Dear Joanne and TIAS ARMS supporters,

Thank you very much for your wonderful news of funding. It has come at a time when I have been very stressed due to the fact that I am unable to meet the salaries/wages of the caregivers. During the winter months, my business has not provided sufficient income for me to provide for all the children’s needs and as a result I have not been able to meet the salaries/wages promised to the staff. Thank you to everyone at TIAS ARMS.

A special thanks to you, Joanne, for your untiring effort in creating awareness of this project. You are greatly loved by the children.

This grant will only be used to supplement the salaries/wages of caregivers employed on a permanent basis to care for the children. The majority of the children residing in the project are directly affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and your funds will therefore be used directly for their care.

The accommodation for the first five children in May 2005 consisted of a few doors nailed together, with black plastic as the roof. We now have a temporary wooden structure with a corrugated iron roof, this accommodates the larger boys at night and the smaller boys and girls sleep on the floor in the main building. This situation is not perfect, but it is better than sleeping on the streets and the children are warm and dry. There is stability, care, guidance, and education for the children at Gecko, factors that were erratic or non-existent in their lives prior to their coming to the Gecko Project.

Our plan is to build cabins for the children at the top end of the property to each accommodate 6 children and a caregiver/supervisor. The area will be fenced and structured with a play area, an education/homework area, eating area, a rainy weather entertainment area, storage and laundry areas.

Financing is desperately needed for a number of items, the main one being the structures required for the children’s needs. We feel this will come in time and with perseverance.

In the meantime, we will continue with improvements, slowly improving the situation as we can. The children do not complain about their present sleeping and bathing arrangements, however their lives would be much improved if proper structures with adequate sleeping and bathing facilities were available.

These are mischievous little children who still have a lot to learn, and it is only with your assistance and perseverance that we manage to give them the chance they need as vulnerable children in our community.

Jenny Uzzell
GECKO
Give Each Child Kindness and Orientation

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