I've recently done a lot of design for a friend of mine, Dana Roskey, who runs the Tesfa Foundation. Tesfa (which means 'hope' in Amharic) is a local non-profit grass-roots charity organization that builds schools in Ethiopia (and soon other countries) for kids who otherwise wouldn't have access to early childhood education. These schools are built on a shoestring budget, and dollars go very far in Ethiopia: the first Tesfa school was built for $5,000, and they've got seven of them now. Teacher salaries are only $50 a month, so they're not difficult to keep funded through student sponsorships.
These schools aren't just benefiting the children; their mothers and older sisters can start small businesses and earn a better income, which helps the entire family. The schools often become community centers in villages that don't have much infrastructure.
Tesfa also helps teen girls who have run away to the capital city of Addis Ababa, hoping to escape arranged marriages or get access to schooling in the hopes of becoming professional athletes but discover that the streets are a difficult place to make a living. Team Tesfa provides safe housing, education, and proper nutrition so the girls can train and compete successfully as runners.
We redesigned the entire website and Tesfa brand from the ground up, and are having a launch party to celebrate. It's an open house at 5:30pm - 6:30pm Tuesday August 10 at Westminster Church downtown, in the Meisel room. Check http://www.ewestminster.org for directions and parking. This event is free, open to the public, and catered by Salsa a la Salsa.
Visit http://www.tesfa.org/launch to download the invitation PDF and see the video about how to build an origami rocket out of the invitation.
Please consider stopping by our open house. Even if you can't make it, check out their website to see how Tesfa is bringing hope to thousands of children and their families.