Review of Assignments

  • E feeling positive about the ideas for a mission statement and logos coming together
  • Jess info about Bukavu Women’s Trauma and Healing Center:  Seems more concentrated on assisting women with resources to financially support themselves, less about therapy??  Will find out about “Farmers of Hope” in Kiliba, DRC
  • Alicia attending a Micro-finance conference, anyone else interested??
  • Leilani created Excel spreadsheet of contact information, will email to the group; created a gmail account for the group to share calendars, spreadsheets of assignments and activities, chat possibilities



  • PR/Media: E, Camille, Nathaniel, Bethany
  • Operations: Alicia, Taylor, Steve
  • Community: Jess, Leilani, Sarah


Organogram – Current SOH, Bukavu structure

  • General Assembly – “Members” i.e. Parents, Donors, Share Holders, Directors and Teachers
  • General Board/Administrative – Seven key leaders of SOH in Bukavu, governing council
  • Gestation – Overseeing group, members from General Assembly and Board/Administrative; packages received, emails sent, money given, all shown to the Gestation group to be sure all interactions, finances, supplies are accounted for
  • Coordination – Coordinator, Executive Director = Emmanuel
  • Sports and Recreation, Service Programs, Vocational/Technical Training and Business Classes still Ideas; all other programs in progress



·         Send over $800 covering costs for Kasava grinder, $383.30 for basic school expenses school and $600 for teacher salary – all coming from Catalyst



·         Logo finished by next Friday, October 19, 2007

·         Idea for book of children stories from the children themselves post-visit in June to continue fundraising



  • Contact with Emmanuel, what kids and parents need, what children do after school hours, therapy options
  • Combining with other organizations: Women’s Trauma and Healing has a “Mother/Daughter” teaching program; perhaps incorporate this concept with students at the school or Women’s Trauma/Healing could make the clothes for their program for SOH school
  • Focus on the school, the community will be assisted as the school is assisted; we help the school and the community benefits


Business Plan necessary!!!!


Next meeting Thursday, November 1, 2007 at 7:00 pm

Introductions (introduce Chelle and Nathaniel)
1. Update on Projects – 5 min
1. The two new temporary structures are now built
1. Have 5 teachers, who need to get 100 a month
2. 1 Director, 1 watchman, and 1 Assistant (total $600/month)
3. 153 Children
1. Now we have 153 Kids.
1. Garden: 35 Pupils
2. 1st form: 47 Pupils
3. 2nd form: 31 Pupils
4. 3rd form: 26 Pupils
5. 4th form: 14 Pupils

Continue Reading »


    Signature card: Taylor
    Expense sheet: Steve
    Mission statements: E, Bethany, Sara (everyone please send ideas via e-mail to them)
    Website: Nathaniel, Camille, Steve (need logo and mission statement first)
    Container specifics and research: Julie (Jake Packard; Janalyn sells freight; Bernard)
    Sister School, Reach for the Children, Play Pump: Chelle
    World Food Organization: Bethany
    The Bukavu Women Trauma and Healing Center: Jess
    Globus Relief: E
    Run for Congo Women: Sara
    Teach a Man to Fish: Alicia
    Lap Top initiative: $200/laptop. Buy one, they’ll send one to a child. Attempt to bridge the technology gap between kids here and there. Not as high-tech computers.
    Excel spreadsheet of info: Leilani
    Read French newspapers, listen to the French stations, get French CD’s to listen to










‘Sowers Of Hope’ Meeting

13 September 2007 : 2 Hours

In attendance:
Steve Nelson: Year 2000 started Catalyst Humanitarian engaging in adventure Philanthropy teaming with NGO’s to benefit their community; ambitious and outgrew itself, separated to better prepare and educate themselves. Studied Music at the UofU; finishing MPA for Urban Planning.

Julie Nelson: SOH passed off by Bernard; Studied Math at BYUH and Music at UofU; married to Steve and have two-year-old, expecting new baby; Funded SOH for a few years through Fundraising.

Taylor Parkin: Involved with Catalyst doing Finance; Sold shoes forever; Financial Advisor for GP Morgan & Chase; Economics and PS BA, and MPA at UofU

Camille Nelson: Involved with Catalyst Humanitarian; Marketing work for SOH; MPA at UofU; Guitar Teacher and Web Developer.

Elizabeth (E) Vincent: Involved with Catalyst Humanitarian; Public Relations for SOH; PR for Intermountain Health Care; Studied English at UofU.

Bethany Alan: Studied Journalism and Liberal Arts at Utah State; Worked with Special Olympics Utah; Current Legal Assistant; Social Work experience and works with children.

Jessica Salmon: Studied Social Work at BYUH; Involved with SOH during idea phase; MSW from BYU.

Alicia Vial:
Studied International Cultural Studies at BYUH; Studying at BYU Law School, MPA joint degree; Speaks French and visited DRC and SOH Summer 2007.

Leilani Bascom: Studied Fine Arts at BYUH; Worked with media and donors for beginnings of SOH; Photographer.

Jim Collins Theory: “First Who and then What?”

Introduction of Staff in DRC:

  • Bernard and Family: Steven (son), Fred (son), Kathryn (daughter), Ya Ya (wife), new daughter, Honoree (friend) in charge of projects for the school
  • Emmanuel BALEKE : Field Coordinator
  • Malgache MALYANGA : In Charge of Finance and Organizational Developement
  • Joël MAPATANO : SOH Attorney
  • Honoré BIRINDWA : In Charge of Projects
  • Luc CHIBASHIMBA : President of the Administrative Counsel
  • Madame Marthe NZIGIRE : Director of the School
  • Justin BUZERA : In Charge of Vocational Training
  • David ASIFIWE : In Charge of the Youth
  • Faustin : Presidents of the Parents Counsel

Where has the project been?

  • Julie worked with Catalyst, organized a team, connected with Emmanuel corresponded each week and learned that the school needed Finances and Supplies. Used garage sales for funding, supplied student uniforms and three large boxes. It took eight months to arrive with games, pencils, paper pads, magnidoodles, etc.
  • Everything was donated for SOH through work of Catalyst and from the community.
  • Began “Adopt A Life” program with a photograph and description of each child. Families supporting each child could write to them, had information about DRC, $10/month toward nutrition, supplies, uniforms; certificate stated that an individual or family officially financially adopted a child.
  • Discontinued this program because of language barriers having surface information in emails and miscommunication. Unsafe at the time to visit and see the children. Sending money monthly with uncertainty of where the money was going, how the money was being used. Didn’t feel there was enough accountability or control from their part.

Where is the project now?

  • Alicia was able to visit SOH during June 2007. Emmanuel and Malagash (certified Accountant) met her at the airport and were thrilled she speaks French.
  • The school is the center of these individuals wanting a social enterprise for their community; want to open an internet café, center for trade and influx of power, the UN is in Bukavu and the rebels will not go there, but it is crowded with people living in poverty and with little education.
  • The school started as a vision to help orphaned children from the Rwandan/DRC conflict. They help to find their parents, or people who will care for them, and then the children are enrolled in school.
  • The SOH workers give everything they have, time and money, toward helping these young children receive an education. There are 140 students from K-3 grades. Would like to build temporary structures for two new classrooms, and the teachers are donating toward it. Two teachers have had new babies but are exciting to continue teaching.
  • Before Alicia left many mothers prepared speeches of gratitude for educating their children, sending supplies and support, and just to care and give them hope has made such a difference and making these connections with us will continue!

Where can the project go?

  • The main needs in Bukavu are money and training. They have the man-power and the education and are completely dedicated to the children. Running a business in a non-capitalistic society is difficult and need assistance with ideas and innovation.
  • Vision: Gain funding, receive an endowment, put the money into a trust to build money upon that. Use this money to build a new school
    • Get better methods of communication between us and the directors of Sowers
    • Visits from our side with training and assistance at least once a year
  • Alicia communicates with Emmanuel in French and English and still work with the distance to be sure concepts are understood. Goal to take a team of professional workers and thinkers over next summer 2008 to be committed for the long term. Specialists.
  • SOH has a state curriculum to follow, integrate with an educator.
  • We want the school to be K-6 and the temporary classrooms have brought the classes from K-5. When they finish grade 3 they are integrated into another school for now, but ideally want to continue the education process.
  • Would like to help with nutrition and introduce micro-credit to the families and help them to feed their families themselves. Many parents already own their own small businesses and could grow and benefit through micro-credit loans.
  • Everything is focused to teach the directors, teachers, and parents how to become independent throughout the entire process as the school and social enterprise grows.
  • Grinding machine for the community, Mulan, estimated $200/month to grind grains and starting cost estimated $800. Community members wait in lines to grind their kasava and are charged to use the grinders.
  • The community is beginning to recognize the name “Sowers” and identifying it with the immense efforts of the school and the goodness and the school workers. Literacy classes for parents and adults are also provided, strengthening the families. English clubs with kids studying dictionaries in English and comparing it to French, teaching each other, she gave them her French/English dictionary. The dictionaries they were using were so old that the English was outdated
  • Gender issues exist, girls don’t speak when boys are present. Alicia suggested create two groups, girls and boys to practice separately and choose each a leader and have the girl lead the boys and a boy lead the girls to begin the interaction. Culturally women are taught they can’t think as well as men, but the men and women want to change that mind set and have everyone educated.

Needs of SOH

  • 501c3 Status: Catalyst filed SOH as a DBA (doing business as…)? First need to Incorporate online and 501c3 status will take about twelve months (federal) and corporate the organization (county). Delegate the compilation of information to work as a team with the 501c3 form. Employee Identification Number for the organization (EIN) using SS-4 form at for free!
  • Want to restart “Adopt a Life” program to fund each individual child. Connect with big corporations, have SOH organization and donate ourselves to show how important it is to us, investing our time and money.
  • Money concerns – various experiences with “money sent to Africa.” Donors will need to see our interaction as a team, enough expressed about the six years of the school in working order and its workers. Want everything completely legitimate and money being used for what it is deemed toward and trust between the SOH entities in the US and DRC. Donors will want to know how we monitor the money use.
  • SOH has been trying to connect with other NGOs in Bukavu, but were more legitimately recognized when they were able to take Alicia to the UN and discuss our goals.
  • Work to build incremental trust: buy a grinder; send pictures and receipts of the grinder; send receipts of how the grinder is earning money for SOH. Have record of money transactions and who picks up the money, and where does the money go, etc.
  • Annual visits significant to review the work being done, view how the money has been used, don’t begin sending cash but rather supplies to build the schools in a container (bricks, toilets, and keep the container as a warehouse. Ideal land $8,000 for 3 acres buying the right to build as a land lease from the government.
  • Short-term: 501c3 Status, constant communication as a group, blog kaditacongo with links to Bukavu of what Alicia is doing, understand the mission statement and begin building a website. Catalyst has condoned using some money for SOH. An account is being set-up in DRC right now with, need swift code and account number, or set up with Key Bank (City Bank) or Chase – $3 difference for transfer fees.
  • Trip to DRC: It is not somewhere that is necessarily stable. Those that are going need to know that it is what they should personally be doing. Bukavu is safe, the UN is one mile from SOH. Rebels in villages thirty miles from Bukavu. Never walk alone at night, always be with one or two members of SOH or Bernard’s family. Place to stay at Christian Hostile or rent a house with security. Emotionally difficult, group of Americans attracts great attention, we should be tactful and mindful about how to be more inconspicuous. Africa needs brain power – give emotionally, mentally, analytically, culturally respectful.
  • Two week time frame during the end of June before summer break. At least $1800 airfare through Europe to Kenya or Ethiopia to Kigali, Rwanda and drive to Bukavu. Key positions: Photographer/Documenter; Financial Vision; Entrepreneur; PR; Educator; Social Enterprise. Group of five to ten people maximum.

Develop our own brand we all support; plan and work together bi-monthly. Build a solid framework. Delegate 501c3 obligations. Meet again on Tuesday, September 25 at 7:30pm. We as a group fund the money for kasava grinder? $200 – $300 from Catalyst to pay teachers and get supplies.

The PlayPump

This ingenious idea is in use in SA countries and they hope to be in 10 African nations by 2010. Perhaps we can partner up with them to have a pump installed at the school in Bukavu.

Kick Off Meeting

Tonight we met with 9 fresh professionals all geared up to get Sowers off and Running. Those that were there were Taylor – Finance, E-PR, Camille-Non-Profit Management, Steve and Julie-Non-Profit and Business Management, Leilani-Photographer, Jessica-Social Worker, Bethany-PR and Legal, and myself, Law-and starting with Non-Profit Management.

We made a dynamite team. We discussed all about where Sowers has come from and how we are going to help it reach its potential.

We will be working between now and the 25th of September to put together a logo, start a website, put together a business plan and work at completing our 501(c)(3) registration.

Notes from the meeting will be posted tomorrow.

Peace Out and good night!

Oh, and In Bukavu they have been able to come up with enough cash among the coordinators of Sowers to build two temporary structures so that they will be able to teach 40 more kids this year.

Once they get their account in the name of Sowers we are prepared to send them enough money to buy a mill, which they can use to charge to grind peoples grains and put the profits towards the school. We will also be able to sustain them for a few months as we get legit enough to get some more sustainable funding.

Getting Educated

There are good NGOs and great NGOs. In my opinion the best of the best are those who work from the ground up. I am excited to work to help realize what those on the ground in Bukavu have already envisioned and built the foundation for. In starting the process to legitimize our NGO I have enrolled in three classes. French Business, The Legalities of Non-Profits and Creating and Managing Social ventures.

One of the most exciting pieces of information I have gleaned from these classes is that someone has already done what we hope to be able to do in Bukavu. Check out I have not learned much about it at this point but I have a feeling that it will be crucial to our success.

Sowing Hope

I took a trip this summer to visit Sowers of Hope in the Congo. A lot of you were instrumental in getting it started and I want to give you the chance to get involved again if you want to. For those of you who have not been involved, I am excited to have any help you would be able to offer.

We will be holding a meeting this Coming Thursday the 13th of Sept. and one of our goals is to get a new logo that will be able to communicate what Sowers of hope is. I have teamed up with Steve and Julie Nelson who directed and Fundraised for Sowers from around 2002-2004, we will be holding the meeting in Steve’s office in Holiday, Utah. Team Catalyst was an organization that offered legal status and funds to Non-Profits.

Steve was one of the directors of Team Catalyst and although team catalyst is no longer in operation its members are continually generous in lending their resources to Sowers. Check out their Website at Go to programs and you can check out Sowers old page.

I will explain briefly what our little group at BYUH was able to be part of building. Sowers started with just the idea of starting a school for Refugee Orphans. It has now grown to a big organization with the hopes of having a fully functional school, Literacy education for adults, English Training and exam prep for secondary students, Micro Credit for the parents of the Children of the School, and internet cafe to provide research opportunities for the students and more business opportunities for the area.

The goal of the organization is to play an essential role in developing and creating opportunities for the population of Panzi. There are still a lot of Orphans who go to the school and who are continually being found and placed with families to watch over them. Problems like rape and violence are still rampant in the area and Sowers also seeks to provide some relief and opportunities to victims of systematic rape and their children. They have really taken on the role of Sowing Hope.

Stay tuned for more information about the project and how you can get involved.

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