The important one

Something a little different, this post is forward looking instead of backward.

This summer Katrien and I will be heading to southern Africa to volunteer though the Afnet charitable organization, which runs three day care centers, an orphanage, and four food assistance programs in local schools around Pretoria.  They attempt to fill the financial, physical, and emotional void left behind for children who have lost one or both parents to AIDS.

One of the programs is to deliver care packages to children in the schools.  They deliver as many as possible but only have so much, and have to restrict them to orphans in child headed households.

Child headed households.

Afnet is a Christian organization, and it forms an integral part of their programs.  However Katrien and I have elected to participate only in secular programs during our time in the countries.  Specifically we are focusing on two fundraising goals.

Pretoria is one of the three capitals of South Africa (I didn‘t know that either), and it has…many problems.  The orphanage and day care buildings have bars on the windows and many blank white walls giving them the air of prisons.  We are raising money for paint and supplies to give the orphanage (“Nellie’s”) and one of the daycare centers (“Ithemba la Bantwana”) some color, hopefully improving the atmosphere and dispelling the prison aura.

We estimate 3 or 4 days for this task, depending on number of people we find to help, and anticipate costs to be a couple hundred US dollars.

The second task concerns the second country we will be working in.  In addition to the centers in South Africa, Afnet runs a newly opening orphan center in Mansa, Zambia called “Icisub ilo Ca Bana“ which means “Hope for the Children.”  The center needs supplies, a van, and a manager, and we are going to deliver all three (the manager being the marvelous Lisa Poll, who you can read about at ).

This means driving a van from Pretoria, up through Botswana, to Zambia.  This is a journey of about 1,000 miles through three countries.  Our second fundraising goal is to pay for the gas and border fees.  We estimate these costs at $400.

So there you have it, we need about $600-700 to conduct these two projects.

Now.  To donate.

You have basically two options.  The first is to donate to money to Afnet directly via their website,
Using this option you can use the donation as a tax deduction.  If you do use this site, please email me the name it was donated under and the amount, so that we can make sure your donation goes to our projects instead of the general Afnet budget (unless that is what you want).

The second option is to send the money directly to me or Katrien.  If you are in Belgium, get the money to Katrien through transfer, carrier pigeon, or secret European tunnels.  For my peeps, you may be able to transfer to me directly, or can send the money to my folks in Half Moon Bay, who can get it to me.

Or (part two of option two)
I have a paypal account through my email at
If you pay from a credit card they charge a 2.9% fee, or a 3.9% if you’re paying from outside the US (since my account is based there).  If you are paying from another paypal account there is no charge.

We have set up a face book group for the project, which we will use for further updates, and to show pictures of your donation in action.  Which is awesome.  Gotta love the internet (access permitting.)  The group is “Tim and Katrien’s Trip to Africa”.  Man, I gotta take a class to be vaguely tech literate.  First things first though: paint and gasoline.