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What A Year...

This is the update we provided our incredible sponsors at the end of 2021 and goes some way to reveal all that's happened since we arrived into a snowy Moldova on the 17th February 2021.

Pohrebeni when we arrived on the morning of the 17th February 2021


We wanted to make an impact


When we arrived, all we wanted to do was make an impact and help change the lives of a few children. Little did we realise what was about to happen and how many lives, with your phenomenal help and support, we were going to reach.


We have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of love for orphans, widows and families, who face incredible hardship with salaries here being on average a crippling £150 per month.


We are encountering desperation everywhere we look and your continued support means we can reach even more people and plan to amplify our efforts into the new year.


We are now supporting more orphans than we ever thought possible, as well as providing assistance to more than 50 children’s homes, an orphan crisis centre, a centre for victims of abuse, as well as countless families suffering starvation. And we’ve only just scratched the surface.

Above is one of the first families we started to help


So, what have we got planned for 2022


If you follow us on Social Media, you understand everything we've done over the last 11 months and so the following isn't to go over all that's happened, but to give insight into all that we have planned.


Ambassador Programme


The sheer scale of our operation demands we create robust structures to ensure we seize every opportunity to impact lives. Fundraising is key to that strategy and we want to create an Ambassador Programme that identifies those that can carry our message and the work we do even further.


Naturally those already involved make the perfect candidates and we would ask you to share the work we do with your friends, families, employers, employees, work colleagues, school friends, in fact, with anyone who will listen.


We are working on exciting ways in which to acknowledge and reward your kind efforts, with exclusive Ambassador benefits and will announce what those are in due course.

Together #WeAreHope4


Sponsor Seminars and Newsletters

As suggested, we want to get better at communicating and whilst many of you have told us you’d rather we deliver your support than take time out to communicate, we none the less want to honour your trust by letting you know what’s going on more regularly.


The newsletter will obviously help, but what we plan to do, is create regular (perhaps quarterly to begin with) seminars via Zoom where we can verbally let you know what’s going on and give opportunity for questions.


This will give you a greater sense of the scale of operations and the true impact we are all making together.

Corporate Social Responsibility


In addition to the existing ways in which people can get involved, we are also going to invite organisations to send their marketing teams for a week in the life of. Every company has a CSR statement and my challenge to business is, is it created in the marketing department or the Board Room?


Like sustainability, all too often businesses write these statements as a box ticking exercise, without any true commitment to engender change. We want to challenge this by inviting business to join us and walk in our shoes for a week and then to return home to write their CSR statement. Our inclination is, that it will take on a whole new life and will perhaps represent real and tangible change.

Human Trafficking

It has long been our plan to scale operations around human trafficking, with Moldova the European hub for sex and modern day slavery. We recognise there are NGOs better equipped than us to create far reaching change and will soon be announcing plans to collaborate with one of the world’s leading anti-trafficking charities, representing them in Moldova, Romania and Transnistria.


This sees us already making arrangements to address the Boarder Control Police in Moldova, Romania, Transnistria and Ukraine and sees our influence growing internationally. Whilst I want to, it is too soon to announce who that partner will be, but you will be the first to know when it happens.

Pen-Pals


Following a fundraising and awareness trip to the USA in October, we returned not only with some incredibly exciting partners, but with an initiative that will utterly transform the landscape here in Moldova and beyond. After visiting the school which my sister's children attend, we came up with our Operation Pen-Pal. By getting children in the USA and UK to write to orphans in Moldova, Transnistria and Gagauzia, we will create access to potentially 10’s of thousands of parents, willing to sponsor children.


Again, we’d like you to talk about it and where possible, introduce us to Head Teachers in your area. There is no limit to how many children can get involved and we are working on the infrastructure here to cope with what we hope will be thousands of children writing to orphans.


To make this a reality, we need computers and printers and will be reaching out to the likes of Epson and HP for their support; if you have any contacts you’d be happy to share, please get in touch at help@hope4.love.

Grass Roots Sports

Working with Koi Sports, a professional business networking group based in the UK, we have secured funding, from in particular Vanessa Challes of Tiger Law and Beverly Sankey of Wellness and Finance, to fund an initiative here in Moldova to use football to reach remote and impoverished communities. This is just the beginning with an additional 12 teams to sponsor, with each team bearing the logo of the business supporting them.


Koi Sports have recently announced Reach My Street as their European Charity of the Year, which will carry even greater relevance as Koi launches across Europe.

Special Projects


We come across incredible poverty all the time, with many houses, home to large families, likely to be condemned if they existed in the UK. The majority of these houses require urgent repair, with none benefiting from indoor bathrooms or washing facilities.


We want to create an international workforce consisting builders, plumber and electricians capable of parachuting in to conduct critical work to make homes safe. This itself will require substantial funding, much of which will be paid for through CSR programmes.

Business as a Mission


This month we will be incorporating our first business in Moldova. With customers already in place, we will start to manufacture hand-made paper. It has long been our intention to use business as a means to address internal challenges and to become a major employer in the region. But, typical of Reach My Street, we will do things a little differently. Most international companies locate their businesses to places like Moldova, to take advantage of the cheap labour.


This mentality is what is damaging the region and what is fuelling the devastating economic migration. Because the national average salary is just £150 , people are forced to leave the country to find employment elsewhere, leaving behind children who ultimately find their way into the system.


This simply isn’t sustainable and we plan to be part of the solution. Reach My Street will pay higher than average salaries with a commitment to increase them as our various products and companies become successful, ensuring the workers become the beneficiaries of success and not the Directors. This will ensure we have a highly motivated and committed workforce and create a real culture for change.

Impact Investment


Additionally, we have already identified a number of opportunities to support local enterprise, like for example, Hope and Health, who look after adults with mental and physical disabilities. What sets Hope and Health apart, is they manufacture organic soap, growing its own ingredients, for the purpose of selling them to be self sustaining.


The problem is, no one in Moldova can afford this modestly priced, yet premium product and so, despite having an incredible product, no one wants to buy it. This is where we step in and using our international contacts, we want to make the product available to international retailers, who can satisfy their CSR commitments, whilst making a profit and supporting this extraordinary charity.


Impact Investment will give those involved a substantial return, whilst supporting the local environment and its people, delivering a critical service to those in greatest need.

Registered NGO in Moldova


Being a UK registered CIC/NGO offers its own challenges and often means we face unnecessary import duties that domestic NGO’s don’t. With this in mind we will be registering our Moldovan NGO at the same time as our business, giving us more scope and leverage within the Moldovan boarders.


Reach My Street and Government


Our influence within Moldova keeps increasing and many of you are aware we recently appeared on national television. This has thrown our work under the spotlight and has attracted the attention of government. There is still a lot of work to do here, but what it means, is Reach My Street will enjoy the backing and support of government departments. For those who missed it, our appearance is here.

Winter in Moldova


Winters in Moldova are incredibly harsh, with temperatures plummeting to as low as -30 degrees C. We have already fallen victim to these conditions, with our Dacia Lodgy, the amazing gift of US couple Brett and Gerrie Riley, unable to cope with the regular snow fall here and which has meant we have already been stranded.


To this end, we have been encouraged to set up a Go Fund Me to raise sufficient funds to source a 4x4 which will be better equipped to enable us to still reach remote communities despite the snow. We would be incredibly grateful if you could share this with your friend, families, churches and contacts and see if we can raise enough money without having to trade in our Dacia. GoFundMe - Manage Campaign

Our car stuck in the snow


Reach My Street become Hope4


Whilst Reach My Street has continued to grow in both popularity and effectiveness, the name doesn’t translate too well internationally and so, it is our decision to rebrand to Hope4. The new name provides us with incredible scope to expand operations, representing Hope4 orphans, victims (of trafficking and domestic and sexual abuse), families, students, businesses and nations.


Also, it recognises the reality that Zoe and I aren’t alone and that we simply head up an army of ordinary people, doing extraordinary things. This means that together #WeAreHope4


Reach My Street will continue in the UK and is head up by Janet Josiah, founder of our sister charity The Potters Hands. Janet has herself incredible plans to build the brand and continue the work she started in The Potters Hands, making a difference to lives across Hampshire and beyond.

We are genuinely excited to see what 2022 has in store and to build on what was an extraordinary 2021. But, this is not a solo mission and for us, the real heroes are the people who equip us to do what we do; the real heroes are you!!

For more information, please either visit our web site www.hope4.love or email us at help@hope4.love or to donate, please head over to www.hope4.love/donate

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