2020

Annual Report

Learn more about Saidiana’s year.

Greetings!

In SAiDIANA’s first annual report, I would like to thank some very key people who have helped us bring this mission to empower Congolese women to build better futures for themselves, their families, and their communities through micro-grants and skills training programs to life.

Chingwell Mutombu, our founder whose family hails from the Congo and where she was raised, through her gratitude to others who helped make her dreams come true, launched this non-profit to support the resilient and hard-working women in the Congo so that their dreams can also come true. With countless hours and dedication to the mission, she continues to guide our teams and us in the Congo. Chingwell is appreciative of all the donors who have big hearts–they all represent what is good in our world today. She sends her deepest gratitude to all.

Diana Carter, through friendship, guidance, and financial support from the very beginning, she was the brains behind the launch of First Step Initiative, now SAiDIANA, on how to impact in a sustainable way the women in the Congo. Her experience as a prominently successful businesswoman and entrepreneur supports us to make this also a reality to many women in the Congo.

John Mach, a foremost leader in the medical field, ensures that we fulfill the primary consequence of empowering women that their families have basic nutrition for healthier lives. He has been critical to the survival of the organization with a much-needed infusion of support and leadership. We are very appreciative of his generosity to support of many projects, including the distribution of soy powder rich in protein to hospitals, oven for a bakery, capital for a fishmonger, and launch of a pharmacy.

Kathy Walstead-Plumb and John Mach were introduced by Jeannine Rivet, who together led us through the restructuring of the organization and helped the organization move away from microfinance to focus on micro-grants.

Candace Arp, through her love of her Decorah, IA community, her skills in sewing, and making beautiful things, she translates her efforts into another community across the pond. She links to Chingwell, our founder, who was born and went to college in Iowa.

Frank Babka a full-time philanthropist who is truly dedicated to our international community in the Congo and the women entrepreneurs. He enjoys the cross-cultural connection and how he can make the world a better place.

Jeannine Rivet a renowned leader, counselor, and influencer in business, is also a long supportive of SAiDIANA and opened her home to critical benefactors to spread the word about our mission and cause for the women in the Congo across her network expanding our reach and strengthening us as a non-profit organization.

Anonymous donor had the inspiration to support the launch of the Young Mums project, which takes young women off the streets in partnership with Congo Children’s Trust and Kimibilio and teaches them beautician skills and upon graduation, equipment to start a small salon.

With their love and generosity, they make our mission possible to empower these women to launch pharmacies, cultivate the land, raise chickens, create hairdos and dresses for their communities this past year and years to come.

With gratitude,

Becky Jasper
Board Chair

The US Board

2020 was business as normal except that we went 100% virtual board meetings, which actually makes it a lot easier to meet more often! So our volunteer board met monthly, guiding and strategizing for the years to come.

We have new board members bringing fresh ideas and strategies that make our board meetings fun and invigorating. Please see our smiling faces on our team page.

The Congolese Board

Finalizing the primary members to help support and guide our activities was an important process. We held many interviews and conferences to invite just the right people. More to come as we complete their profiles on our website.

Projects

Sewing School

With no education, no spouse, and no income, women are often treated as outcasts, but teaching them a skill where they gain confidence truly empowering them to take charge of their lives. SAiDIANA improved 8 women’s lives and families by training them how to sew and providing them a kit to start their own business upon graduation. Through the collaboration of Kimbilio’s facilities and staff, we also follow up on past graduates to provide guidance and additional accounting support.

Beautician School

Most of our women are taken from off the streets abandoned by their families usually through the death of their mother and remarriage they are forced to make a living through prostitution; however, when these children have their own, this living is more complicated, so we provide a new path for these Young Mums.

In 2020, we offered a second class for women in our new community where we are working in Kisanga who wanted to learn as well. We held a separate class and graduation with kits to start their own business.

Chicken Raising

In our new community of Kisanga, Maria, Veronique, and Ariette had participated in our introductory meeting when we first moved into this area. They were moved by Bea and Nancy, who are quite inspirational as they sing and dance with the women to raise them up and create community and support. Together they collaborated with Bea and Nancy, and subsequently, we funded our inaugural launch of a brand new enterprise in Kisanga. In this new area which is what is known in the US as a food desert where there is not a market or strong business economy, this is a trusted and sustainable business where we have had many successful projects with a similar business model. Our Congolese managers, Bea and Nancy, know the ins and outs of chicken rearing and coach the women on successful chicken breeding.

Pharmacy

Two nurses and a pharmacist got together with the dream of opening their own pharmacy, but until then, it was only a dream until SAiDIANA who helped them launch their new business with the support of two other business experts. Across the 5, there are 29 families that they care for—the impact is extensive.

Land

We are extremely excited to share that we have committed our resources to something longer and sustainable for women for many years to come. This land is airable, with rich soil, and perfect for cultivation. We are launching the farming cooperative with Nyota, Mwanbuyi, Bernadette, Clairanne, Mwelwangosa, who combined have 28 children and family members in their care.

2020 Financials

2020 Statement of Activities

Functional Expenses

Revenue

Individual Contributions

Total Revenue Contributions

 
$44,618

$44,618

Programming: 75% ($42,006)
Fundraising: 13% ($7,393)
Administration: 11% ($6,240)

Total Functional Expenses: $55,639

Expenses

Personnel
Contract Services
Supplies & Expenses
Fees
Grants
Other

Total Expenses
Net Income

 
$16,000
$9,978
$5,651
$444
$21,000
$2,566

$55,639
($11,021)

Fundraising in 2020 was a challenge with restrictions and uncertainty from the Covid-19 pandemic. However, at the end of 2019, we had strategically put ourselves in a strong financial position to fund and grow our programs in the Congo. Fundraising is expected to offset grant expenses next year as the world recovers from the impacts of Covid-19. In an unprecedented strategy, we engaged JMurphy & Associates to explore fundraising options and grant writing. This provided us a baseline and education on fundraising through these avenues.  We are reapplying to the foundations again as we know that first-time applicants rarely win. Saidiana looks forward to the growth opportunities we have identified in 2021.

2020 Statement of Activities

Revenue

Individual Contributions: $44,618

Total Revenue Contributions: $44,618

Expenses

Personnel: $16,000
Contract Services: $9,978
Supplies & Expenses: $5,651
Fees: $444
Grants: $21,000
Other: $2,566

Total Expenses: $55,639
Net Income: ($11,021)

Functional Expenses

Programming: 75% ($42,006)
Fundraising: 13% ($7,393)
Administration: 11% ($6,240)

Total Functional Expenses: $55,639

Fundraising in 2020 was a challenge with restrictions and uncertainty from the Covid-19 pandemic. However, at the end of 2019, we had strategically put ourselves in a strong financial position to fund and grow our programs in the Congo. Fundraising is expected to offset grant expenses next year as the world recovers from the impacts of Covid-19. In an unprecedented strategy, we engaged JMurphy & Associates to explore fundraising options and grant writing. This provided us a baseline and education on fundraising through these avenues.  We are reapplying to the foundations again as we know that first-time applicants rarely win. Saidiana looks forward to the growth opportunities we have identified in 2021.

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