Hello, my name is Betsy Byrd. In September 2016, I returned to Chicago after living in Moshi, Tanzania for four years. While there, I had the privilege of becoming friends with an exceptional local woman, Asia Ally. She became my soul sister, my Tanzanian cultural mentor, my confidant and my rock when things got rough. I am in awe of Asia’s inner strength, perseverance, and resilience. She inspires me. Asia is in need of some global compassion, please.
The purpose of this Campaign:
1. Is to help my friend, in her time of need.
2. Asia is in dire need of some financial assistance in her arduous climb of herself and three sons (Hamidu, Ally, and Omari) out of extreme poverty (less than a $1.25 a day). For Asia to accomplish this, she needs a helping hand with money for her sons’ education, to kick start her tailoring teaching business and six months’ worth of rent. *Monies are needed by mid-July 2017, please.*
3. By helping this one family today with the boys’ education, you are helping them build strong foundations for their future families. Receiving a solid education will enable them to have good jobs and sustainable futures.
What the money will go toward:
>Hamidu – 3,800,000TZS (with the currency fluctuation rates approx. $1,700USD) is needed to pay back a loan for his 6-month vocational carpentry school he is now attending, plus the cost of a one-month
internship in Dar es Salaam, which comes at the end of June 2017. When Hamidu completes his internship, he will be ready for employment.
> Ally (Asia’s middle son) – 5,100,000TZS (approx. $2,300USD) total – this amount Is needed for Ally’s
surprise third year and to repay the loan his mother has for his first year. To the shock of parents, just months into the second, a third year was added from an overnight command from the government. This directive left parents and students scrambling as to how they will pay for this third year.
>Omari – 660,000TZS (approx. $300USD) for one year’s worth of school lunches, field trips and mandatory exam fees (junior year in high school).
2. Asia’s business - 1,400,000 (approx. $600USD) to kick start Asia’s tailoring teaching business. Asia is currently teaching only one student, but five students are waiting for her to buy more sewing machines. Each sewing machines costs 250,000TZS (approx. $116USD). She also needs extra chairs, a tarp for year-round outdoor teaching, fabric, scissors, and thread.
3. Rent - 600,000 TZS (approx. $250USD) for six months’ rent. (Note: Can you believe it, $250USD covers 6-months’ worth of rent?)
Before I left Moshi, $1,200 was already donated. I donated $250USD toward six month’s rent and two of my family members donated a total of $950 to go toward Ally’s second school year. So, even before the official conception of this GoFundMe campaign $1,200 of the $6,350 goal has already been raised.
Asia’s Life’s Story
Against all odds, Asia is a survivor. Her story is one of incredible hardship, all caused by the actions of others. Against all odds, she is a survivor. Now at 39, Asia has an inner-perseverance and strength that does not stop. She is resourceful. She is resilient. She has endured a life of utter hardship that few of us can fathom. She has been kicked down by other people but always finding the willpower to keep on chugging.
Orphaned at age 10. Her extended family took her in only to enslave her as their house girl. While her cousins went to school, Asia stayed behind caring for the babies, cleaning, laundry and cooking for the family 16.
At age 13, Asia was raped by a man 22 years her senior. She got pregnant. At age fourteen, shortly after the delivery of her first son, Hamidu, her now ex-husband paid her family a dowry. Asia was a forced to marry her rapist.
Twenty-two years later, 2014 at age 35, with her three sons, Hamidu, 21; Ally, 16; and Omari 11, depending on her; Asia courageously left her emotionally and physically abusive husband. At the time she left the beatings became more frequent and harsher, often causing her to go the doctor. By Asia leaving her abusive husband; she taught her boys a very powerful life lesson. When Asia left her abusive marriage she did NOT have a single shilling/penny to her name; NO steady job; NO pots and pans; NO bed linens nor dishes, etc. She had three coffee tables and a bedframe, but no mattress.
Her ex-husband long ago abandoned all his parental duties. As a single mom and orphan, Asia is alone; she has no family to help her. Even strong, resilient people need a helping hand. Please share this message with your friends, family, and co-workers. Don’t have much to give? With the exchange rate as it is, no worries, even small blessings can go a long way in Tanzania. All donations big or small will be greatly appreciated. Asante Sana (Thank you very much) for your compassion and time.
**(Note: - GoFundMe (GFM) and processor fees can add up to 7.9% + .30 from each donation made, please check out their policies. https://www.gofundme.com/pricing. GFM does not support direct transfer of funds to Tanzania. Therefore, GFM will transfer donations received into my personal account, and I will then wire the funds to Asia’s Moshi bank account, minus $50USD international wire transfer fees my bank charges. (If you want scanned transfer receipts, please request; I will happily provide.)**
- bruce blair
- George Reynolds
- Jackie Kirley
- Rebecca Han
- Bruce Blair
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