and received with dignity in tact.