If you've been waiting for an opportunity to introduce a few friends to Five Talents, December 5 is the day.
Participate in the last matching gift opportunity of 2012 by inviting three friends to join you in donating $5 to Five Talents. Your combined $20 will be matched by a generous donor and become $40.
Your advocacy for Five Talents is critical as we seek to reach even more women and men in places like South Sudan, Myanmar and Indonesia.
Five Talents equips, trains and empowers women and men who find themselves struggling to sustain a micro-enterprise. By telling your friends and loved ones about Five Talents and its mission, you give us increased credibility.
This holiday season, make a gift that will transform the lives of women and men in places like South Sudan, Myanmar, Indonesia and Peru.
With the Five Talents E-Gift Catalog you can invest in a program of your choice, such as savings group formation in South Sudan, or business training in Myanmar. You can then send your friends and family an exclusive e-card that reflects your donation!
Purchases from the Five Talents E-Gift Catalog are tax-deductible and come with an e-card that you can e-mail to as many as 10 loved ones.
Let's say you planned to make a donation to Five Talents for Thanksgiving. If you make your gift through the E-Gift Catalog, you can choose the program you want to support – for example, our savings-led program in South Sudan.
Since 2002, Five Talents has been working in under-served communities outside of Jakarta, Indonesia with its local partner, GERHATI. In this video, filmed and produced for Five Talents by David Middleton, you'll get an inside look at the transformation that is taking place in the capital city of the world's fourth most populous country.
GERHATI, an acronym in the local language for "Gateway of Hope for Human Transformation," was conceived and developed jointly by Five Talents, in partnership with the Anglican Diocese of Singapore and the expatriate Anglican community of All Saints Church in Jakarta in 2002. The GERHATI Foundation, located just outside of Jakarta in Bekasi, Java, is registered as a cooperative and started operations in April 2005.
Five Talents and its partners provide not only micro-loans, but also business skills training, spiritual support, free health care opportunities and even workshops on personal care. As with all of Five Talents' programs, people of any or no faith may participate.
In 2013, Five Talents plans to expand into another Jakarta community where traditional money lenders have annualized interest rates as high at 800 percent.
Take a moment to look at this photo of a boy in Jakarta, Indonesia. You might just see yourself.
For me, it was the small toy section of the grocery store that my mom used to shop at on Saturday mornings. I'd spend 30 minutes picking through the Hot Wheels cars and then bring one back to my mom's cart, in hopes she'd let me drop it in. For you, it might have been a Sears catalog or a storefront window that mezmerized you as a child and spoke to you in your dreams.
For this boy, barefoot in a Jakarta slum, it was a treasure trove of plastic toys tacked to a sidewalk stall that held his gaze.
I'm trying to guess the particular item that has caught his attention. Is it the tiny fishing pole with pink and green fishes? Is it one of the race cars? The fighter jet? The "Monopoli" game?
The photo, taken by Five Talents consultant David Middleton, is a good reminder about the families that Five Talents seeks to serve in the developing world. They make speak a different language, navigate a different culture and lead altogether different lives, but they are in so many other ways just like you and me.
Nearly every week we post photos, stories and interviews showing just how Five Talents is fighting poverty, creating jobs and transforming lives in the developing world.
But the truth is, we're just one factor in the equation of success that is reflected in this blog. There are others: God, of course; our partners on the ground in places like South Sudan, Myanmar and Indonesia; the considerable creativity and resilience of our micro-entrepreneurs; and also -- you.
Today marks the soft launch of our new "Walk with Us" campaign. In the coming weeks, we'll be asking you to participate in several exciting online social media campaigns.
We'll invite you to become a recurring donor, where just $10 per month can provide loan capital, financial services, business training and spiritual mentoring for up to five micro-entrepreneurs.
Throughout the 2012-2013 fiscal year, we'll also be asking you to pray for the campaign's success. Your faithful prayers will be crucial.
On a recent visit to our program in Indonesia, Five Talents Program Director Suzanne Schultz met a family that was about to send their son off to college for the first time. The remarkable thing about this encounter was that the parents, Bertua (R) and Albine (M), were among the first clients of Five Talents' partner in the country, GERHATI. (Five Talents helped to found this organization in 2002 in partnership with the Anglican Diocese of Singapore and the expatriate Anglican community of All Saints Church in Jakarta.)
On the left, you can barely see son Martin's packed bag strapped to the back of their family motorbike. Martin got a scholarship to Indonesia's Sriwijaya University. Minutes after this shot was taken, Bertua and his son climbed onto the motorcycle and made the trip to his son's new school in South Sumatra.
A child says "ahhh" at a free health clinic held in April by Five Talents' partner in Indonesia GERHATI. The organization's "Kids Day" promotion encouraged parents in an impoverished Jakarta community to bring their children and young adults in for check-ups and medical consultations.
Five Talents helped to found GERHATI in 2005. The local organization works with authorities and a national NGO named Perkantas in the slums of Jakarta to provide healthcare (among other services) to people in the predominantly Muslim community.
This is just one example of Five Talents' holistic approach to empowering the poor. Besides providing loan capital, Five Talents and its local partners set up savings and loan groups, provide business skills training and spiritual mentorship, and -- in some cases -- offer other non-financial services, such as financial literacy in Burundi, and health clinics in Indonesia.
In a world where almost half the population lives on less than $2 a day, finding money to start a small business enterprise is almost impossible. But Five Talents is helping to reduce poverty in developing countries by investing in poor entrepreneurs through small loans, business training and mentoring.
Over the years, area golfers have raised thousands of dollars to help fund Five Talents' holistic microcredit programs that touch women like Hotmian, an entrepreneur based just outside of Jakarta, Indonesia, where she runs a shop and a small catering business.
Here are four ways that you can participate in this year's Golf Classic: