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What’s in our October 2020 Newsletter: Into Africa Auction was a SUCCESS! Notes from the Field ~ COVID-19 Update

Teamwork makes the dream work. ~ Bang Gae 

Into Africa Auction was a SUCCESS!

Dear P4P Friend,

We love the phrase “it takes a village” referring to the collaboration and coordination necessary to accomplish big things. Never was that credo more evident than this year’s Into Africa Auction. Thanks to P4P’s volunteer auction team, three part time staffers, sponsors, businesses that contributed auction items and all of you who shopped and generously donated to our programs, we raised $51,500 (after expenses). 

These funds will help support P4P’s programs in health, education, economic development and water/sanitation in Kenya, and we are immensely grateful to all of you.

This year’s auction was drastically different than past galas. When it became apparent that our annual fundraiser and social could not be held in person, we quickly pivoted to a virtual format. This was no small feat. Bringing experience to the event were Co-Chair Vicky Markussen who produced the livestreaming program and Co-Chair Linda Hagen Miller who kept the team on track from software selection to deliveries. These two women signed up for an in-person African gala and wound up leading P4P's first virtual auction.  They did it with flexibility and persistence, a gazillion emails, and courage when facing the unknown.

You can watch portions of the live auction on our YouTube channel.

Founders Stacey Mainer and Sandy Ivers talk from the heart about P4P's mission and programs.

Co-Chairs Vicky Markussen and Linda Hagen Miller would like to thank everyone who supported Into Africa, and we want to say a special asante sana to:

Our silent auction, virtual wizard and videographer, Andie Young, who managed to navigate with grace and patience as she set up the Auctria software and made the dozens of changes we requested.

Lee Fowler, P4P part time administrative assistant, organizer extraordinaire, creator of lists and spreadsheets, newsletter and eblast graphic designer. She is a talented, organized woman who assisted with all the nuts and bolts for the event. 

Dia Maurer, P4P Executive Director. How this woman maintained her sanity, diplomacy and tact during the chaos of a steep learning curve and new fundraising platform in addition to her normal responsibilities, is beyond astounding. As always, she helped steer the virtual auction to success.

Annie Gokey, who has been on the auction committee for years, once again took over data input. All the while juggling a full-time job and small children in the midst of a pandemic. 

Rose Backs, who served as our auctioneer, is a professional who knows how to work a crowd, but she’s also compassionate, curious and thoughtful. She took the time to learn about P4P, to incorporate our key words and messages in her script, and to understand our mission. She even asked what color she should wear for the event.

David, Rose's assistant, who handled all the crucial, technical aspects and kept the chat room going with fun comments and his exuberant personality.

Gordon Jackson, Stacey Mainer, Sandy Ivers, Dia Maurer, Nereah Obura and Robert Masaga for their welcoming, heartfelt video contributions.

Eileen Dugger and Patti Krafft -- what a team. The two of them procured amazing auction items, attended almost every auction meeting, stored and sorted items and gathered numerous gift certificates. Their time and efforts truly paid off.

Mark Kartchner, Stacey Mainer, Eileen Dugger, Patti Krafft, Pam Reilly, Annie Gokey, Megan Hershey, Dia Maurer and Lee Fowler who texted or called P4P supporters to urge them to bid, attend, donate and otherwise support P4P.

Jasmine Albinson and Linda Jones of Desautel Hege who donated their time and talents to creating the graphic design elements that we used throughout the auction. 

Eryn Brooks, whose short video created a couple of years ago, fit perfectly into the program.

Everyone who created a basket or procured auction items and all the businesses who generously lent their support.

Our very own "UPS team", volunteers who drove all over the county and crossed the state line to deliver auction items to winners. Big thanks to Eileen Dugger and Dia Maurer, who organized the group and made deliveries themselves, plus Stacey Mainer, Patti Krafft, Nancy Englund, Gordon Jackson and Kay Ely.

And last, but certainly not least, our sponsors. Without their generous underwriting, Into Africa Auction would not have been nearly as successful.

Asante Sana,
Vicky Markussen and Linda Hagen Miller

Thank you to our generous sponsors!

Report from the Field - COVID 19 Update
By Nereah Obura, P4P Kenya Program Coordinator

I have encouraging news. Kenya is currently below the 5 percent positivity rate recommended by WHO for reopening. The first COVID–19 case was reported in March and as of October 1, the number of infections was 38,713. Approximately 25,000 people have recovered, 711 people have died. Unfortunately, we do not have statistics for everyone who was infected.

During the pandemic, P4P has distributed 450 baskets of food.  Each basket contains basic necessities including maize, beans, cooking oil, sugar, salt and one bar of soap. Recipients were very appreciative of the food baskets and offered the following comments:

“We are going to wash, to fry and have something to cook. May the Lord bless the hand that has given.”

“I slept hungry yesterday, I did not have any hope of eating today, I am very grateful for what I have received today.”

As Kenya moves forward, hand washing, social distancing and mask wearing are strongly encouraged. A curfew remains in effect from 11:00 pm to 4:00 am, bars and restaurants can stay open till 10:00 pm, religious gatherings have been increased to one third of normal seating capacity, and up to 200 people are permitted to attend funerals and weddings. School reopening is under discussion.

Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta cautioned, “The greatest danger is always at the moment of victory.’’

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