Marsha Winsryg

is creating opportunities for Zambian children with disabilities.

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Elephant Level
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$1
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$1 a month: Every single dollar goes to aid. Receive the gratitude, and the knowledge that you are really helping disabled kids and families in Africa. No donation is too small. Thank you!
Quilt Level
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$5
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$5 a month: Every single dollar goes to aid. Receive the gratitude, and the knowledge that you are really helping disabled kids and families in Africa. No donation is too small. Thank you!

Cheetah Level
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$10
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$10 a month: Every single dollar goes to aid. Receive the gratitude, and the knowledge that you are really helping disabled kids and families in Africa. No donation is too small. Thank you!

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About

Waging Peace in Zambia

Hello, I am Marsha Winsryg.

The first half of my life followed a conventional scenario, school, more school until my mid-20s when I was forced to take a hard left to accommodate my first baby, unscheduled, but beloved. When that baby grew up she led me to Africa in 1996, and my life took another turn.

In 1999 we traveled from Dar es Salaam in Tanzania to the Great Zimbabwe Ruins in Zimbabwe stopping at the craft market at Victoria Falls on the way. I bought a wooden carving and was talked into selling some of the wooden crafts in the States. The craftspeople were pretty hard up.

Only seven miles away from the struggling craftsmen at the Falls, I found the Mama Bakhita Home for children with disabilities in Livingstone, Zambia. I started sending them the profits from the craft sales because I wanted to help a local charity that knew what was needed in the community. And a lot was needed. HIV/AIDS had affected every family.

That was twenty years ago. 

I named my non-profit the AACDP: the African Artists Community Development Project. And it has become just that, community development bringing income to crafts people and families with disabled children, aiding the special needs school that serves them, and helping a handful of young people get an education.

And then… 
Each year when I visited the Mama Bakhita Center I wondered how to help the mothers of those kids. These strong women were not only the poorest people I had ever known, but they had handicapped children that needed special care. We tried making shopping bags from recycled plastic, bath mats from tailors’ scraps, and finally hit gold in 2011, when we designed a doll that could be made entirely by hand and The Zambezi Doll Company was born: an income-generating business for women who do not have any other opportunities to support their families.

Over the years I met people desperate for education. Nothing else offers hope for these families more than education and when asked I couldn’t refuse. Grade school costs $60 to $80 dollars a term, university about $800. These were families that I knew. It meant opportunity (and respect) and the costs seemed doable.

For all these years it has been doable. A little goes a long way in Africa.


But I can no longer rely only on craft sales. So, I’m asking you to join in with a monthly pledge. Help me provide opportunity in a place where there is so little.

Your tax-deductible contributions are going to people I know. We communicate throughout the year via email and I visit each winter to see how they are doing. When I tell them about this Patreon campaign some of them will shed tears that people in the fabulous USA would care about them.

The AACDP has no middleman, no advertising budget…it’s basically just me…and, hopefully, you.

Please take a minute to set up an automatic monthly AACDP donation and activate some very personal and very powerful global impact. I call it “low-end philanthropy”, because even us “thousandaires” are in the top 5% worldwide and can share a bit of our wealth.

You will see what can be done with your support because I will report to you regularly. Rather than the typical Pantheon reward system that takes time and resources away from my efforts, I will be sharing stories of success and struggle here with you monthly.

These are hard times around the globe, but your gift brings genuine hope to fellow humans who are vulnerable, walking that tightrope of survival.

Thank you for your help,

Marsha Winsryg
Director
African Artists' Community Development Project

Your funds will go to:
  • HEALTH CARE: Supporting the Mama Bakhita School which provides education, training and physical therapy for children with limited motor functions and other issues, enabling them to grow stronger and to gain confidence.                              (ABOVE: Emily Pheri, physiotherapist at the Mama Bakhita Cheshire Home working with Gavin.)


  • INCOME GENERATING PROJECTS: Strengthening the Zambezi Doll Collective by creating an on-line business, taking orders and shipping internationally. (ABOVE: Zambezi Doll makers creating Zambezi Dolls.)


  • EDUCATION: Providing tuition for ambitious students so that they can get the education and credentials that will change their abilities to generate income. (ABOVE: Zimeh Benjamin, who graduated from university in medical engineering in 2015 and started a small ultrasound clinic for poor women.)

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