As this newsletter illustrates, The Helen Loewenstein Memorial Trust has made real progress during the past few months. This, despite Covid restrictions and ongoing caution about the virus, which have significantly limited the number of activities that HLMT has been able to run this year.
Esther Bacon School of Nursing and Midwifery, Liberia – latest developments
The two HLMT-sponsored students, Aminata Sumanie and Suah Valai continue to make excellent progress and have passed all academic courses with flying colours. Willimai Weetol, the Director of the Esther Bacon School, reported, “Suah and Aminata met the academic requirements and are now ready to start the clinical phase along with the theoretical for the Midwifery program.” The level and quality of communication with the Esther Bacon School and the information on student progress are very high.
Interviews for the next academic year’s students take place in September, with Abdul Bah representing HLMT on the panel.
The Delta variant of Covid-19 is in Liberia and has affected social, health and economic conditions. Availability of Covid vaccinations has been limited.
Decisions on number of HLMT – students in 2021–2022
At their July meeting, HLMT Trustees agreed that the Trust could fund two further Liberian midwifery students from Trust funds. They also decided to make an appeal to HLMT supporters to fund a further place. The appeal was very successful. One anonymous supporter donated £2,500, which will support one student for three years; and fourteen other supporters donated a further £2,500, to fund a further place. They included Graham and Janet Bennett, Lisa Clarkson, Mike Peverill, Margareta Lindgren and Roger and Sue van Schaick. This means that, in total, HLMT will sponsor a total of six students in 2021-2022– a fantastic accolade to our supporters. Thank you!
Nottingham Green Festival, Sunday 12th September 2021 noon to 6.00 p.m.
HLMT will have a stall at the festival, featuring a wide variety of indoor and outdoor plants, Liberian Lapa fabric handmade greetings cards, bags, bunting, lavender bags, cushion covers, dresses, skirts and shirts, arts and crafts, jewellery and much more! We ask all Nottingham supporters to come and say hello at the stall. You’ll find the festival at the Arboretum, Waverley Street, NG7 4HF. Further details can be found at www.nottmgreenfest.org.uk .
HLMT social media developments
Following the appeal in our last newsletter, a supporter, Russell Taylor, kindly offered to take on our social media presence and has got things going. We encourage all supporters to share the links below with family and friends and to “like” the pages of the platforms, to help spread awareness of HLMT.
· Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/HLMemorial
· Instragram – @HLMT_Charity
· Twitter – @HLMT_Charity
HLMT Annual Meeting held on 21st April 2021
HLMT Trustees held this meeting online, at which a draft annual report and annual accounts were presented and discussed. These will be posted on the HLMT website as soon as the accounts have been externally examined, hopefully in the coming month.
In the next 18 months or two years, HLMT hopes to have reached our initial target of £100,000. This should lead us to a position where return on the investment will begin to fund the annual training of students in Liberia.
A further online Trustee’s meeting was held in July 2021.
HLMT investment policy
Donations and standing orders will continue to form the backbone of HLMT’s work. So that the funds do not eventually run out, however, rather than fund students directly out of these donations, some of the income needs to be invested, and the returns on the investments used to provide student bursaries. In this way, ultimately HLMT will have a sound basis to provide bursaries into the future. At their July 2021 meeting HLMT Trustees unanimously approved the proposal:
- To invest around £40,000 in ethical low risk markets as one portfolio with diverse funds to build longer term financial viability.
- To secure four years’ financial commitments in a ready access or current account which will yield no interest; and to place the balance in a series of fixed term building society bonds ( 3, 4 and 5 years) to cover the later years’ costs at the best market rates that we can find. A four year reserves policy was agreed.
If you work for an organisation that might be able to sponsor HLMT – an appeal
If you (or one of your family or friends) happen to work for or are involved with a large company/organisation (e.g. a church/charity etc.) that has a charitable arm or an adopted charity, we’d ask you to please put HLMT forward for consideration as an organisation to be funded.
Standing orders, donations and bequeaths in wills
HLMT plans are to increase the number of Liberian midwifery students it sponsors from year to year. A key basis of our fundraising is the regular Standing Orders and one-off donations from supporters, for which we are so grateful. Whilst we hope that all of our supporters have long and happy lives, we would also be very grateful if you feel able to include HLMT in your will! For now, it would be tremendous if you can please set up a Standing Order, no matter how small or large, if you have not already done so. https://hlmt.org.uk/hlmt-Standing-Order-Mandate.pdf . Please return the form to us and not to your bank.
We depend on this regular income to do our work – in the last Covid-limited year, this has been crucial.
As always, a massive “thank you” to everyone who supports the work of The Helen Loewenstein Memorial Trust.