Hello movement members,
I wanted to drop you a quick note about some upcoming fundraising campaign and communication changes. Over the next few weeks, we will be merging the fundraising campaign for the Endure Primary School with the campaign for the new Renewal High School. This merge will be handled by our staff and requires no action on your part as a fundraiser, donor, or recurring donor. Moving forward, there will be a single campaign that raises funds for both schools. Our commitment to Endure Primary and Renewal High remains as strong as ever, and merging campaigns will help us better meet that commitment.
All donations and fundraising pages on the Endure Campaign will be migrated to the Stand For Education Campaign by the end of April. The Stand For Education campaign will then be updated to reflect that the campaign raises funds for both schools. Then, we all move forward together.
Why The Change?
There are a few different reasons why we will be merging the campaigns:
Our Campaigns Must Reflect Reality
Operation Broken Silence and our education program have changed a lot since we first started sponsoring Endure Primary in early 2015. But positive change in our education program has led to some communication and fundraising sprawl as we've plowed ahead on the ground underneath the leadership of our Nuba education partner.
What began as a mission to keep a tiny, 4-classroom primary school from closing in 2015 has morphed into our Nuba education partner essentially creating a rudimentary school system in Yida Refugee Camp from scratch. Fun fact: our education program in Yida has grown a whopping 1,700% percent since 2015. That's real progress that only happened because of your fundraising and giving.
The past few weeks our small team has gotten a much-needed chance to catch our breath, reexamine some current practices, and take a hard look at the current reality of now having two schools we are fiscally responsible for. The result is that we've learned we need to simplify some of our fundraising and communication practices, so that the teachers, students, and you as movement members can be better served by us. Think of it like pruning a healthy plant: we're cutting back some branches so that we can continue growing and remain healthy.
Merging our two education fundraising campaigns into one will better streamline our combined efforts and make it more clear to newcomers that Endure Primary and Renewal High are part of the same education program.
Both Schools Will Be Treated With Equal Value
Since we announced that we are helping our Nuba education partner open a new high school in Yida, there has been much more interest in supporting Renewal High than Endure Primary. We get it. You as our movement members are very excited that Yida is getting a desperately-needed second high school, and the students and teachers even more so. That is a good thing!
However, the students and teachers at Endure Primary are just as important and require ongoing support as well. Rather than telling our movement members they can support only one school with their fundraising and giving, we want to ensure you can easily support both at the same time through a single campaign. It's more fair to you, the teachers, and the students if there is a united campaign that fundraising and giving happens through. Everyone wins!
Our Staff Can Better Serve You
One piece of feedback I get when newcomers visit our website, social media, and fundraising campaigns is that they think we are a juggernaut nonprofit that raises millions of dollars a year. Newcomers to Operation Broken Silence are usually stunned when they discover we only have two full-time staff and accomplish a lot with very little alongside of our Sudanese partners. We are definitely a well-oiled machine that regularly punches above our weight, but there is a lot our staff does behind the scenes every day to keep all the gears moving.
Merging our two education fundraising campaigns will reduce some of the steps our staff has to take every week to keep your fundraising efforts humming along. This will put a few hours of time back into our schedules each week to spend recruiting new movement members and helping our current ones better achieve their goals. It may not seem like much, but any additional time Audrey and I can reclaim from outdated processes and procedures goes a long way in reducing the burden on everyone: our Sudanese partners, ourselves, and you.
As always, if you have questions or concerns you can reach us at info [at] operationbrokensilence [dot] org. Talk to you soon.
Mark C. Hackett
The people of Sudan are overcoming two of the greatest challenges facing humanity today: war and genocide. Operation Broken Silence is accelerating their ability to generate lasting change by funding storytelling and movement-building, education and emergency response, and grassroots advocacy programs. Here are a few ways you can join us:
1. Give Monthly To The Education In Yida. The Renewal is our unstoppable family of monthly givers who never stop fighting for change. They give automatically each and every month to the two schools we sponsor in Yida Refugee Camp, providing consistent support to 24 teachers and nearly 1,100 students. Monthly givers who donate $25+ a month also get free tickets to our two annual events! LEARN MORE »
2. Become A Fundraiser. If you can't give monthly right now but have some time to spare, you can start an online fundraising page for the schools in Yida or Mother of Mercy Hospital in the Nuba Mountains warzone. BECOME A FUNDRAISER »
3. Give Once. Not ready to commit with a monthly gift or fundraising yet? That's okay, making a one-time gift is the best next step to get your feet wet! GIVE HERE »
Mark began working on Sudan issues in 2007 after an eye-opening conversation with a genocide survivor from Darfur, Sudan. Since 2011 he has overseen the steady growth of our organization.
Mark makes sure our on the ground programs stay on the rails and that our movement remains focused on our end goal of closing our doors one day. He’s one of only a few Americans to have been in frontline areas in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan during the war.