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October, 2015

Newsletter #27

Hector.

New Resident, Hector

We have to walk in darkness to value the light beyond. If you have never failed in anything it is a certainty that you have never tried anything. You must rise above failures. The best men and women are moulded by failure. (Quote from Anita Goulden.)

Message from Roger Brown, Chairman

There is a great deal of wonderful content in this latest edition of the Newsletter, so I must keep my own contribution short, though there are a couple of things which I very much want to say. One is to give grateful thanks to Ev Marie Zeeb, a volunteer from Germany, for all her help in the Piura home from July of last year to January of this, and for her excellent and inspiring report of her time there. She clearly worked enormously hard, and made herself very useful. We may be sure that the children and staff were delighted by her visit, and the Trust is deeply grateful to her (how I wish that I had her command of several languages!) The news from the home is that all continues to go well there as, this year, it celebrates the tenth anniversary of moving into its present building.

The Trust is proposing to mark this by providing extra funds for two things the home needs: electric inhalers (of enormous benefit to those residents with breathing difficulties) and a new television set to show teaching videos of various kinds for both staff and children. Soon three additional physical therapists will be working at the home as part of the practical work experience required to complete their training, and that too will be a huge help to everyone there. I must stop, but I cannot do so without expressing the Trust’s deeply felt thanks and appreciation for the support of all our readers. Already, in Piura, costs are going up, reserves are being drawn on and it is only through your help that we can ensure that the home is able to continue to function and to improve the lives of those who depend on it. Thank you truly.

Two New Residents

Ana Alicia.

New Resident, Ana Alicia

Over the past few months the Anita Goulden Home has welcomed two new residents, Hector and Ana Alicia, who are both receiving daily treatment and care within the Home. We are pleased to report that both are making good progress with their respective conditions and limitations. Four-year-old Hector arrived at the Home in April from his home town of Huancabamba, in the mountains outside of Piura. His mother always knew that there was something wrong with his development but was unable to get to see the specialists that he required. When he arrived at the Home, he was very underweight and malnourished. The staff at the Home have managed to have him assessed by specialists and he has been diagnosed as having cerebral palsy and neonatal hypoglycaemia. He is unable to speak and can see very little, but gradually, with the help of his daily physio sessions and medication, he is showing signs of development and is now smiling a lot when he is interacting with people. Hector is the smallest and youngest resident in the Home and hugely popular with the staff and volunteers alike. The other new arrival is Ana Alicia, who is 12-years

old and arrived at the Home suffering from Charcot-Marie- Tooth disease, which is a disorder of the peripheral nervous system, characterised by progressive loss of muscle tissue and touch sensation across various parts of the body. She is having physical therapy every day to assist with the condition and the main priority is to help her with her balance so that she doesn’t fall so much. Ana Alicia goes to the state school every day and loves music. She is always fully involved in the day to day activities in the Home.

Seven Months in Piura by Ev Marie Zeeb

I was 19 years old and was just about to finish school and like so many I had little idea what I wanted to do next. I did not want to study immediately and therefore I looked for an alternative. Driven by the stories of my friends and acquaintances who had tried it before, I decided I wanted to move abroad. My plan was to learn something about foreign countries and foreign living conditions. I also wanted to support a social organization, help people who needed help and to support a good cause. After a long search, I found through the help of the German organization “Initiative Überleben” (Initiative to Survive) a contact in the children’s home “Hogar Anita Goulden” in Piura, Peru. I applied as a volunteer and was lucky to get the chance to work there. So, four weeks after finishing school, I packed my bags and started from Stuttgart airport to my Peru “adventure”. After a 16 hour flight and exhausted, I arrived in Piura, looking forward to my time in Peru. Since I had very little information about the house and the inhabitants, I did not know exactly what I had to expect from my new home for the next 7 months. So far I only knew that the children ́s home is situated in Piura, a city in the north-west of Peru, near the sea, and that it is a home for handicapped children with infantile cerebral palsy and other conditions.

During the taxi ride from the airport to my final destination, I was thrilled with the impressions of South America – a completely new world. I also was very excited (despite my tiredness). Of course there were concerns about whether I would be able to communicate well, but I was excited about how many children I would meet, how I could make myself understood, how much the degree of disability would be and how I would be able to cope with it all. For me it was also the first time that I was alone on my own in a completely foreign country, and did not really know what to expect or how I would be received. All my doubts and fears had been entirely in vain. At the Hogar I was greeted warmly and with open arms by both the staff and the children. That was very pleasant. Nevertheless the first hurdles were my limited Spanish skills. After that long flight, I did not immediately understand all the people and all their friendly speeches. But luckily this changed very quickly after a few days because my new friends helped me to understand the new language.

In the children’s home there are 18 handicapped people. Conversation with these children takes place on a completely different level. Due to the fact that some of the children cannot speak, I had to learn very quickly to converse with them through facial expressions and gestures. We played games or jigsaw, painted or tinkered. We chatted, sang and danced together. After the first weeks of acclimatization, the manager of the Hogar assigned me my duties in the daily work ow with the children. My day started at 7:00 am with preparing breakfast for me and the children and ended at 8:00 pm with bringing the children to bed. Since only a few of the children were able to eat on their own, I had to assist them to eat. I further helped the children after bathing, combing and braiding hair, and generally caring for the children. I assisted (and even was allowed to do it sometimes on my own responsibility) in physiotherapy and occupational therapy, including painting and crafting. In addition I had to help with the housekeeping, had to make beds, help with the laundry and also with the cooking.

Sometimes we made excursions with the children by bus. Especially I remember two trips: one to the beach, the other to a plantation. In February we also had the opportunity to travel with the handicapped people to a nearby rehabilitation and physiotherapy centre. There we did movement therapy in the water, and had a lot of fun together. Unfortunately not all children were allowed to enter the swimming pool because of their medical problems. For me it was really impressive how much the physiotherapy helps those children. In these seven months I noticed many changes of the children ́s movement and trained with them learning to crawl, to stand up or to walk smaller distances on their own. I was really surprised by the working conditions the staff of the home has to work with. Perhaps spoiled by the European standard of living, I was also surprised as I saw, for example, how the laundry had to be done every day, much of it by hand. I was able to share the experience, as I had to wash my own laundry by hand and I became aware of what hard work and effort the laundry maid had to perform every single day.

For me it was the occasion to launch an appeal to my family and friends in Germany and to collect money for a washing machine. After all of them had supported my project, I bought in December, together with the hostel management under Senora Fabiola, a washing machine. The donation of my friends was not completely needed for buying the washing machine. Therefore I want to utilize the remaining amount for another idea. As I have mentioned before physiotherapy and especially water therapy helps my handicapped friends a lot to regain at least a little mobility and additionally makes a lot of fun. My plan is to buy some special swimming wear for people with incontinence to allow them to join the water therapy together with the rest of the group. In conclusion, I want to state that the time at the Hogar was probably the best time in my life so far. It left a huge impression on me and I gained experiences that I wouldn’t want to have missed under any circumstances. It is safe to say that not just the staff members, but also especially the children, became my friends. Despite the fact that life seems to be extremely hard - especially compared to our European prosperity - all of them tell their own story. They regard themselves as being together as a large family, a unit. I am proud that they integrated me into their family and that I was received so warmly. Thank you “Hogar Anita Goulden” for this special time in your community. Thank you for these special seven months in Piura, and thank you for these great moments with every one of your children.

'Open Leaves', Short stories by Rita Crossley - A Staunch Supporter of the Trust

Rita Crossley says: Last year I decided, after much persuasion from my family and friends, to self-publish a book of some of my short stories. The ones I chose range in length from around 2,000 words to just over 100. Several of the stories in the book tell of a character’s loss and the journey to find a new way forward. Others are based on my own childhood and one or two are there to amuse the reader. The settings range from the 1950s to the present day. I decided on the title after choosing the book cover which depicts open leaves. It made me think of the other definition of leaves – pages in a book – and how these are open when it is read. From the start of this project, I wanted to use it as a means of raising money for the Trust. “Open Leaves” is available from Plackitt & Booth Booksellers:
87c Clifton Street
Lytham, Lancashire, FY8 5ER
Tel: 01253 796958
Email: info@plackittandbooth.co.uka> Website: www.plackittandbooth.co.uk and is on sale at the modest price of £4.99 plus P&P of which 60% will be donated to the Trust. For more information see my website: www.ritacrossley.co.uk An ideal gift that will help support the work of the Trust.

Trini's Birthday

Trini's Birthday

One of the Home’s most popular and oldest residents, Trini, recently celebrated her 29th birthday. The story of this young woman is one that really does emphasise the important role that the Hogar Anita Goulden has played in the lives of so many people down through the years. Trini was born with profound disabilities, and either unable (or unwilling) to care for her, she was abandoned as a baby by her mother on the doorstep of the Home in 1986. Anita Goulden quite naturally took her in and she was cared for by the staff and over time it became apparent just how severe Trini’s disabilities were. Unable to speak, move or feed herself, with every one of her limbs contorted to some degree, she has lived her entire life in a chair or on a bed. She has to be lifted and carried every time she needs to move. All aspects of her life are totally dependent on the help of others. As if her life were not difficult enough, at times she has had to undergo traumatic medical procedures, including treatment for cancer, but still Trini continues to fight on through so many obstacles and continues to have the respect and love of those associated with the Home. Until recently Trini officially did not exist, as due to the way she was found on the doorstep, there were no papers connected to her. Despite the Home’s best efforts over many years, they could not get this situation resolved. This made the task of getting medical assistance for her even more difficult in a very bureaucratic country like Peru. Thankfully though, and with great credit to the tireless efforts of several of the Hogar Anita Goulden supporters, earlier this year Trini finally received her official identification number and is now a recognised and registered citizen of her country. Trini’s story is incredible on so many levels, and it is testimony to her own resilience and the work of the staff in the Home that she is still warming the hearts of so many who come into the Hogar Anita Goulden.

The Penarth (Vale of Glamorgan) Christmas Tree Festival 2015

We are delighted to have been invited to exhibit a Christmas Tree in the name of the Anita Goulden Trust which has been chosen as one of the three beneficiaries from the proceeds this year. Our Peruvian Christmas Tree will be on display in the festival at St Augustine’s Church, Penarth on 5th/6th December. If any of you live nearby, do please come along and support us all. Sallie and Dick Morgan.

Financial Report by David Thomas

In line with best practise for charities, the Anita Goulden Trustees have adopted a formal Reserves Policy to guide their financial management of the Trust. Typically, charities adopt a reserves policy to ensure that donations are being applied for the purpose for which they were given and are not accumulated in excessive reserves. This is indeed one aim of the Anita Goulden Trust’s policy, but the greater concern is to ensure that financial reserves do not fall too low. The Trust must be able to give reasonable assurance to the committee running the Home in Piura that funding will be available at least for the next several years. This is of critical importance since the Trust is essentially their only source of the cash they need to pay salaries and purchase treatment for the residents and “out- patients” and the consequences of an interruption of our funding would be dire. There are few or no alternative providers of the care, and especially residential care, that the Home offers and it is the only home that some of the residents have ever known. Because we need to look to the longer term, we make and regularly update a 10-year forecast of expected donations and operating costs of the Home, rather than focussing simply on the financial reserves currently held by the Trust. As can be imagined, our task is greatly facilitated by the predictability of donations made by standing order, which are especially valuable to us. The reality is that donations have not kept pace with the costs of the Home. We have been greatly helped by legacies, for which we are extremely grateful but, nevertheless, reserves have been declining. In response to this we have had to ask the committee in Piura who, like us are all unpaid volunteers, to take action to reduce costs. They have done this very successfully, mostly by raising donations of food and other supplies needed by the Home. A point is being reached where there is not much more that they can achieve by this route and they must look to the Trust to maintain its support in cash funding. Your donations are of vital importance to the Home and the young people it serves and we are deeply grateful for your continued support.

The Chilalo Bird

This compilation of memories of and tributes to Anita has sold very well indeed and the feedback has been excellent. However, there are still some copies left so do send off for one - it would make a good Christmas present. £11 includes postage.

Gift Aid and Wills

You can download a form from our website very easily. You can also send a donation via the website through our new system called Charity Checkout. Do please use this method of sending donations as it is so easy. We also benefit greatly from legacies so do consider mentioning the Trust when you make or update your Will.