2018 ANNUAL REPORT POUND A WEEK GROUP
In the year to 31st December last we sent the magnificent sum of £42,800 to the two Pokot Missions. This brought our total support for the Missions since September 1997 to £339,420. The only expense was a bank charge of £4.
Source of funds
We began the year with funds in hand of £2,210. Weekly envelopes and one-off donations plus a tea and cake fundraising yielded £40,039. Gift Aid tax refunds provided a further £7,743. Funds in hand at the year-end came to £7,192. Although the £42,800 was less than the £46,100 we sent to the Missions in 2017, the difference is due mainly to timing of the transfer of funds to Pokot. For example the total donations etc plus tax refunds received in 2017 came to £46,838. The comparable figure for 2018 was £47,782.
How was the money used?
£16,398 went to Fr Conway at the Barpello Mission to pay the school and university fees of students sponsored by Pound a Week Group members. £6,000 also went to Fr Conway to help build a Water Pan (reservoir) for parishioners at a remote part of his Mission territory. A further £250 went to buy a cow for a bereaved family. Fr Sean McGovern at Rotu received £1,600 towards the cost of a second classroom at his Nursery school; £2,000 paid for the furnishings and equipment for the classroom; and a further £5,000 paid for the building of a new storeroom for the whole school
Discretionary funds were also sent to both priests to be used where they saw the greatest need, £4,892 went to Fr Conway and £9,865 to Fr McGovern.
How were the discretionary funds used? Fr Conway used the money to pay for the cancer treatment of a parishioner and for major surgery for a man badly injured in a motorbike accident. He paid the hospital fees of other patients in the Valley Hospital in Nakuru; and all the hospital and funeral expenses of the boy Robert, a pupil at the school, who died of appendicitis. He also bought much needed medicines for the school dispensary, including some very expensive anti-snake bite serum. And he helped deprived and poor families with the cost of school uniforms and other outgoings.
Among the projects on which Fr McGovern used his funds were breakfasts for his primary and nursery school children; help with uniforms; paying the running costs of the nursery school; for his health unit and of course the solar lamps project. He put aside £3,000 towards the cost of building a small house at his largest and most remote outstation at Chesawach which he will use to stay over weekends and give extended instructions after Mass to his 35 catechumens there. The house can be extended in the future to become the Presbytery when, as is expected, Chesawach become a full parish.
Eugene McGivern 20 January 2019