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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Party? Party!

Looking for some awesome planners who might want to do something good for the world by hosting a fundraising party for STEP UP OLPC sometime at the end of this year or beginning of next year.

Send me an email if you want to join our international team of people who will each plan parties in a different location, to take place during the same week, to raise money for our computer program. And there can be variety, too- from a luncheon to a dinner party to a dance party to a gallery event, to a poetry slam, anything is an option!

Thinking January 13th-16th might be a good date range. Comment or email me at now!

Monday, September 27, 2010

A note about Haiti

I don't usually mix business with pleasure, but I work for Waveplace and we recently got an incredible email from one of our mentors in Haiti.

Wanted to share it to see if anyone might be able to lend a hand. A very heartwarming/crushing story about our mentors, who are living in poverty themselves, who are working for free to give their students an education since we don't have any funding to pay them.

Read about it here:

Saturday, September 4, 2010

New Challenges / Adventures in Finance

With the school year over and a new one ahead of us, here's some updates on new initiatives/future costs for the continuation of our program in São Tomé.

For me to get to São Tomé, it will cost about $2,000 roundtrip EACH TIME. That's pretty hefty when you're raising about $3,000 per year and don't feel it's right to use that money all for your benefit.

New changes are happening in the São Tomé government, but we've gotten interest from the Embassy of Taiwan to build programs like the one in São João in four other schools across the country. This includes installing an internet hookup in all of the locations and training teachers as well. It also means we'll need to get someone local who can coordinate between the different programs. I'm writing this into our funding proposal with the Embassy but it's always good to to think ahead. A local coordinator will work with teachers, help develop the program further, and keep in touch with me and in OLPC. They will be proficient in English (for research and development purposes), a go-getter who doesn't give up easily, and passionate about technology and education. We're hoping to cut a salary of at LEAST $250 per month, which is about $3,000 per year.

Thanks to Group Excellence, Ltd, we'll be supplying our teachers with netbooks just as soon as I actually get out to the post office to mail them. We couldn't be happier with this news and are excited to get them shipped out!

My friend Faia has finally finished a cabinet for us to house our laptops. I hear it's not the prettiest thing in the world, but it does its job. And the best part is, the school's principal has requested that the unused cantina in the back of the school be swept and cleaned so that we can put the cabinet in there and maybe even make it a sort of technology room! Pictures to come if I can convince someone to take some.

As you can see, we need a clear way of getting money into this program. Not sure what the answer to that is yet, but speaking to local churches is not a bad idea. I wonder if I can't put on a fundraiser down here in NC (my new home) and maybe even across the USA. We could all party at the same time for the same event, wouldn't that be cool?

Thinking about how we could work this. If you have ideas, share 'em.


Please click the button below to donate to STEP UP OLPC to support the São João school's computer program in São Tomé:

Donate $200 and you will be paying for a computer for at least FIVE very special children at São João (as estimated computer life is five years). Thanks so much!

Want your donation to be tax-deductible? Send a check to STeP UP with OLPC in the memo. Then mail it to:

Eric McClafferty
Kelley and Drye
3050 S St. NW, #400
Washington, DC 20007