Introducing Our Giving Web

This is our Giving Web. A web of family and friends getting together to take care of other members of the global family. Its purpose is to build a school in a rural or an under-served region in Afghanistan. Anyone can become a member of the Giving Web by donating at least one dollar and by telling at least one friend about this project. I will start spinning the web by sending out the first email to my friends and family asking for donations and for passing the word around. They in turn donate and advocate to their friends who donate-advocate to their friends and so on…and on. Thus, together we shall create our very own Giving Web.

Now for all the logistical details…

How will the funding be collected and managed?
I have already found the organizations with whom we can work. Women’s Learning Partnership (WLP) is an organization for which I have volunteered on and off for 6+ years. They have agreed to collect the funds and manage the project. They work with the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL), their local partner organization in Afghanistan. WLP organized the ICT training that I facilitated in Afghanistan and AIL was my host in Kabul. I think very highly of these two organizations – the issues they work on, the communities they work with, their approach, and their philosophy. So, I can personally vouch for them. In the off chance that my word is not sufficient, ;-) here is more information.

Women’s Learning Partnership (WLP) is an international, non-governmental organization (NGO) that empowers women and girls in the Global South to re-imagine and re-structure their roles in their families, communities, and societies. WLP achieves this goal through providing leadership training, supporting capacity building, and helping women use new technologies to generate and receive information and knowledge. WLP conducts all of its work in collaboration with partner organizations located in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, and with members of an international network of experts. WLP is registered as a 501(c)(3) organization in the United States. For more go to: www.learningpartnership.org

Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) is an Afghan women’s non governmental organization (NGO) created in 1995 to help address the problem of poor access for women and girls to education and health services, their subsequent inability to support their lives, and the impact of this lack of education and health on Afghan society. AIL has offices in Kabul and Herat in Afghanistan and in Peshawar, Pakistan. They serve 350,000 women and children annually. AIL’s workforce is 83% women and the organization is the largest employer of women in Afghanistan.

What is the target amount?
Building a full-fledged school in Afghanistan will cost in the neighborhood of $100,000. Doesn’t that sound like an awful lot of money? Is that doable? Yes, that is an awful lot of money. No, I cannot do it on my own. However, that amounts to just 100 of us giving 1,000 dollars each. 1,000 of us giving 100 dollars each. Or 10,000 of us giving just 10 dollars each. Or 100,000 of us giving 1 dollar each. Now that is not a lot for a Giving Web is it? So, get that address book out – how many people do you know? :-)

How much can I give?
At least a dollar. That is the minimum. However, you can give as much as you want. And as many times as you wish.

Will I get a receipt for tax-deduction?
Not for a dollar. ;-) But if you give more than $10, WLP will give you a receipt.

How can I keep track of this project?
This blog will have frequent updates of funds raised. So, keep visiting.

Why else should I visit this blog again?
You can post your thoughts here and read what others are saying. There will be a few guest writers too. And more to come.

Enough already, just tell me how to give…
By check: Payable to Women’s Learning Partnership. Mail to: Women’s Learning Partnership (WLP), 4343 Montgomery Avenue, Suite 201, Bethesda, MD 20814, USA. Please earmark your checks for the “Afghanistan Project.”

By Credit Card: Network for Good. Make sure to designate your donation to the “Afghanistan Project.”

And then what?
Once you are done giving, please send an email to someone you think would want to participate or would like to hear about this project. Send it along with your personal note. Add this link: http://nadodi.typepad.com/yatra/2004/12/come_let_us.html so they can get to the introduction page. Or you can copy the link from the email you have already received.

You have heard all the do’s. Time now for some don’ts. Don’t just forward an email. Don’t be indiscriminate with your email address book or the cc/bcc fields. And if you have received an email from someone in the Giving Web, please, please don’t do a blanket forward. Endlessly forwarded messages and chain emails only have a nuisance value. They do not create or foster a dynamic community. So, it will not be in keeping with the spirit of this project

Note: This small effort is an outcome of what I saw and experienced when I was in Afghanistan. It is a personal effort that does not obligate you at all in any way. If you can neither donate nor advocate, then your wishes and prayers would suffice.

Thought for the day:

If you have come here to help me,
You are wasting your time.
But if you have come
Because your liberation is bound up with mine
Then let us work together.

— Anonymous Aboriginal Woman

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