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A Week with Janne in Review...
17th to 20th April 2018

Our committee members and silk sales volunteers completed an exhausting and exhilarating week with Janne, and we thank each and every one for their support resulting in a successful week for Tabitha Singapore.  Tabitha founder Janne Ritskes visited us from Cambodia, and we were delighted to have her speak at our Tabitha @ Home silk sale on Thursday 19th April.

Much of Janne's week was spent visiting a variety of schools in Singapore.  Meeting with students and inspiring them is a passion. She is adept at providing clear and concise overviews of the history of Cambodia, explaining the situation and reality of Cambodians today, along with the challenges they face. She provides an understanding of what a poverty mindset is - that despite working hard, food, shelter, education are not readily available to all, and the key element of hope is absent.

Students (and adults) of all ages gained inspiration for ways that they can help those, who have simply been born into less fortunate circumstances, to regain control of their futures and empower them in their journey out of poverty. Inspiration for housebuilding possibilities, and fundraising challenges were proffered. Simple and consistent steps to help one family at a time has been the backbone of Tabitha Cambodia's success for over 20 years - and students understood that action, however small it may feel, can make a difference.

These topics and more were addressed at various schools including OFS (Overseas Family School) grades 9-11 ; UWCSEA East (United World College) grade 9; SAS (Singapore American School) grade 5 & 1, & AIS (Australian International School) grade 4. 

Special highlights included the presenting of an incredible $16,000 cheque by SAS grade 5 students who had orchestrated and completed a “Jumpathon” fundraiser. Janne informed the students that their spectacular effort would translate into 533 families being supported in the Tabitha savings program.  And with AIS due to hold its annual Mother’s Day Tabitha silk sale, students were reminded how much impact the simple act of purchasing a gift from the stall has on the Cambodian silk cottage industry; Cambodian women are able to maintain a dignified job that provides regular income allowing them to step out from poverty and support their families.

This of course reflects the goals of Tabitha’s main silk sales held throughout the year. At our recent Home Silk Sale on 19th April, Janne highlighted the new pendants now available - statement pieces of a bicycle, sewing machine, rooster, house, pig, water pump, & spinning wheel. These represent the goals & key income-generating items that Cambodian families aspire to own - and achieve - through their hard work and perseverance in Tabitha’s family savings program.  Each pendant sold supports a family’s participation in the program for 1 year. Wear a pig pendant and proudly share that this represents the Cambodian family I have helped this year. 
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