Looking back on a difficult but active year
We look back on a year in which a lot was not possible and not allowed, but in which a lot happened as well. What happened at ASAS?
A summary of a year of hard work.
In the months of January and February, it seemed like an ordinary year. During the summer, the children participated in activities organised by the municipality in Nego Quirido and in various activities at ASAS.
On 18 March, the first lockdown began. All activities were suspended. But a Plan B soon emerged. To minimise the negative impact of the pandemic, ASAS organised monthly actions to distribute food, hygiene and cleaning products and teaching materials. In addition, a digital diagnostic survey was conducted to start remote care and activities – via the internet. In order to maintain the connection and contact with the children and their families, ASAS established Whatsapp groups.
April, May and June
To keep in touch with the children and youngsters, the teachers made videos (with assignments and challenges): the first videos were sent out in May.
In this period, the first food/care-kit campaign took place. A group of families involved in ASAS received food, hygiene and cleaning items and educational material. In addition, they received masks, recipes, a game of Uno, chalks and craft supplies. The food/care-kit campaign lasted 4 months and was made possible by the donors of Power2Fly in cooperation with Wilde Ganzen.
There are all kinds of thematic activities, for example: an art week, a hockey week, a capoeira week … All normal weekly activities are ‘online’.
Posters of the thematic activities sent to the children as an announcement:
September and October
On 9 September, the Illustration Workshop for the Nas ASAS da Poesia project started. With a writer, the children and youngsters created and illustrated their own book. And it will be printed as well!
In addition, the toys and games chosen by children and adolescents during the food/care-kit campaign in June will be delivered. These ranged from a football to a doll and a car. The children were given these toys during the October Emergency-kits Operation.
The Life Project also started. The youngsters could tell about their future dreams and areas of interest. Based on this, guests were invited to the weekly video interviews.
ASAS continued with video calls a few times a week in small groups. There is also a new phase in the construction of the new building: the move is planned for the second half of 2021.
On 23 December, there was one last action of the year: Natal ASAS. With the help of Power2Fly, Christmas hampers were distributed to 67 families. About 100 children received toys. Thus ASAS closed 2020, a challenging and uncertain year, yet also with many special achievements. “We want to thank all those who in one way or another make ASAS continue to exist and help us to give children and young people a more just, dignified and secure childhood.”
Love from the ASAS family!
Cover of the book made with drawings by the kids
Overview of the distribution of the food/care-kits
Overview of the distribution of the food/care-kits
The pandemic and the experiences of employees
Fabiola, visual education
It was a difficult year !!! We were taken by surprise by the pandemic. From one day to the next we had to explore new possibilities and learn to keep in touch with the children and adolescents of ASAS. We needed patience and understanding that we could not control many things. It was essential to live in the moment. There was joy and sorrow, celebration and loneliness.
Edina, nature and environment
It has been a difficult and frustrating year and I hope this will change soon. When I look at the photos of our classes, working in the earth, my heart trembles with happiness. I am full of plans for our future own space, where we can plant our dreams.
Video conversations between teachers and children
Michele, school assistant
It was a difficult but instructive year for all parties. There was fear and uncertainty but also enormous commitment from all sides.
Despite the pandemic and the enormous difficulties it brought in 2020, I am grateful that ASAS made it possible for me to keep my salary. Thank God this allowed me to support my family in an honourable way. The social distance we had to keep from the children has been for the greater good but I hope it will soon be over.
Sommer, School Assistant
In 2020, we had to deal with each other in new ways, which caused many concerns. For example, about the participation in our activities and the interaction with the children. Fewer children were able to keep in touch with us because they did not have access to a telephone. It was also much more difficult to get a good interaction. But I believe that the children who did participate enjoyed it and that we managed to do a good job within the possibilities that we had. We also had the opportunity to learn more about the behaviour of the families. This made the importance of ASAS even more clear.
We missed the interaction with the children and colleagues very much and it turned out that the virtual alternatives we used were unsatisfactory. You miss practising and talking together. The year is now fortunately over and I hope that soon we will be able to be together again.
We started with weekly video instructions and that was challenging to do well and constructively. The problem was that there was no feedback and no checking whether the children had actually watched and done it. Therefore, we challenged them to record exercises on video or make pictures or drawings of them. When we felt that we still did not have enough interaction, we started to have video conversations with specific small groups of children, also guided by the social worker. We did not reach all the children but we did reach a very large group. Towards the end of the year, participation decreased because the children had a lot of homework from school and they were ready for a holiday. It was a challenging year, but fortunately I learned a lot myself as a person and as an educator.
presents for the children and happy with their new paint colours
2020 was a very intense year for ASAS as an institution. The former coordinator left due to health problems in January and I was still working as a theatre teacher and fundraiser. The board then took over various tasks from her until I took over as coordinator in May.
In March, the activities of ASAS ceased and other forms of contact with the children and their families had to be found. It was a year of hard work, fear and uncertainty. It was difficult to plan and operationalise at a time when, due to the pandemic, the information was different every day. Unfortunately, our government did little to protect and guide the people. Fortunately, all our dedication and stress resulted in us being able to maintain a good relationship and communication with stakeholders. We have been able to organise virtual classes and events and do different outreach activities. The team has also been able to attend virtual trainings and organise institutional issues. We hope that 2021 will be a more stable and peaceful year so that, with health and safety, we can improve the lives of those who are with us and make a positive impact.
Aline, social worker
The challenges posed by the pandemic were even greater for those working in the social field with the most disadvantaged people. How can we stay in touch and how can we best help them? This group in particular faced many additional financial difficulties as they lost their jobs or were no longer able to be self-employed. This meant that families no longer had any income at all. After my maternity leave, I returned to ASAS in the middle of this pandemic reality. Fortunately, during my leave, my replacement and the team had already done a great job in maintaining contact with the families and identifying their needs. Through telephone and video calls, I continued their work and provided social assistance. Sometimes it is necessary to accompany women when they are trying to break out of a situation of domestic violence, and adjustments and solutions were also sought in cases of child neglect. In addition, with the contribution of various partners (including very significant Power2Fly), we were able to provide ASAS families with a monthly kits of food, hygiene and cleaning materials, educational materials and toys. This was specifically tailored to both children and adolescents.
New location: The first containers have arrived!
Four wonderful donations at the beginning of the year:
- A donor who wanted to contribute to something specific and who loved the plan of the vegetable garden at the new location. So we get the construction of the vegetable garden, the necessary materials to “plant” for a year and the salary for the teacher for a year!
- A company allowed the employees to pitch for a good cause. The employees then drew up a top-3 based on this pitch. Power2Fly was one of them! Top
- A foundation with whom we were also in discussion in 2017 has continued to follow us over the years. On the basis of this they have now made an amazing donation. Fantastic!
- A very nice, large contribution to the construction. This was already in the pipeline and now it came to fruition. In addition to this financial contribution, they are also helping with a piece of professionalisation of ASAS. Very nice!
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Next newsletter: soon with information about walk
As we have not been able to do any fundraising in the past year, we are going to organise a few small-scale walks in different cities. Corona proof of course. Keep an eye on us on social media and via the newsletter.
Lucky cards still for sale!
They are back! Last year, our gift cards with the Brazilian lucky ribbons were a resounding success. Within three months, our entire stock was sold out. And rightly so: because what is nicer to give than a gift that makes someone in the Netherlands and in Brazil happier?
The idea is simple: we have cards with 1, 2 or 3 lucky ribbons (for €15, €25 or €50). You give such a card to yourself or someone else. The proceeds will go entirely to the projects of Power2Fly and thus… to children in Brazil who desperately need our help.
There is literally and figuratively a beautiful Brazilian story attached to the cards: tie a band around someone’s wrist, let that person make a wish and when the band falls off, the wish is fulfilled. Feel free to order more than one: then you can pass on a lot of happiness during the holidays.
Send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tikkie and Social Media
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