In this issue, you'll find updates about our pilot program in Nyanyano, Ghana, our Youth Program in Seattle, Washington, and an introduction to our new program, "Girls in STEM." To date, we've raised approximately $45,000 from over 200 donors but we are still working hard to raise an additional $20,000 in 2015.
The Fieldhouse Project is committed to environmental and economic sustainability. Our approach to creating a lasting, self-sustaining set of resources and programs relies on four components: community ownership, revenue generation, environmental impact, and partnerships.
1. Community Ownership
Community ownership has been fundamental to this project from its inception: Nyanyano community elders donated the land, community members themselves molded the bricks, and, beginning in the spring of 2015, seven schools will contribute in making monthly payments to build emergency reserves. We’ve concentrated on working with the community rather than for the community, consulting schools and local partner organizations each step of the way. By soliciting input from a variety of its stakeholders, The Fieldhouse facility is an amalgamation of dreams realized and needs met. Participating schools and organizations will also sign a Leave No Trace Agreement which puts their skin, officially, in the game: each school inspects the facility prior to use, documenting damages and discrepancies. Schools found responsible for damage will be held financially accountable for repairs, incentivizing upkeep and making it truly a tool of its users.
2. Revenue generation
Revenue generation is key to financial independence. Each participating school will pay monthly dues that can be used for emergency repairs or future expansions. Advertisement and sponsorship opportunities around the soccer pitch may also provide revenue in the future.
3. Environmental Impact
Environmental sustainability is a primary focus of The Fieldhouse Project: the facility features a scalable solar electricity source. Panels on the roof charge multiple batteries and support all basic electricity needs. Additionally, The Fieldhouse was constructed using locally-sourced building materials wherever possible, further minimizing its carbon footprint as well as supporting the local economy.
Partnering with local organizations - ones with a history of impact and results - has been the key to our success thus far. Our partners’ local relationships and intimate knowledge of the developmental challenges facing the villages in Ghana have informed much of the design of The Fieldhouse. The issues we are tackling are enormous, so we’ve partnered with The Cheerful Hearts Foundation. Established in 2008, CHF promotes education, provides public health services, and combats child labor and trafficking in rural areas. Based in Ghana and run by Ghanaians, Cheerful Hearts works from the ground up on sustainable development strategies. They will manage a rehabilitation program for child laborers at The Fieldhouse, preparing one hundred children reenter the school system each year. Working with Cheerful Hearts, our other Ghanaian partners, and six local primary schools, we are creating the framework for The Fieldhouse and its place in Nyanyano.
Beginning April 10th, The Fieldhouse Project will compete for $10,000 in the Kind Causes competition. We'll need to get the most votes by April 30th to win.
We are seeking Campaign Ambassadors to represent us and help garner enough support to win by helping run events and by campaigning on social media. To sign up, fill out the form below and make sure you like The Fieldhouse Project on Facebook.
How do people vote?
Simple: by visiting http://causes.kindsnacks.com/cause/soccer-and-education-for-community-development/ or just typing in fieldhouseproject.org/vote any time starting April 10. No registration is needed to vote and you can vote up to 4 times.
- Must have strong familiarity with Facebook and/or other social media platforms.
- Must be willing to reach out to friends and family for support.
- Check in once per week for 15-20 minutes with a Fieldhouse team member. Schedule is flexible.
- Successful ambassadors will receive a letter of support or recommendation
- You'll feel good about supporting an important cause
- Great way to learn about marketing and develop social media skills
- Valuable experience that can help make your resume stand out, especially if we win.
- Network with others connected to this cause including the org team and the youth advisory board.
How will we use the $10k should we win?
- $5,000 to complete the construction of The Fieldhouse.
- $2,500 to provide an after school study period for students, facilitated by teachers and older students.
- $2,000 to provide sports equipment to young athletes involved in the program.
- $500 for an opening celebration and soccer tournament giving the community a chance to come together around the bright future of The Fieldhouse.
What is the Fieldhouse Project?
Part classroom, part community center, and part athletic complex, The Fieldhouse Project will be the home of a reintegration-to-education program for former child workers and a sports center shared by six local schools in Nyanyano, Ghana. We seek to engage youth in academics and in their community through teamwork and sport because we believe all children deserve the opportunity to learn and play. The Fieldhouse Project encourages students to flourish in their academic life through our unique soccer league that recognizes athletic achievement as well as academic and civic engagement off the field. Along side this, our partner, The Cheerful Hearts Foundation, will run the reintegration program in The Fieldhouse.
I'm writing on behalf of the Youth Advisory Council of The Fieldhouse Project. Our group was created in part to bring new ideas to raise funds and awareness about the Fieldhouse Project. The YAC comprises fifteen high school students from the Greater Seattle Area.
In April, we will be competing in the KIND bar competition. The KIND bar competition is a monthly competition where for-purpose organizations, such as the Fieldhouse Project, submit "causes" for everyone to vote on. The entry with most votes receives $10,000. We are reaching out to you in hopes that you would be willing to support us on this journey in this next month.
Should we win, we intend to use $5000 for construction costs; $2000 to purchase sports equipment (primarily from Alive and Kicking, Ghana), $2500 to support a new tutoring program at The Fieldhouse, and $500 for a grand opening celebration and miscellaneous start up costs.
Our goal is to pick up as much support as we can get. It is our hope that through social media and other outlets to help us spread the word and encourage people to support the Fieldhouse Project.
The competition begins April 10th, and we would really appreciate if you could encourage your friends, family, classmates, and colleagues to please vote for The Fieldhouse on the KIND bar website starting April 10th.
We will send you the link when it becomes available but when the competition starts, you can vote by visiting fieldhouseproject.org/vote which will send you to the official voting page.
Thank you so much for your time and we do hope you consider supporting us in our endeavors.
The Youth Advisory Council
The Fieldhouse Project