by Laura Gudmundson-Tillson, Gud Foundation Executive Director
Our first anniversary for the Gud Foundation is December 20th
Already? YES! And we are simply amazed at how much has been accomplished in this year that has gone by us so quickly. To catch you up, here is our very first year in review.
The Gud Foundation began to raise funds for girls education through the resale of found objects at a store in Escondido, CA. The money raised went to meet some immediate needs for the young girls at Casa de Jesus in Morelia, Mexico. Read the post “Resale Items Fund Amenities for Girls Education” for the story of our early fundraising efforts.
A space for girls to learn
Shortly after the start of 2014, our new blog and Facebook page went online. The Gud Foundation’s board members began diligent work towards what would be our biggest hope for 2014: a new library and learning center for the student residents of Casa de Jesus.
In February we raised over $3,000.00 at our first annual fundraising salon event held in our home. I was so pleased and honored by the support of local small businesses and friends who understand that educating girls leads to empowered nations.
We obtained the architectural designs for the library and in March 2014 the board approved the construction of the library. Finally, the hope of a place where these young students could read and learn and study was becoming real.
In July, we began making a list of items that would furnish the library and learning center we were working to build. A computer was a key necessity! So the Gud Foundation partnered with Shoes With Heart to collect gently used shoes that we could donate for cash. The fundraiser ran from August to September and we collected 1430 pounds of shoes!
At the same time, construction of the new library began in August and by mid September it was completed. It was so exciting to post photos of the library’s building progress, including all the excited faces of the girls who would enjoy and benefit from the space!
The library is beautiful and fully functional. It is used as a learning center where the girls study or take classes.
Our year is at an end, their learning is just beginning
Earlier this month I made my way back to Morelia to make an official finish of the library project with the purchase of the computer and some furniture. A plaque was posted in the space: “Gud Foundation Biblioteca”. We can all be honored knowing that students will use the space to its fullest potential. Here is a video I took of the Blessing Ceremony for the library. I love how the priest blessed the students AND the space! I think he has the right idea.
This is a completion of our dream of helping educate girls at Casa de Jesus by enhancing their learning experience.
This was an outstanding first year! I am grateful to our supporters and organizers who enabled us to execute our plans with great success. The Gud Foundation exists for girls who live in countries where basic education is rare and often an opportunity they will not likely have.We are looking forward to extending our network in 2015 in an effort to make education accessible for girls in all countries throughout the world. Educate Girls, Empower Nations. Will you join us? Please help us educate girls by making a donation to the Gud Foundation today.Thank you for your support and we will talk again soon!