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Ellenore's Note -- Today A Reader, Tomorrow a Leader

It was a big month for Open Hearts Big Dreams. We had our best GiveBIG effort ever - thank you to all who matched, gave, or shared! None of this work is possible without the funding we receive through these types of efforts!  

We hosted our first locally-focused workshop event organized and led by our team in Addis, Dr. Worku Mulat, Yoseph Ayalew, and Netsanet Kassahun. We were honored to have a special guest star and living long-distance running legend, Deratu Tulu, who read one of our books, Music of the City, and is featured in another, Cheetahs of Ethiopia. We also launched and completed orientation for our first US Embassy American Corners Computer Science and Leadership Boot Camp led by Ezra Negussie, Yonas Alemu, and others. My daughter and I shared our thoughts with both audiences virtually through interviews and videos. We were reminded of our beginnings, our roots, and our vision for our work. I founded this organization because I wanted to do my part to make the world more equal through collaborating with others who shared this goal and to connect my amazing daughter to her wonderful birth country and original culture. I wanted to share the answers to some frequent questions as well as some of the best advice I received over the years – both of which were part of our orientation efforts and are applied across our organization.

FAQ One: Why the name “Open Hearts Big Dreams”?
“Open Hearts” allow us to be open to new possibilities and connections. “Big Dreams” allow us to look beyond what we can do now to what should be or what we can imagine. Together, Open Hearts (Collaboration) plus Big Dreams (Vision/Innovation) equals Positive Impact

FAQ Two: Why do you have inclusive future technical and business/entrepreneurship leadership focus?

Leaders are those that step forward to solve challenges for themselves, their communities, their country, and the world. Technical and academic skills are tools, but leadership is a mindset that is required to use those tools to their greatest impact. The world needs all types of leaders, so we must be intentional to include a balance of genders and welcome those who are differently abled. When everyone is represented and given the opportunity to participate, the results are significantly better for everyone.

Read more on the blog.

Thank You For Making This GiveBig Our BEST EVER!

We were blown away by the response to this year's Give Big fundraiser. It was our BEST EVER! We earned all available matching funds, raising over $16K for our literacy, leadership, and innovation projects in Ethiopia ($4K more than last year!) These crucial funds will go to current and future literacy projects like our new bilingual STEM manuals, publishing our books directly in Ethiopia, and organizing learning opportunities like Computer Science Boot Camp and mobile art classes. Your donations will result in more opportunities to learn and grow for Ethiopian kids and young adults. THANK YOU for helping us turn BIG DREAMS into BEAUTIFUL REALITIES!
Amazing Volunteers Pivot to Launch Our Future Leaders Computer Science Boot Camp Virtually

We're grateful to our brilliant computer science trainer volunteers, Theo Tefera, Abebe Amare, and Yonas Alemu, for leading the development of our virtual Computer Science Boot Camp. This launch is part of our grant work with the US Embassy American Corners which is focused on creating future leaders with computer science, business and entrepreneurial skills. We have a great first cohort of future leaders from Bahir Dar, Jimma, and Dire Dawa, who shared their ambitious goals for their own growth as well as their proposed contributions to their communities. Given the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, we had to pivot to a virtual model and our team led a multi-day orientation starting in May that will provide both computer science and leadership skills.
OHBD In Addis With Derartu Tulu!

We are excited about the success of our first event in Addis, where athletes, kids, and community leaders got together to talk about literacy, leadership, and how to get more books to more readers. We were especially honored to welcome Olympian and long-distance running legend Derartu Tulu to read one of our Ready Set Go books to some very lucky kids and grown-ups. 

We will soon have 20 titles from our Ready Set Go Books available for pickup in Addis ($2/book; 50 book minimum) as well as our new teaching manuals in chemistry, physics and biology based on the award-winning work of Tewabe Yigsaw from Dangla. Thank you to our amazing Addis team for making all this possible.

See What's New on the OHBD YouTube Channel

Have you checked out the OHBD YouTube Channel lately? We've uploaded several new videos featuring incredible multilingual volunteers reading our Ready Set Go books in English, Amharic, Tigrinya, and Afaan Oromo. Tune in to hear Tex Roro read Let's Go in Amharic or hear Christian Abebe read The Cheetahs Of Long Distance Running In Ethiopia in English where you can learn about Derartu and other famous runners. When we reach 1000 subscribers we will be eligible to begin receiving funds for our videos, which will help us create and distribute more bilingual books. You can help simply by subscribing to our channel and sharing with others!  If you want to be one of our volunteer readers, reach out and we will send you a free book.

You Can Help Support Literacy, Leadership and Innovation!

  1. Support us with your Rite Aid PurchasesRegister for RXfundraising to support Open Hearts Big Dreams Fund; Sign up for wellness+rewards; Shop: when you shop at Rite Aid, OHBD receives funds!
  2. Subscribe to and share our YouTube Channel! When our channel reaches 1,000 followers we will be able to begin receiving funds from our videos. You can help, simply by subscribing and sharing!
  3. Run a Facebook birthday or goal oriented fundraiser Facebook covers the fees so more goes to our projects! You can also ask your Employer if they provide matching donations.
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Open Hearts Big Dreams Fund · Editor - Anna Graham · 3518 241st Ave SE · Issaquah, WA 98029 · USA

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