POUND A WEEK GROUP 2017 ANNUAL REPORT
In the year to 31st December last we sent £46,100 to the two Pokot Missions. (In 2016 we sent £44,260.) This brought our total support for the Missions since September 1997 to £296,620. The balance on hand at 31 December was £2,210. Expenses NIL. A member of the Group paid for the Pokot envelopes.
Source of Funds.
We began the year with funds in hand of £1,471. During the year donations of £42,096 were received mainly from the weekly envelopes and one-off donations, particularly for school and university fees. The figure also included almost £300 from a cake and coffee afternoon, as well as £1,000 donated by family and friends in memory of Grace Parker, a founder member of the Pound a Week Group. A further £4,742 came from tax refunds on Gift Aided donations.
How was the money used?
£19,280 paid the school and university fees of 30 students sponsored by members of the Pound a Week Group and provided funding for the Fr. Ken Freeman Memorial Scholarship. £26,233 was given to Fr David Conway and Fr Sean McGovern to use where they saw the greatest need.
Some specific projects. Fr Conway at the Barpello Mission used the greater part of his share of the funds to buy food and water during the worst drought in Pokot memory and transport them to surrounding villages. He also bought uni-mix food for babies and young children brought by their mothers for immunisation. As a further incentive for mothers to have their babies immunised, those who did so left the clinic with a supply of emergency food for their families. Funds were also used to help pay for medical treatment for poor and seriously ill people. £1,000 paid for an operation for a man with cancer of the inner ear. A three year old boy had his transport and hospital treatment for snake bite paid for. It was successful. Finally, £587 was sent to Fr Conway to buy a gift of a milking cow or camel for the distraught family of a student at the school who died from peritonitis and who were already mourning multiple recent deaths of other family members.
Fr Sean at the Rotu Mission also used his funds for emergency food, with a special project distributing food to the elderly and infirm on set days. He earmarked some money for his education fund which he uses to help pay the school fees for able children from poor families. £1500 was spent on books and equipment for his new nursery school and to help pay the salary of the young teacher, a girl he had supported through secondary school and teacher training college. £1,500helped buy a stone crushing machine for use in his building projects, including a planned second classroom in his nursery school.