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Hope in South Africa Is Major Partner in Rotary International Grant

Contact:   Fritz Schneider, 301.728.4811


For Immediate Release



Grant Will Fund Activities in South Africa by Local Montgomery County Charity to Combat Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

(Poolesville, MD -- July 8) -- Rotary International has awarded a grant of $210,000 to Hope in South Africa (HISA), a Poolesville, MD based global partnership, and its implementing partners to fund efforts to combat Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) in South Africa’s Northern Cape Province, Joel Tjornehoj, HISA President, announced today. “Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is one of the most widespread causes of developmental disabilities in the world; this grant will enable us to continue our efforts to combat FASD which is 100% preventable and 100% incurable,” said Tjornehoj.

Hope in South Africa is a global partnership that empowers communities to enable every citizen to become healthy, responsible, contributing members of society, and has long been involved in a wide variety of activities in and around Richmond, South Africa to bring health, education, support, and hope to the citizens there.

The primary objective of the grant, which was applied for by the Rotary Clubs of Frederick, Maryland and Kimberley, South Africa, will be to develop a sports-based education and prevention curriculum that engages and teaches children between the ages of 10-18 years about the dangers of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) in South Africa’s Northern Cape Province, where the largest FASD epidemic on the planet exists. When successfully implemented, the program for children in middle and high schools will establish a scalable and effective FASD education model that other communities in South Africa can replicate.

The group will use the grant to train five Master Coaches and 30 Coaches from Northern Cape communities (Kimberley, together with smaller towns of Richmond and Colesberg,) and to increase knowledge about FASD, substance abuse, teenage pregnancy and nutrition among South African youth and their families by reaching 2,000 youth and 6,000 community members with critical information about FASD education and prevention.

Tjornehoj continued, “Rotary Clubs in South Africa and the USA, together with Grassroot Soccer (GRS) and Hope in South Africa (HISA) are a proven team in delivering health education. We’re excited about this new program and keenly grateful to Rotary International for its support.”

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Founded in 2005, Hope in South Africa formerly Hope in Richmond started as a partnership of St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Poolesville, Maryland, the Episcopal Diocese of Washington DC and the Anglican Diocese of South Africa to fight poverty and disease in South Africa. The effort began with a soup kitchen in Richmond, South Africa to supplement the nutritional needs of some of South Africa’s poorest rural citizens. Since 2005, the program has grown into a global effort which includes many partners in the United States, Canada and South Africa including Rotary International and Grassroot Soccer. The efforts of Hope in South Africa to break the cycle of poverty have been focused on providing the youth of the region important health education and prevention programs particularly in HIV/AIDS and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD). HISA continues to maintain a soup kitchen in Richmond which feeds over 40,000 meals annually while also running the Richmond Community Center which provides important health prevention messages and education to the youth. Hope in South Africa is committed to changing lives, one child at a time.


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