SHIPMENT FEEDBACK

Benin, bordered by Togo and Nigeria in West Africa, is rich in natural beauty and cultural history, but is one of the world’s poorest nations. Benin’s 9.4 million people still lack access to basic social services and are dependent upon agriculture and farming crops like corn or soya, which is threatened by climate change, further endangering already fragile livelihoods.

Crossroads sent a shipment bound for a region of Benin where our NGO partners are addressing these needs through a carefully-structured system of women’s “micro companies”, where women who show motivation and a desire to change their circumstances attend evening training and educational sessions for 3 years.

“Since receiving the container there have been great changes in the lives of the population.”NGO staff

Sewing machines from Crossroads’ container are helping women in poor communities learn skills that are helping them start businesses and lift their families out of poverty.

Computers and furniture from the shipment have set up a community computer centre, where eager youth can now access the internet, use computers for their school work and engage with the wider world.

Crossroads volunteers loading the Benin container in Hong Kong

The shipment was a huge boost to our partners’ operations, with goods that not only helped their own offices and administration, but were a very real investment in their job creation and training projects.

Impact of Crossroads’ shipment so far:

  • Computers and furniture set up a new computer centre, now attended by 110 people per day. 20 youth have been formally trained in computer skills already, and 5 young people have been employed to manage the centre.
  • 30 young women are enrolled in dressmaking classes using sewing machines from the shipment, with several already having completed the training.
  • A care home for vulnerable children has increased its capacity from 30 to 60 children, thanks to furniture and household goods from the shipment.
  • 2,000 of the area’s most vulnerable, like orphans, widows and elderly, were reached with distribution of essentials from the shipment including clothing and mattresses.
  • An estimated 3,000 people were directly impacted by goods from the shipment, with a further 20,000 estimated to be indirectly impacted.

We’re grateful to all who contributed to this shipment, investing in the lives of the poor in Benin. Turn over for more stories of how the goods have touched people’s individual lives!

Madeleine is widowed, with three children to support. She’s thankful to be learning how to sew, thanks to the sewing machines from Crossroads, and hopes to use her newfound skills to earn an income.

Martine is a widow, and was unemployed, finding it very hard to climb out of poverty. Now that she’s learnt sewing skills using the equipment from Crossroads’ shipment, she’s been able to take on small jobs and can now afford to buy clothes for herself and her children, and feed them properly, as well as pay for their health and education.

Grace, in 3rd form, is a grateful recipient of a bicycle from Crossroad’s shipment. It was hard for her to get to school on time, traveling on foot, and she was often late for class even if she left home early. Having a bike has drastically reduced her commute and made it that much easier for her to stay in school and improve her future!

Jacques was born healthy, but suffered an illness that left him paralysed later in childhood. His mobility is severely limited, and he had no way to get around without the help of his mother. Now, with a wheelchair from Crossroads’ shipment, he’s proud and grateful to be able to control his own mobility and has renewed hope for the future.

“Our thanks to Crossroads Foundation of Hong-Kong and DHL for the sewing and embroidery machines,” said the women’s cooperative, in a joyful statement. “


“We are learning and working together for the good of our children and our homes.”

Reference No. S4125

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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Job Creation and Training

S36881UN statistics indicate that up to 78% of Zambians in rural areas are living in poverty, as our consignee for this shipment can attest. When the large mining company in their town closed down, huge numbers of people lost their jobs and are now struggling to survive. Along with the loss of jobs came the demise of medical clinics and sports clubs and other social amenities also run by the mining company. Added to this is the HIV/AIDs problem, which has resulted in many orphaned children in this area. Our consignee aims to improve and change people’s lifestyles. Their programmes focus heavily on education and training to impart marketable skills and bring hope for the future. This is the third shipment to this organisation that has proved well able to use what we send.

 

4Brian (right) benefitted greatly from the computers which arrived in a container from Crossroads – he learnt up-to-date skills at the project’s computer school and was able to find work in a business centre. Then he was able to take part in a government election registration exercise, and with the money he was paid he started ‘B and D business centre’, employing four people!

 

Potential impact:

  • Computer training for at least another 50 young people.
  • A Sewing centre to train at least another 50 young people.
  • Clothing and essentials for 125 school children & wider families.
  • Children from remote areas able to attend school.

Shipment includes:

  • Computers & sewing machines for school and vocational training
  • A minibus for bussing children to school
  • School chairs, desks and equipment
  • Clothing and household goods for local communities.

 

This shipment will help their project to improve the lives of children in the area and give hope for the future.

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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Zambia Snapshot

Population: 14.83 million
Capital: Lusaka
Zambia is a beautiful, landlocked country in Southern Africa, with a tropical climate.

74.5% of people in Zambia live below the international poverty line of US$1.25 per day.
40% of children are involved in some kind of child labour
1.1 million people are living with HIV.

A65

Education, training and health

“Education is a major problem here, since most of the children do not go to school,” wrote our partners in Uganda when requesting a shipment. “There are very few schools in the area and those which are there are in a worrying state. Many young girls end up being forced into marriage at an early age because they are not going to school.” They asked Crossroads to help them with supplies and equipment that would help not just young school students, but young adults who need job training, and also community health centres that are seriously under-resourced.

DSC_0257

“The donation of hospital beds has led to improved health at our institute and also within the community at large.”

 

The goods in this shipment, which included furniture, hospital beds, medical goods and school equipment, were an injection of hope into this community, where our partners are battling against poverty with few resources themselves. They told us of thousands of dollars saved by schools and health clinics, who now don’t need to purchase or upgrade equipment. “This donation saved us around US$10,285,” they said, of the medical supplies and hospital beds.

Most of the goods from the shipment simply can’t be purchased in this part of Uganda, making them all the more valuable to our partners’ work. The toys and educational aids, which are already enriching the lives of local children, will also be used to set up a child training centre where the NGO will loan out the equipment to families that can’t afford them. A vocational centre received beds, bedding and kitchenware which will allow them to support young people who stay in the residential centre while studying.

Thank you for your part in transforming the lives of so many in rural Uganda through this shipment!

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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Donate to a shipment like this one.

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Uganda Snapshot

Population: 37.58 million
Capital: Kampala

Uganda is a fertile, land-locked country in East Africa, in the Africa Great Lakes region, with a tropical climate.

Great progress has been made in fighting HIV in Uganda, but 1.5 million people still live with the disease, and there are 1 million children orphaned by HIV/AIDS.

39% of girls are married by the age of 18. 37.7% of people in Uganda live below the international poverty line of US$1.25/day.

A6

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It might not look like a treasure chest. But the 40 foot shipping container outside the only school in Kamwokya slum is filled with valuables that are changing Ugandan futures, one child at a time. Children in the densely packed, dangerous Kamwokya slum once had nowhere to go to school, while their parents went to work in surrounding neighbourhoods. Now, this school is a beacon of hope, educating 2,000 pupils, not just in academic subjects but in life skills, job training and children’s rights.

FABBAs container provides valuable storage space at Ugandan slum school ...

They struggle with very few resources, though. We responded with the shipment sent by Fund Managers, Asian Bankers and Brokers Awards (FABBAs). As a result, the school library in Kamwokya is now filled with text books, the boys’ soccer team wears uniforms, the students sit at new desks and chairs, and some of the poorest students, who previously slept on the floor, now have soft new mattresses and warm blankets. All have a new zeal to attend school each day.

 

It’s FABBAs – our largest single donor in 13 years – who made this possible. At their 2013 banquet, FABBAs raised a staggering HK$1.5 million for Crossroads’ operations and international shipments.

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

Give Now!

Donate to a shipment like this one.

DONATE MONEY

Donate Goods!

Want to donate goods for a shipment like this one?

DONATE GOODS

Uganda Snapshot

Population: 37.58 million
Capital: Kampala

Uganda is a fertile, land-locked country in East Africa, in the Africa Great Lakes region, with a tropical climate.

Great progress has been made in fighting HIV in Uganda, but 1.5 million people still live with the disease, and there are 1 million children orphaned by HIV/AIDS.

39% of girls are married by the age of 18. 37.7% of people in Uganda live below the international poverty line of US$1.25/day.

A6

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In Mongolia’s capital city of Ulaanbaatar, those struck by poverty seek shelter in the city’s heating and water systems below the streets. They emerge occasionally to pick through garbage heaps above for food, and some will scavenge for plastic or glass to sell to scrape a meal together. Mary and Martha Mongolia formed to offer relief to the poor by providing them with a place to live and a chance to learn marketable trade skills. The pioneering organisation trains these people to create handicrafts based on traditional materials and techniques which they can then sell to support themselves and their families. Each purchase allows this work to continue, bringing renewed dignity and hope to the poor.

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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Established in 1977, Gospel House Handicrafts produces quality wooden educational aids and recreational toys under fair trade conditions. Its mission is to raise the standard of living of employees, producers and their relevant communities in Sri Lanka, many of whom have few opportunities for training and employment. Gospel House also aims to add value to the country’s sustainable resources. By purchasing these products, you are helping improve the quality of life of these individuals in Sri Lanka.

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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read more ...

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The quantity was astonishing: 7,000 brand new toys, donated through our Global Hand service by a leading toy manufacturer. NGOs across...

read more ...

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"Finally, the repair of our maternity hospital is finished," wrote our colleagues in the Ukraine. "Your beds are in refurbished rooms...

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