I have the great pleasure of being the Senior Programme Manager at Reignite Action for Development for the last year. During this time we have achieved a number of significant milestones that I wish to share with you as we begin this New Year.
Our Ngong project despite coming to its end in May continues to make a tremendous difference to thousands of people on a daily basis, as reported on our website and field reports. This success has been acknowledged by our partners and other organisations that look to learn from us.
But the best manifestation of our success is the improvement of the standards of living of Bambui population who once again enjoyed the joys of fresh corn for Christmas and new income streams from extra agricultural sales.
Over the past twelve months, the political and social crisis in the Anglophone regions of Cameroon had a huge impact on our country office activities and projects. The sources and diversity of income have decreased which made us realign our strategy for 2018.
Back to London, we look forward to strengthening and developing relationships with donors and volunteers to enable us to continue and increase the good work we are doing with our partners in Bambui, replicate and scale up our model of action in Cameroon and beyond.
Our first working station in London is now based in Dek Catford, in the Old Town Hall and we look forward to being part of a strong groundswell movement for positive change in the borough of Lewisham.
Mariana Matoso, our CEO, has decided to dedicate more of her time to her professional challenge after six intense years with Reignite Action for Development. We are all very grateful to Mariana for everything she has done for the charity. Her expertise, dedication and commitment have been behind the charity’s transformation from its formative years into a dynamic and increasingly effective young organisation, helping to improve the lives thousands of people each year. We wish Mariana every success in her future.
I am also delighted that the Board of Trustees has been further strengthened with the appointment of one new Trustee – Charles Schulze – during the course of the last several months, which adds to RAD’s range of skills and knowledge from various sectors.
Charles is a consultant with broad experience and success in management consultancy and aid intervention oversight, spanning private client work, development and humanitarian projects, and institutional work in a range of international contexts. Charles’ qualifications and experience span across a range of focus areas, with specific experience and expertise in education, training, FSL, and health programming.
2018 & beyond
I am delighted to announce that Abdelfatah Ibrahim, our Deputy CEO, finalized Reignite 2017-2021 Strategic Plan Ambition 2021 and Diana Matoso, our Communications consultant, prepared a PR & Media Strategy 2018 and we’re now launching a new website and a series of online initiatives that we hope will raise awareness for the development areas and support for our projects.
Reignite envisions a worldwide connection of people and knowledge as a way of breaking the cycle of poverty and empowering communities to improve livelihoods for sustainable development. Being the Internet a great way to make information available to a greater number of people simultaneously in different places, we want to invest in Reignite’s online presence, contents and participation.
Think Globally, act locally. We want to join forces worldwide to learn and apply in our local projects as we aim to extend our work to support other local communities in Africa and beyond. The virtual world is currently the most efficient way to compile and share valuable information to manifest our vision and therefore a tool we aim to better develop in order to reach and empower more communities.
We shall be present in Mega Volunteering Market Place organized by VAL [Voluntary Action Lewisham]. This event will be a great opportunity to meet some of our team and volunteers who’ve been working in Cameroon and London and we hope to expand our volunteer network.
Finally, I would like to thank our Volunteers, our Board of Trustees, our Chairman, our small team in London and Bambui for their dedication and hard work over the past year as well as our growing number of supporters – both donors and volunteers – on whose contributions RAD relies on its ability to help even more communities.
Despite being in a volunteer role now, my heart asks me to carry on involved with Reignite Action for Development.
I realize that I am one of the foundation stones of the charity, supporting its growth and projecting it for the future. Together we make action, history and change happen, for the benefit of the most vulnerable.
I look forward to another busy and productive year ahead and wish you all a very happy New Year.
With very best wishes,
Teresa de Sousa
Senior Programme Manager (Volunteer)