Sunday, November 27, 2011

Happy Anniversary Center

The center just celebrated its 7th birthday. Seven years in which it has grown from 20 to 300 children. Seven years of trial and error, of near shut downs and rescues. Seven years of joy, laughter, tears, theft, fire, donations, support, disappointment, surprise and mostly...300 children getting food and schooling!

That calls for a party!

Alex's opening speech
Doing a dance for the guests

Birthday cake! Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Red Dress Run Huge Success: Raising Over 6 million Ariary

Dear All,
A big thanks to everybody who made that first ever RED DRESS RUN a huge success and most important a funny day.
Please send me your pictures of that day on CD or on Web and read this email to the end.
Un immense merci à tout un chacun pour avoir fait de ce premier RED DRESS RUN un succès mais plus important une journée très amusante.
Merci de m’envoyer vos photos sur CD ou sur Web et n’oubliez pas de lire cet email jusqu’à la fin. developpement.jpgRDR group.jpg


our sponsors :
SKOL (which financed the beer, the beer stop, the food provided by Café de la Gare, the goodies, the T-shirts,….)
Falck from Europe (Thanks Thijs, yes we will never Falck alone)
Madarail developpement for providing the great secured Soarano facilities in the heart of Tana.
nos sponsors :
SKOL, qui a financé non seulement la bière mais le beer stop, les cadeaux, les brochettes fournies par Café de la Gare, les T-shirts,..)
Falck depuis l’Europe (merci Thijs, oui nous ne falckerons jamais seuls)
Madarail Developpement pour nous avoir donné accès à ce superbe site sécurisé de la Gare de Saorano en plein centre ville.

(The total budget of the day was around 4.5 millions ariary!). So thanks again.
(Le budget total de cette journée fût d’environ 4,5 millions d’ariary !). Encore merci.

All the Hashers/friends who moved their ass to collect some money for the charity Hash fund raising:
Tous les hashers/amis qui se sont mobilisés pour récolter des fonds pour ce Hash spécial œuvres caritatives :

Sheep Shager-Cheap Hot Spot, Blue soccer, Le Pimp, Comatose, Nicolette, Heiko-Catherine, Johnson and Johnsen, Taquita, Multilingus, Susan, BB-AA, SD-Talented Tongue, High Millage, I am Game, Jeremie-Ietje, Counting Nurse-Jeroboam The Thirst, Joana-Keke, Randy (ou Randa?), Kinky Reggae, Alyssia, Antonie-Christian

All our individual sponsors:
Tous nos parrains, sponsors individuels:

Falck (Thijs), Will, Mike-Laurie, Roger-Tania, Pierrot-Marie Pierrot, Joe-Rachel, Olivier, Ken, Joni, Roger-Hasi, Suzie, Dave, Soline, Jacques, Minou-Michou, Kim, Sarah, Katell, Jennifer, Pieter, Ada, Pascale, Ariane, Herman-Ans, Kristi, Thibault, Mathieu, Pinkaka, Marketa, Sidne, Julie, Patricia, Kara, Flip Flop, Jean-Marie, Loïc, Audrey, Maylis, Simon, Annette, Jeff-Rose-Sofia, Amanda, Connie, Mijntje
Bernard, Elly, Sabine, Yume-Ryota, Monika, Krishna-Muriel, Anne, Tina, Jaap, Joëlle, Naoko, Jean Lee, Ximena, Emmanuel, Natasha, Soary, Georges, Joana, Malanto, Fanja, Claude, Alphonse, Suzette, Tahina

We have raised for our 2 charity institutions:
Nous avons collecté pour nos deux actions caritatives :

6.500.000 Ariary
We will keep you posted about the final payments (stay connected to our website)
Nous vous tiendrons au courant de leur utilisation (restez branchés sur notre site Web)

And last but not least, a deep hashy thanks to the mismanagement committee, thanks guys, we did it and it was fun all way long
(please convey this email to your individual sponsors)
Part of the mismanagement in action preparing the RED DRESS RUN.

Visit us at
To answer: send an email to
To unsubscribe: send an e-mail to

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Red Dress Run Coming Up!

This Sunday 6 November, we will organize a red dress run to raise more money for the center. The idea is that we walk or run in a red dress, men and women, in down town Tana. We have sponsorship from corporate companies, and the individual walkers and runners will have themselves sponsored by friends, colleagues and families!

If you are in Tana: JOIN US

If you are abroad: SPONSOR US!

Thank and ON ON

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Famous Fete du Pain

Today was a very special day for the center. We were invited to participate at la Fete du Pain, a big event at the train station in Tana, organized by LMM - Les Moulins de Madagascar - a large flour mill in Antsirabe. The objective of the day was to promote flour, and bread, and cakes, and rolls, and baguettes, and croissants, and..... Well you get the picture, right?

You may wonder why such basic products like flour and bread need any special promotion in Madagacar?
General rehearsal, Wednesday 4.35 PM
Well, that is because Madagascar is traditionally a rice-consuming nation. It's rice, rice and rice again here. Three times per day prefarably.

LMM reopened his mill in Antisrabe a few months ago, and to celebrate this event they organized a day with baking demonstrations, speaches, workshops for bakers, and the like.

As I am friends with Mark and Karen Reed, he is the administrateur general de LMM,sometime in June we were brainstorming about this day.  I then proposed that the streetchildren of the Akanifitahiani center could make hand-embroidered sacs a baguette. as a nice give-away for the invitees. They liked the idea, and more even, they asked the children to come and sing some songs, and Alex to make a speach to promote the center.

The Real Deal...this morning Thursday 11.55 AM

So there I am breaking my head over finding a song in French that has anything to do with bread. Then Michel helps my out...Joe Dassin's famous Petit Pain Au Chocolat! Yes, got it. So we rehearse and rehearse. We ven went for general rehearsal on stage yesterday.

Today was the big day. The LMM bus picked up the kids at 11 AM, we dressed them in their LMM caps and t-shirts and went on stage. The sang like nightingales!

And as far as their preference for rice or bread concerns...these pictures speak for themselves!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Good News and Bad News

Which one you want first? The bad news is that there has been a burglary in Alex's office (annex bedroom, annex living room) and three laptops were stolen. Apart from the hardware, a lot of files have been lost: book keeping stuff, the new website which was almost ready, and the foster parents files. There was no back up...We learn everyday. Alex is helping the police to track down the thieves, some sort of gang in the neighborhood. He has many sleepless night. Poor guy...

The good news is that the first harvest of produce from the countryside sister project has arrived! Tomatoes tomatoes tomatoes!

Monday, August 22, 2011

SOS - Fire Destroyed 110 Homes near the Center

A very very sad thing happened last week night Thursday. There was a big fire in the township of  Andranomahery in Ankorondrano neigborhood where the center is located. Out of the 110 houses, 90 have been destroyed, leaving 700 people without a roof, of which 500 children. Some of those children are part of the center. Some of the parents are host-parents of the orphaned children

The community is helping with some tents, but there is an enormous need for day to day objects like food, clothes, mattresses, blankets, kitchen utensils, buckets etc.  

Alex and the staff of the center are raising cash and kind to help out. 

Your donation would be very welcome...I have not yet seen the disaster as I am still in Belgium, but we'll go by the end of this week to see and assess the situation.

On behalf of the center, Alex and the children
T H  A N  K     Y  O  U

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Akany Fitahiana receives 1.6 million Ariary from American School Antananarivo

After a succesful food fair, organized by the PTO (Parent - Teacher Organization) of the American School of Antananarivo (ASA), the center received a generous donation of 1.600.000 Ariary. The money will be spent on teacher's salaries and rice: the most essential running costs.

Alex and one of the teachers, Miora, receiving the cheque from Jennifer, board member of ASA

p.s. 1.6 million Ariary is about 580 euro or 820 USD!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

A Field Trip with Teachers and Children

By: Fide, 12 years (translated by Susanne).

We went on a fields trip yesterday. Mr Alex asked us to come along. We got a ride with Madame Susanne in the car. The road was bumpy, we laughed a lot.

About 80 ducklings are growing up to become ducks. 

Then we came to the village. Mr Alex showed us the caneton project (ducklings). The lady opened the door of the duck house, and woooshhh, they all came out waggling. There are 79 ducks now, from the 120 ducklings that Mr Alex bought. The ducks will lay eggs and we can eat them.

Then we took a boat to cross the river. I was scared because I can not swim. We had a picknick. The Chinese lady had made 'dumplings', we had never tasted before. It was very nice.

A scary boat ride as most can not swim

Alex handing out dumplings made by Hasi. I am the child in middle with blue jacket
1/3 of these beans are for centre, 1/3 for the rural families and 1/3 for seeds

Monday, May 23, 2011

NEW: income generation in the center for street children!

After three months of preparation,the Akani Fitahiani center has opened a workshop to make school uniforms. They have four sewing machines, two if which are still rented. If we can generate enough income the center can buy the machines.

They are making uniforms for every boy and girl of the center. They also produce sports costumes.

This young boy is helping to make napkins. About forty children of the center help embroidery and crocheing. We're looking forward their work.

Friday, February 4, 2011

The First School Benches Have Arrived

Yes! Super! The children of the center no longer have to sit on the floor! Thank you to Pete, Mieke, Ietje, Saskia, Delphine and Helene. Alex is very proud of his new class room. We even had money to pay for some black boards!

Other classrooms will follow soon!