OUR LATEST NEWS

As many of you will know, thanks to the INCREDIBLE generosity of Land Securities, MAma B has been able to fund our projects for the last two and a half  through the income generated by the Mama Biashara SHop in W 12 Shopping and Leisure, on Shepherd's Bush Green.

It has been an amazing, wonderful time. A month or so ago, the unit MAma B had been occupying was rented by the Lahore Kebab House (great food, btw) and MAma B has been homeless.  We have just found out we will be homeless for another month or so - but the good news is that Land Securities (who get NOTHING in return!!) are going to let us have another unit in the same Shopping Centre just as soon as the legalities are sorted out.  We are so greateful to GAvin Waller - the centre manager - and the wonderful Land Securities.

Until then you can contact me (Copstick) on 0780 350 7269   or email me on copstick@bobbysgirl.co.uk

And great things happen, even while we are homeless !

We have had a wholly unexpected and absolutely wonderful donation of £1000 from Angus Whyte up in Scotland, and the Father of Mama Biashara (aka Robert Copstick) has sent £500 to help with the costs of educating MAma B's five strong adopted family out in Ruai. That £500 will educate all five of them for a whole year, btw. Check out Ceder's Progressive Academy in Ruai !

Also a wonderful company called HTC Health, out in Watford have donated 10,000 cod liver oil capsules and 10,000 high strength multivits and minerals. Make no mistake, people, these will save lives. Many many lives. Sometimes that is all that is needed.  Watch this space for news of the small miracles that cod liver oil and multivitamins can do for people as needy as the ones Mama B works with. THANK YOU HTC

 

 

 

 

 

 

Donations

Over the past few months some amazing things have happened for Mama Biashara. We have had incredibly generous donations from people - friends and relations - meaning that the whole level on which Mama Biashara can help is lifted.

We have also sent in our first year's accounts. This is a Big Scary Step for a tiny charity like Mama B. It was made possible by the endless hard work of Zetta Thomelin (our vice chair) and the incredible generosity and goodwill of Harry Kemp of Kemps Accountants.  Anyone needing a charming, helpful, seriously experienced accountant should try Kemps.

We have also gained some faaaabulous new friends in BA.  Through them BA is giving us free excess baggage on our flights. This is a huge, huge thing for us. On both legs of the journey.  And this time (18th January) will mean that we can take out very necessary medication to help with the many problems that accompany the severe flooding that has occurred in Kenya now.

So thank you to all our helpers and supporters.  We need you. And we value you. And we won't forget how much you are helping us

Donating to Mama Biashara

We are very aware that we have been a little hard to donate to !   But now with the help of BT and their mydonate page you can now donate if you want to, when you want to, as much or as little as you want to.  Just go to btmydonate and, when asked what charity you want to donate to, type Mama Biashara in the box. You will be redirected to Mama Biashara's page where there is a 'Donate Now' button.   BT take much less from the charities on behalf of which they collect than other online donating sites like JustGiving.  So we are going with them for the time being.

Farewell to Virgin Atlantic and Hello to British Airways

Virgin Atlantic have been an incredible support to MAma BIashara for many years - we have enjoyed free excess baggage from them for the past three years.  In September they stopped flying to Nairobi and Mama Biashara took to the air with British Airways. And it was a glorious experience.  I even learned a little MAndarin on one of the apps on their entertainment package !  Best of all the wonderful cabin staff collected all the leftover baby food and Pampers for me to take into Nairobi.  When MAma B's vice chair Zetta Thomelin follwed me out a week later, she met a wonderful woman called Margaret McGahon who has already managed, with the help of Laura Phillips, to get free excess baggage for MAma B on all our British Airways flights. This is a huge huge huge thing to do.  On the way out to Kenya it means we can take medicines, baby milk (which is SOOO much heavier than you might think), stuff to help with the setting up of businesses (anything electronic is twice the price in Kenya that it is here), condoms, sanitary pads (also ludicrously expensive in Kenya, meaning that girls just drop out of school for up to ten days each month) and school equipment llike pencils and pens. On the way back it means that we can bring all the gorgousness we sell in the4 MAma B Emporium, W12 Shoppingand Leisure, Shepherds Bush (NOT WESTFIELD). And that means a huge boost for all the craftspeople and self help groups that make the things we sell as well as giving us the wherewithal to take the profit and use it to set our women (and, increasingly, men) up in the small businesses that keep them from falling into the 'abyss' of homelessness, pennilessness, foodlessness and hopelessness.  All that and the inflight food is great too !!!  THANK YOU MAGGIE, LAURA AND BRITISH AIRWAYS. 

 

Kucha Kool

Mama B's latest venture, piloted in Nairobi and now hitting the streets in Kisumu.  Kucha is the Swahili word for fingernail and so ... Cool Nails. We are working with commercial sex workers who want to get off the street and out of the bars. Utilising skills they already have ... like nail care ... Mama B sets each girl up with a kit comprising a dozen nail varnishes, a French Manicure Kit, buffers, orange sticks, emery boards, cuticle gel, varnish remover and hand cream and enough money to cover her first week's travel.  The girls then take their kit out and around the markets, shops and bars offering impromptu manicures at your place of work.  Our pilot business made our Kucha Kool Girl an average of 1500 ksh each day - three times what she made as a sex worker.  And the cost of these new lives for our girls ?  Around £12.00.

We are finally legal !

After a long ... long ... long wait, Mama Biashara has finally got full Charitable Status. We are a registered charity, SC042262. This means ... well, a load of stuff. We are now eligible for Gift Aid - meaning that for every £1 donated, we get an extra 25p.  Which means we can do 25% more work, help 25% more people, start 25% more businesses.

I suppose now would be the time to introduce our Board of Trustees ... pix will come later

Geoff Copstick is my brother, a bit of a financial whizz, but more importantly a great bloke. He is currently building his own house in New Zealand, complete with solar power. He is also a farmer and has all manner of practical skills that will be of help to the work in Kenya.

Zeta Thomelin is CEO of Children With AIDS Charity and a fairly extraordinary human being. She is also VERY good at all the formal, legal stuff that will keep Mama B in line with the rules and regs, is a formidable fundraiser and has better connections than high speed broadband. We are lucky to have her

Simon Walker is a former TV Producer of note, turned luxury landlord. Simon and his wife run Your Nice Apartment - acompany offering just what they say they do, in Nice and,  soon, in London too. Simon spent some time in Kenya with MAma B in January this year - pix will soon be available here on the site and can be seen now by logging onto www.yourniceapartment.com  

Bev James is former Services manager with CWAC and is currently spreading the Mama B word in Birmingham.

 

So now it is onwards and upwards. To say nothing of outwards.

Check out our new projects on the Projects pages -  and keep checking !  There will be no stopping us now.

Gallagher Securities

A knight in shining, electrified armour!

As they are wont to say, there is good news and there is bad news on the DECIEP front.

As you know, Felista Kibe has been feeding and caring for orphans and abandoned and vulnerable children in the slums of Nairobi for more than 10 years.

For the past 3, CWAC (Children With AIDS Charity) has been sending a monthly contribution to her work to cover food and rent. In August that contribution was halved.

And now – at one month’s notice, the contribution has been stopped altogether.

This, as you can imagine, is a crushing blow to Felista and the children.

As of this month, DECIEP, and the 60 children, have been thrown out of the property they were occupying.

However, at just the right time, Gallagher Securities, a company based in New Zealand, but operating across the globe, has come in to help.

Gallagher Securities not only make and sell, but invented electric fencing.

They are generally acknowledged to be the best in the world at it.

In helping the children of DECIEP at this time they have shown that they really do know the importance of ‘security’.

Gallagher have helped in three ways: they have generously donated almost £3000 which was used in the building of a new home for the children. The sixty happy, relieved young orphans moved in last week.

Gallagher have not only made the building of the home possible, but are also doing what they do best of all – making it secure!

They have offered to supply and install a state of the art fencing system around the home, keeping the children safe.

As well as this, part of Gallagher’s funding was used to purchase and refurbish a pick up truck. This has been used to the full during the construction, and now that the home is built, will be used to transport and sell cabbages wholesale, helping to meet the future running costs of the home.

This is a wonderful thing to have done for these children, just because Gallagher wanted to help.

They have succeeded in making these children truly secure and Mama Biashara thanks them.

 

So… if you are feeling insecure… www.gallagher.com

Gallagher Securities saves DECIEP !!

As they are wont to say, there is good news and there is bad noews on the DECIEP front. As you know, Felista Kibe has been feeding and caring for orphans and abandoned and vulnerable children in the slums of Nairobi for more than 10 years. For the past 3, CWAC (Children With AIDS Charity) has been sending a monthly contribution to her work to cover food and rent. In August that contribution was halved.

And now – at one month’s notice, the contribution has been stopped altogether. This, as you can imagine, is a crushing blow to Felista and the children. However, at just the right time, Gallagher Securities, a company based in New Zealand, but operating across the globe, has come in with funding to buy, refurbish and equip a pick up truck for DECIEP. This will be used to sell water and, if Felista’s calculations are right, could make DECIEP almost entirely self sufficient ONCE they are out of their rental property and housed on the new land the project has bought on an interest free loan. Gallagher’s incredible generosity will allow for the truck to start work immediately. An unimaginable benefit to DECIEP.

Now what we need is £6000 to build a temporary home for the children on the new land before they are evicted from the rental property. Gallagher’s help will extend to the purchase of all the timbers needed for the construction. What we need is the rest. Could you help ? Would you help ?

If you wish to donate please contact copstick@mamabiashara.com