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May, 2012

Newsletter #23

Roger Brown's visit to Hogar Anita Goulden in February this year.

Roger Brown's visit to Hogar Anita Goulden
in February this year

One child stuck two figures on her forehead. When she was asleep I saw the glow and removed them. The next morning the story came out. She had put them for Father Christmas so he would know her. I ask you – the imagination of children. (Quote from Anita Goulden.)

Message from Roger Brown, Chairman

In last October's Newsletter I said that the good work at the home was continuing. This was based on reports from Piura. In January of this year I went there to see for myself, and I was delighted with what I found. This visit was a great pleasure – it was good to see the home running so well, and to find children, young people, staff and committee happy, with none of the difficulties of the past looming over them. Naturally, the very nature of the work means that there will always be problems which need solving, but while I left Piura feeling inspired, as always, on this occasion I also felt much more optimistic about the future than I have ever felt before. There is, of course, another reason for this: the home can only function because of the funds which you, our friends, supporters and donors, provide, and everyone in Piura and on the Trust is very much aware of this and deeply grateful for your continuing help. I was not the only visitor to Piura in January: a supporter, Petronila Schulz, was also there. Petronila is a complementary therapist, and she was of tremendous help to the residents of the home and the physiotherapists who work there. We are deeply grateful to her too. Her report is below.

Wheelchair dancing.

Wheelchair dancing

And there is yet more good news. In the last letter we appealed for your help by asking whether any of our readers would like to become a member of the Trust and/or be able to help our brilliant Administrator, Annabel Buchan. The response was pure gold: Pat Vigors, who works in the City, is our new Trustee, and Martha Edwards is now helping Annabel. They are both wonderful people and, incredibly, both have very strong connections with Peru. In Piura the members of the committee which manages the home, having done a very successful job over the last three years, have recently been re-elected for a further term by the Anita Goulden Association there, giving us further confidence that all will continue to be well and responsibly run. So please continue to help us if you feel able. By the way, thanks to helpers in Piura, you can see much of what goes on in the home in a video they have made and placed on You Tube. Here is the link:

Support A Child Project



On 31st August 2011 our Support A Child project came to an end. It was a time-consuming scheme which did not prove easy for the committee in Piura to administer, but even so it was of enormous benefit to the children with cerebral palsy and other chronic conditions. The donations raised from this sponsorship was distributed and those sponsored spent this money in different ways if they were able to decide for themselves. Rosmery spent hers on a computer and here is a translation of her “thank you” letter to her sponsor:

Dear…[……]…My name is Rosmery…I am living in the town of Piura. With the assistance of the Hogar Anita Goulden I have been able to complete my course in Law and Political Science and get my degree, to to be confirmed very soon. I am writing to thank you for the money you sent which I spent on a laptop. I shall be using it during my professional training and it will be a hugely useful tool in the preparation of my dissertation, master's degree and ultimately in the courses I shall take to complete my academic training. Although I don't know you personally nor have I had any previous contact with you, I thank you in a special way for this great gesture. In the name of all the residents of the Home, thank you for the support you are offering, as well as others like you who continue to show such goodness and generosity which ensures that Anita Goulden's wonderful work goes on. Equally I should like to thank all the member of the AG Trust for the enormous effort and hard work they have undertaken from so far away to give a better quality of life to the young people and children of the Asociacion Civil Anita Goulden. — Best wishes from Piura, Peru. Rosmery.

Quite a success story.

Sallie Morgan Tells of Her Weekend In Devizes

Brenda, Katty and Karina.

Brenda, Katty and Karina

In response to a request for a speaker from the Anita Goulden Trust by a longstanding and most loyal supporter, Mrs.Ursula McKinnon, my husband and I recently attended the Mission Weekend at the Methodist Church of St. Andrew's, Devizes. On the Saturday evening we sat down amongst about sixty others to a meal with a Peruvian flavour, Pollo con Arroz, and pudding. This was to be followed by a presentation of approximately one hour. A short introduction to Anita's work in Peru and particularly in Piura, plus an explanation as to how we came to visit her there in 1999 and 2001, preceded a partial showing of the ever popular and very moving documentary ‘For the Sake of the Children’. A few of our own slides illustrated the area, and some of the children whose stories were told. Interest in the subject was very lively despite the advancing hour and we were assured that many present would be in church the following day when a further talk was to be given.

For this I offered one or two significant extracts from Anita's own words and the exceptional tributes paid to her to be found in the collection ‘When the Chilalo Bird Sings’. I also relayed the Trust's confidence in the recent positive developments at the Hogar Anita Goulden which include the better housing, sensory room for the severely disabled and the increasing support from the local community. We were greatly touched by the warmth of our welcome at St. Andrew's and the kind hospitality extended to us by the Rev. and Mrs. Cory. It is with our most grateful thanks to them and to the congregation that we record the very generous donations amounting to nearly £500.00 which bear testimony to the high regard in which Anita's continuing work is held.

Petronila Schulz's Experience In Piura

Ever since I saw a documentary about the work of Anita Goulden with dispossessed and incapacitated children in Piura, I became curious to know how a foreigner from England was able to live in isolation with the shortages of everything, and to be able to help the underprivileged, in one of the hottest parts of Peru! A trip to Anita Goulden's Hogar! At the end of January this year, I took a trip to the Hogar de Anita Goulden in Piura, Peru. During the week I was there I did appreciate the valuable work that Anita Mollet, the President of Geramis de Velasques, and each member of the staff do to benefit the disadvantaged children who live there all the year round. They are very well looked after. When a child is not feeling well, or needs a medical check up, immediately he or she is taken to the nearest hospital. The staff administer the medicine. They take care of their health, cleanliness and nourishment. At meal times everybody, including the cook and cleaner, rush to feed each of the children who are unable to feed themselves. Most of them are sitting down in a wheelchair during the day.

I was staying in the Hogar and at night if a child woke up, I could immediately hear fast walking steps from one of the nurses on duty to give support. I think the children lack toys and other stimuli to help to encourage and develop their imagination, as well as the use of classical music at least 2 to 3 hours per day. The children haven't got an open space to get into contact with Nature, lie down and play on the grass, since the weather over there is hot most of the time. Now there is a group of Volunteers who once a week take the children to the Park for 2 hours. This particular day is expected and full of joy for everybody. I think we need to continue to support the Trust over here to be able to keep Hogar Anita Goulden running and to support the children who live there. I think The Anita Goulden Trustees are doing an amazingly good job under the circumstances. Because the Home needs a lot of money to keep going, it requires all of our efforts financially to help and support those who need to be supported and cannot manage without the Trust. I found the Home a wonderful place to stay for a few days. Petronila is a complementary therapist and was a great help to some of the children.

Financial Report by David Thomas, Trustee

Brenda, Katty and Karina.

Annabel and Roger fundraising
at the POCWA Spring Fair

The present period of economic crisis, which shows few signs of coming to an end, is a difficult time for charities. Falling disposable incomes mean less money available for charitable giving, and interest rates at record lows are reducing returns on charities' investments. It is particularly gratifying, against this background, to see that regular donations to the Anita Goulden Trust have continued almost unabated and the Trustees would like to express their deep gratitude to our many donors. This steady flow of funding is of huge importance to the continued operation of the Home. The Trustees try to maintain some funds in reserve to act as a buffer for any fluctuation in income and to meet capital expenditures and unforeseen operating costs as they arise at the Home, but these reserves would very soon be exhausted without the regular income from donations.

The Trust continues to be the only source of monetary support for the Home, without which it could not fulfill its extraordinary mission to deprived sections of the community in Piura. The board and members of the excellent Peruvian charitable association that now operates the Home have, however, done an outstanding job of raising donations in kind from local businesses, municipal agencies and individuals. This meets a long expressed desire by the Trust to see broader and more diverse sources of local support for the Home and it means that the funds raised in the UK produce an ever higher quality and broader scope of services provided by the Home.