Mid Year Update 2023
Thank you to all our donors and supporters! I’m pleased to report that FOSMO is on track again this year to provide Christmas, infant care and educational needs. Your support also allow us to work with other organizations that are deeply involved at the home. The latest project was the addition of a laundry room near the nursery.
For those of you who are new to the area, check out our website to learn more about how a group of expats started with the simple idea to give the kids at the local children’s home in Olon a great Christmas. Since its founding in 2017, FOSMO has done that and much more. www.fosmo.me for more information.
FOSMO is not planning a fall fundraiser this year, so once again, we’ll rely on donations to make sure their is money for the programs that we sponsor at the home. If you are interested in touring the home, finding out more about what we do or just want to donate, please contact me at email@example.com.
Summary Of 2022
Christmas: The pageant was extra special this year with new dance numbers, a musical trio and the touching story of the birth of Jesus enacting by the kids. The kids work hard to practice their parts, working with Erwin Musper on music, a professional acting coach partially supported by FOSMO and a volunteer dance instructor. Volunteers in the area provided a pot luck dinner for the kids and staff including 5 turkeys donated by long time supporter and then baked by some talented cooks.
Education: School is back in session in person here on the Coast but Covid has changed many of the routines. There is a much greater need for printing materials so FOSMO was asked to purchase a printer like the one the school across the street uses. It makes sense to save wear and tear plus ink on the desk top models we provided last year and use the larger machine for big batches. There are a number of children at the home who cannot attend school across the street so the new Red House dorm actually has classrooms on the whole first floor. Some children arrive at the home with little or no formal education, so tutors work with them in the hopes that each child can get up to speed enough to join the regular classes. For Christmas, FOSMO included several memory games that also help with the little ones who need to develop focus and mental dexterity. Volunteers who are here full time are needed to assist the tutors with a few hours of service each week if you are interested. Consistency is imperative so the home needs people who can be there on a regular basis. Spanish fluency is helpful!
Infant Care: Right now there are 8 babies under the age of 2 in care. FOSMO spent $1700 this year on formula and baby supplies. There were two babies this year brought to the home when they were less than a month old! Babies arrive abandoned and abused, but the caregivers nurse them to health and give them the unconditional love every child deserves. Our thanks to Danielle Musper for working with us to stretch our budget by shopping for deals and managing the inventory of various types of formula.
Other: MJM Foundation started by the Muspers has broken ground on a much needed new dormitory in the midst of the pandemic and now 2 of the 3 floors are complete!
FOSMO gave MJM a $5000 grant to help with the initial construction costs last year and followed that in 2022 with another $5000 which paid for the flooring on the second story where the nursery is now up and running. The babies moved from an old, mildew ridden part of the campus into a brand new space full of light! It’s both beautiful and functional. Working with others, we can make our donations stretch farther and prevent duplication of efforts. Kudos to MJM for making this project a reality!
FOSMO continues to have very low operating costs. No one is paid a salary or stipend. Andrew Kagan, once again, provided legal services and help with tax filing. Our main cost relates to PayPal fees.
Donations: Donations this year were $9326. A little over half of the contributions are from our monthly donors whose consistency helps us tremendously. We appreciate all the donors who from gave so generously. We especially thank the family of Scott Bloomquist in honoring his memory. Some donors used to live here and some have dear relatives who are locals. Some have toured the home and were touched to give and others have never set foot in Ecuador but give to support the kids out of love. To all those who wish to remain anonymous and to those who are long time supporters, you all have our deepest gratitude.
Funding for Programs:
Infant care: $1700
Misc: $5000 (Grant to MJM for nursery)
Starting balance $12,434
+ Donations 9,326
- Program Support 12,681
- PayPal fees, etc 209
Ending balance of all accounts $8870
FOSMO Board Of Directors
The final board for 2022 was as follows: Kaye Gosline, President; Betty-Anne Ouellette, Secretary; Darlene Howell, Treasurer
I wish to thank Ann Luther, Jana Silverling and Shawn Turner who also served on the board for part of the year. Darlene is retiring from the board because she is moving to Manta. She was part of the original board back in 2017 and has been a willing volunteer for any task needed. We will surely mis her! We are excited to have Claudette Shaw join us for 2023. She is a long time contributor of her money and time. But we need more help!
If you are a full time resident who has time to share and a passion for kids, please contact us. There is a need for people with fresh ideas and eagerness to serve.
Summary Of 2021
Summary Of 2020
Almost from the start, 2020 brought a whole new set of challenges: from a pandemic and quarantine; lack of government funding; and a record number of children in care. Despite those challenges, FOSMO was able to step up and support the kids with much needed help thanks to the generosity of our donors. Even with no fall fundraiser and the influx of new children, especially babies, we were able to deliver on our mission of providing Christmas, infant care and educational needs. The challenges which came with COVID serve to make the board of FOSMO more grateful than ever for the community around us and our friends/family all over the world who share our passion for these kids. The smiles in this picture from Christmas 2020 say it all.
Highlights of the year
1. Christmas: Since the pageant was not open to guests this year, Santa had a bit of help from the Muspers handing out backpacks filled with clothes, shoes and towels for all the kids. Since school continues to be online only, FOSMO provided reams of paper and lots of ink for the printers. Volunteers in the area provided a potluck dinner for the kids and staff including 5 turkeys donated by HIKE and baked by locals.
2. Education: In January, FOSMO granted $4000 to Mission Santa Maria (MSM) to fund hiring tutors. So many of the children are behind in their education when they arrive at the home and some kids just need special assistance to get up to speed. During Spring Break, FOSMO was sponsoring classes in sewing and mosaics, but these were cut short by the quarantine. As the children started back to school online, FOSMO donated $2700 in computers to help with their classes.
3. Crocs on the Ground: Even before the quarantine on the coast, the government was having trouble paying the home the stipend used to feed the kids and staff. Working with others, a campaign was started to raise funds to make sure that food was on the table every day. The need was urgent and made more so by the limitations on supply and shipment. FOSMO with your help donated $5000 in March and another $2000 in May for emergency food supplies.
4. Infant Care: Right now there are 10 children under the age of 2 in care. FOSMO spent $2400 this year on formula and baby supplies. We also provided a new baby crib to help with the overcrowding.
5. Other: MJM Foundation started by the Muspers has broken ground on a much needed new dormitory. The pandemic slowed progress but it is being built now. FOSMO gave MJM a $5000 grant to help with the construction costs. Working with others, we can make our donations stretch farther and prevent duplication of efforts. Kudos to MJM for making this project a reality!
FOSMO is very fortunate to have very low operating costs. No one is paid a salary or stipend. Andrew Kagan, once again, provided legal services, helped with tax filing, and paid our bank fees. Our biggest cost this year was PayPal fees including the ATM fees for using a PayPal debit card.
1. Donations: Donations this year were $15,271 which is amazing considering not having a fundraiser and the competition from so many other worthy causes in these turbulent times. About 40% of the contributions are from our monthly donors which helps us tremendously. We appreciate all the donors from around the world who reached into their hearts and gave so generously. Thank you for your continued support.
2. Funding for Programs:
Emergency Food: $7000
Infant care: 2400
Misc: 5203 (Grant to MJM of $5000 and taxi for Dustin before the shutdown)
3. Cash Flow:
Starting balance of $16,845 + Donations and sales $15,287
Minus Program Support of $26,138 + Operation costs of $806 ($628 for banking fees, 150 for web hosting and $28 for printing)
Ending balance of all accounts is $5188
The board for 2020 was as follows:
Kaye Gosline, President
Maria del Carmen Montesdeoca, Vice President Miguel Labrador
Shawn Turner, Secretary Panayota Keramidis
Pat Shepard, Treasurer Teresa Muñoz
Each member serves a two-year term and we wish to thank Yota and Teresa whose terms are expiring. If you are a full-time resident who has time to share and a passion for kids, please contact us before the next board meeting on January 28. We are looking to fill the two vacancies and add two additional members. Normally, our meetings are monthly, and our fall fundraiser is in October. Candidates for the board are needed with fundraising or event planning/execution skills but if that isn’t your forte, then we’ll need lots of volunteers for the event!
Summary of 2019
Support for Infants: FOSMO provided $2900 worth of formula for the babies this year. It’s part of our mission to provide for the health of children, especially ones who arrive with special needs.
Education: Thanks to a successful Back to School drive, we were able to purchase a printer, laminator and computers to help kids do their school projects on site. FOSMO also provided monthly taxi fare for a child to get extra help before entering school and supplies for fine motor training for some other children. Recently, we also paid for installation of internet service at the boys facility, Ghandi. The total for education was about $3500.
Infrastructure: At the request of the director, FOSMO renovated key office areas to provide a better environment for the children as they enter the orphanage and later come for counseling. Later a key section of roofing was redone and improved. All together the projects were $10,550.
Christmas: All of the back backpacks, school supplies and other treats cost just $4547. That included 77 children and 8 caregivers in training. Thanks to some generous friends for providing the bins used for school supplies and also some personal care items. About half of the money spent was education related.
5. Other: During the extra cold weather this year, each child received a warm blanket. We also provided about $300 of fish and chicken to the orphanage.
Thanks to Donors and Volunteers
FOSMO is very fortunate to have no overhead costs. No one is paid and we have essentially no operating costs other than our bank and PayPal fees. Likely much of what nonprofit organizations have to pay is donated. Andrew Kagan, once again, provided legal services, help with tax filing and even reimbursed our local US bank fees.
Donations: Donations this year were $16,384 which was about four times that of our first year as a nonprofit! FOSMO now has eleven recurring donors for a total of $300/month which is very helpful in projecting cash flow. This year, we had a number of large donations from individuals which is greatly appreciated. There are so many kind souls who have given with love and genuine care. A big thanks to all who helped Cyndy Wergin raise nearly $1000 in tips for her piano lessons and performances.
Fundraisers: Thanks to those who donated to the silent auction, bought tickets and came to help raise close to $9,500 for the cause. Your work as volunteers and supporters make the event successful. And a big thanks to those who bought tickets to the 50/50 raffle for the Back to School drive, raising $1200 in just 6 weeks.
Roger Thomte and Cyndy Wergin deserve a huge round of applause for all their efforts. Since the founding of FOSMO in January of 2018 and even before, their passion for the kids has led them to give generously of their time and talents. Their leadership turned this group of volunteers into a qualified nonprofit with a nice website. They laid the foundation for many successful years to come. Also retiring from the board are Bill Baker and Annie Rikel. Both of them have worked very hard especially when it came to supporting the fundraisers and Christmas. FOSMO has been very lucky to have had some terrific board members over the last two years and they all deserve our thanks!
Plans for 2020
The new board for 2020-21 is as follows: Officers:
Kaye Gosline, President
Maria del Carmen Montesdeoca, Vice President Shawn Turner, Secretary
Pat Sheperd, Treasurer
Michelle DeWolfe Miguel Labrador Panayota Keramidis Teresa Muñoz