General interest

Rose Charities in Cambodia: Rebecca Brooks visits..

After returning from an inspiring trip to Cambodia, I wanted to share with you some of the uplifting stories and important work being carried out by Rose Charities in Cambodia. Here are stories of the courageous patients I had the pleasure of meeting and who are being treated at Rose facilities.

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1. FIRST STOP: Rose Charities Cambodia Eye Clinic

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One of the most endearing people I met during my travels was little Bunmeng, a 7 1/2 month old who travelled all the way from Svay Rieng province, a four hour journey, for eye care. I met Bunmeng and his family as they were waiting to be seen for a consultation. Bunmeng’s mother, aunt and older brother traveled four hours via taxi with him to the Rose eye clinic in order to be treated for abnormal eye discharge. Despite the long trip, Bunmeng was cared for at the Rose eye clinic free of charge. Run by a skilled Cambodian team of experts led by Dr. Hang Vra, the facility is the largest free eye clinic in Cambodia, which conducts 50 consultations each day and performs 50-60 eye surgeries a week.

 

2. SECOND STOP: Rose Cambodia Rehabilitation Centre (RCRC)

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RCRC is comprised of a stand-alone physical therapy facility which predominantly treats traffic accident patients, and a maternity center within the neighboring Chey Chumneas Referral hospital which provides pre and post-natal care. RCRC is led by two part-time Cambodian physical therapists, Ms. Chhay Leangkhy and Mr. Phok Somet, with volunteer support and mentorship by the experienced physio Zoe Blair of New Zealand. RCRC care is offered free of charge for indigent patients, and those who can afford a nominal fee pay per session. Despite the unlucky and discouraging accidents that led patients to RCRC, a pleasant atmosphere permeates the centre.

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Meet Maryne.  Only 17, Maryne comes to RCRC on a daily basis as soon as school lets out, after her left leg was crushed by her moto when a dog aimlessly ran into the street. She began coming to Rose for physical therapy after being treated in a public hospital for her acute care in addition to private home staff. Unfortunately, rehab is not included in hospitals as post-op care in Cambodia, both one of the reasons for RCRC’s inception and it’s high-demand among patients.

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Yi, 69, is a nun who began coming to RCRC after breaking her arm. She initially visited a local traditional Khmer healer, who mistakenly treated her wrist. In the months since the injury, her arm has healed itself, however, Yi’s shoulder was affected from the strain caused by her sling and she’s in severe pain. RCRC is working on a holistic approach to strengthening her upper body.

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RCRC’s newest patient is Chanrith, a 3 1/2 year old born with a congenital disjointed knee. His parents were not aware of the severity of his knee problems until recently, and while Chanrith has the ability to walk, he limps and experiences pain. RCRC is working on developing a physiotherapy program for Chanrith, in conjunction with the local children’s surgery center which is assessing whether or not he will need an operation.
3. THIRD STOP: Kosal’s home (a RCRC patient) in rural Takhmao outside Phnom Penh

I have one final, heartfelt story for you.

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The most captivating and inspiring story from my visit to Cambodia by far is that of Kosal. The breadwinner of his family, Kosal (30) supports his 88 year-old grandmother, his parents who cannot work due to debilitating illnesses, and his younger sister. While working at a construction site, the board Kosal was standing on unexpectedly snapped, falling a considerable distance and injuring his hip. Unable to cover the cost of the recommended surgery, Kosal remained bed-ridden for two months without the ability to walk, let along support his family. After learning about RCRC from a relative, Kosal began regularly attending physical therapy sessions at the centre, and in only a few weeks time (with a lot of dedicated care) was able to begin walking again. After marked improvement, Kosal has now reduced his RCRC visits to only once/week, and does the remaining exercises at home. Kosal has returned to part-time work and hopes to be fully employed again soon.

These are just a few of the courageous patients being treated at Rose facilities. In a country where post op physical therapy is rarely offered and where many needy patients are priced out of eye care, multiple Rose facilities are making it possible for these patients to get better so they can live healthy lives. For some that means returning to a job so you can support your family, it means forgetting that you used to limp and enjoying your childhood, and it means spending more time studying and enjoying adolescence. We all have our own stories. Become part of the Rose Charities story and you can help patients like Kosal, Chanrith, Maryne and Yi. #RoseCharities supports #PeopleHelpingPeople. Show your support here.

 

Events General interest

World Master Guitarist to play in Vancouver in April 2014 !

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Thank you to the amazing Rose Charities Sri Lanka Team…

DSC07568Vancouver, Canada.  1st February 2014

To Anthony Richard, Rajeeshan Shanmugalingam   and the whold Rose Sri Lanka Team, 

On behalf of Rose Charities International and of myself I would like to extend our very grateful  appreciation for your magnificent staging of the 6th Rose Charities International Conference from 24 to 26th January 2014 at Kalmunai.    The events were wonderfully organized and offered the international delegates  both a wonderful forum for discussion in and an opportunity to learn first hand of the impressive spectrum of projects developed and organized by Rose Charities Sri Lanka.

It is impossible to over emphasize how impressed we are with the work  of the Rose Sri Lanka team . You organization brings great pride to the whole Rose network and remains as one of its foremost  project foci  leading the way in so many areas and setting reference points from which projects in other countries can lean. Your dedication, drive and energy have, and continue to be inspirational and your planning and organization superb.  This was extended to the Rose Vl Conference and th parallel commemoration of last 10 years of amazing work.

Now, with the even recently over we are left with the most wonderful memories and impressions of so many aspects of Kalmunai and the projects and operations of Rose Charities Sri Lanka.   And those memories will last for many many years into the future .

So bravo and thank you to you all.  In a world where there is so much need  your team of Rose Charities Sri Lanka  has provide a light of hope for so many.    For this we join with so many you have helped,  in laudation and gratitude.

Yours sincerely

William Grut.  MD.

(Rose Charities International  Executive Secretary )

 

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Rose Charities International Conference…. Jan 2014

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Rose Charities Penang (Malaysia) raises funds for Haiyan victims..

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Events General interest People

“Elevate & Appreciate”…Showcase Kalmunai: Rose Sri Lanka 10th Anniversary

rose-sri-conference-2014a The community of Kalmunai, one of the worst sites of the 2004 tsunami, was left with little hope. But what a difference 10 years can make!
Come see for yourself a real Rose Charities success story, and share the lessons that make Rose projects work.
Kalmunai is ready to welcome and thank you for breathing life back into their community.

10 Reasons You Need to be There:

1. Learn personally from Rose Sri Lanka how to create the cash flow your own project needs to sustain itself.
Micro Credit Workshops are planned to show you & your organisation how to structure similar success: Kalmunai now supports 3000 family home based businesses, a project that started with only $5000

2. Witness where your money & energy has impacted other lives: see a community that has flourished.
See how only 100 people (including yourself) have changed the lives of thousands forever through a plan of self sufficiency. Their children will now be sharing the next generation with yours.

3. Celebrate with the Kalmunai community as it honours Rose Charities,  its contributors & volunteers.
It is a special day to pay tribute to those who have turned this community around. It is a reunion, a homecoming that will include local dignitaries & entertainment.

4. Connect at the Rose International Conference:  align with other international Rose projects.
Exchange your project ideas (optometry, medical) that Kalmunai could benefit from, streamline resources & celebrate successes.
5. Get real: take a reality check from life’s stresses and plug into a community that really means ‘community’.
Homestay with a local family or be invited to a meal with one. Visit a local family store or school that is sustained by Rose support. Why not bring your own family?

6. Participate in the experience as this event is documented for posterity.
Canadian media productions who were here 10 years ago, are returning to film the week’s events, demonstrating the lasting impact of Rose Charities in Sri Lanka for the world to see.

7. Investigate social & business investment opportunities in an emerging economy.
Be introduced to charity, social investing like micro credit, business or real estate prospects in the region. Tourism is the fastest growing sector. Medical practices that support the community.

8. Capture firsthand how  a multi- cultural multi-religious community functions in harmony, despite all the conflicts of war, social unrest and natural disasters.
Meet graduates of Rose’s University scholarship programs, families who have benefited from Rose micro-credit home-based businesses, and kids involved in inter-school Sports for Peace & pre-school programs.

9. Adventure into exotic cultural extremes that range from subsidence living to tea plantations, jungle elephant tours, 5 star beach hotels and beaches.
Organised guided nature & wildlife tours. Social cricket game: Rose Expats v Rose Sri Lanka :) Traditional dance, music & hospitality in diverse cultures & landscapes.

10. Share in the company of like-minded people who have touched a community at a real grassroots level.
Meet the volunteer doctors & nurses & teachers, the donors (corporate & private), the local Rose team, the beneficiaries, media, community leaders who all helped create this success. Share your story over dinner.

See with your own eyes the people whose lives and destinies have been positively changed by the efforts of Rose Charities and your donations.
The road to Kalmunai is testimony to how lasting change can occur, a pilgrimage to sustainability.

sri-conference-2014bIn a town that recognizes Rose Charities & Canada as its saving grace at its time of need, there will be no place on this planet that you will be welcomed more.
Limited Packages available from as little as $2500CDN* including economy flight (from Vancouver), shared accommodation, Rose Conference, community tours, guest celebrations connections, meals and workshops.
*not including connecting accommodation, nature excursions, 4star accommodation & meal options visas, health & travel insurance, spending money

Contact Rose Canada for details and ways we can assist you get you in getting there.
The journey begins here.
More details to follow….
See you in Kalmunai, Sri Lanka
Lawrence Keenan (Donors & Volunteers),
Erica Krutzen (Media & Vancouver Event),
Will Grut (Rose Int.& Canada)
Yoga Yogendran (BC Investors & Community),
Rajeeshan (Sri Lanka)
c/- Sri Lanka Conference Committee 2014

How often in life do you get to see the lasting impact that you have created from your volunteer efforts or donation?
This is one of those defining moments….

Events General interest

A Night with the Philippines: Fundraiser Concert, Vancouver, 5th December 2013

ANWPvan – A Night with the Philippines
Thursday, December 5 at 6:30pm
Croatian Cultural Centre in Vancouver, British Columbia

Events General interest People

Why consider Rose Charities ?

a4On the Vancouver CBC morning program hosted by Rick Cluff today (20 Nov 2013) there was a discussion on what to look for in an aid organization helping now in relief activities. A representative from the excellent Canadian ‘Charities Watch’ organization gave three criteria. They could have taken directly from Rose Charities and were as follows

1) Local network: Look for organizations with local involvments and networks prior to the crisis. Rose Charities was founded for work in S.E. Asia. Contacts and local networks within the Philippines have been present for years, especially through Rose Charities Director Dr Collin Yong, who has carried out multiple medical missions there prior to the crisis and has many local contacts. Within days of the current crisis occurring food was being delivered (while the media in Vancouver were continuing to discuss that ‘food was not getting through’ in north Negros Island, one of the worst hit areas, organized by Rose partners in the North Bacolod Rotary Club. . In addition local networking in S.E.Asia resulted in a hugely generous donation by an Indonesian Alternative Community Technology organization (Kopernik) of 100 large water filtration units which were directly send to the area. Now, Dr Yong himself is there working again with local counterparts, on a combined Rose Charities / Bacolod Rotary Medical missions, travelling by boat to the many outlying islands which to date have been almost untouched by assistance.

pakquake-pirzada (2)2) Experience: Look for organizations with experience in a specific area; Rose Charities volunteers have huge experience in overseas assistance. The whole organization was founded predominantly by field workers disillusioned with the waste, inefficiency and sadly, often frank dishonesty in the ‘aid industry;’ Rose Charities Canada’s volunteers include nurses, doctors, and other health professionals, engineers, accountants, financial managers, lawyers etc. Members from all walks of life and the majority with experience of work overseas in the whole spectrum of activities from immediate emergency to long term. Rose Charities is particularly strong with medical and health care, especially paediatric as many of its members work in this field, several a with the B.C. Children’s Hospital. Unlike some other organizations the organizers of Rose Charities see little demarcation as to what constitutes emergency relief. Millions of children and adults dying from treatable disease, poverty, conflict is equally an emergency to natural environmental disaster. The aim of Rose Charities is simply to help all to whatever degree it is able.

3) Look for track record. Look for organizations with a good track record in humanitarian relief: Rose Charities has a noteworthy track record in humanitarian assistance. These include assistance to Sri Lanka and Indonesia (Tsunami 2004), Pakistan (Earthquake Kashmir 2005), Hurricane Katrina USA 2005, Indonesia Volcano 2009), Sichuan katrina1Earthquake and Myanmar typhoon 2008, Haiti Earthquake 2010 Japan Tohoku Tsunami 2011, Pakistan flood 2012. The common denominator with Rose involvement has been policy of immediately, on the disaster occurring, activating, linking, co-ordinating, or finding local networks which can be supported to provide immediate assistance. This policy allows also the flexibility which can ensure assistance can actually get to areas which may be politically or logistically difficult for other organizations. Only secondarily, and if requested, suggested by the local counterpart is a team directly sent. Where teams have been sent however it has been with the policy of not simply rushing in and out in a matter of months, but staying, funding permitting to help the long-term rebuilding of the

area. In Sri Lanka 2005 for example, in the weeks after the tsunami there were dozens of organizations who arrived after Rose Charities team to work in the same area. However, 6 month later around 80 percent of them had departed, a year almost all of them and now, 10 years later Rose remains the only one. In the 10 years however, multiple community support programs have been carried out, including education, medical, poverty reduction etc. In Haiti, program support continues in the area of paediatric nursing training (the nursing training facilities having been destroyed by the earthquake). In Tohoku, work continues through close partners AMDA Japan and the medical center this group has established.

The ‘Charities Watch’ criteria fit Rose exactly. However Rose Charities organizers would add two more

4) Length of mission. As discussed above, many organizations seem to rush in (often with great expense ) distribute a lot of materials (much of which often is not needed, cannot get to the area through logistics difficulties etc. ) stay for a short while then depart very quickly. This can result in actually generating more hardship when supplies and medical services which the community start to depend on, are simply cut off again. Rose Charities aims wherever possible to ‘stay the course’  and help communities rebuild.  Two years after the 2004 Asian Tsuanmi, there were still people in some areas living in tents.  The effects of disaster don’t just to away in a few months.

5) Cost effectiveness. In Sri Lanka 2005 whole hotel floors were being hired by organizations in Colombo. Huge amounts were spent on logistics, salaries of ‘experts’, special transport (rented aircraft etc.). Rose Charities volunteers, are just that, volunteers. They are unpaid donating their time and expertise. While some airfares and some living costs (at local cost levels) are paid for rapid emergency missions, in general Rose Charities operations they are not (volunteers pay their own). Admin. costs are minimal. There are some bank transfer charges, and some low bookkeeping costs (though other accounting is generously donated). In short, Rose Charities is incredibly cost effective. It is no exaggeration, and easily demonstrable that Rose Charities has achieved in emergency situations an equivalent or more than many other organizations spending 10 or 20 times more

6) Reliabiltiy:    There are  many ways to convey information and it is natural for all organizations to want to put the best mary-er-sllight on their work possible.  However sometimes this means that the information is presented about what is actually being carried out in the field may not correlate with reality. This is not necessarily deliberate, it can be hard for information to get back through various channels and way-stations and remain in its natural form.  In addition there  is great pressure to  ’get first’ on air and put over a good picture.   There are no simple ways to know whether what is being said is really true or not but it is a very good idea to ask questions where possible.    Rose Charities tries to get publicity too, because it does help to promote our work and elicit donations.  In Rose however if we are assisting an emergency we know that (as outlined above) we already have our delivery mechanism in the field with a local network,  so that whatever donors kindly give, big or small,  will be fed directly into that mechanism to be implemented cost-effectively, where it is needed.

Events General interest

Philippine typhoon Haiyan update: medial assistance to north Negros Island

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Rose Charities Dr Collin Yong, currently carrying out medical relief along the north coast of Negros Island.  Missions carried out to Cadiz City as well as some of the small isolated islands which to date have had almost no relief.  Images above include Lakawon Island

DONATIONS GREATLY APPRECIATED

Events General interest

Walkathon for Philippines Relief: Richmond (Vancouver): Saturday 23rd November 2013

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