Directors of the Tamara Foundation had the privilege of meeting Doris Olafsen through a joint partnership concerning the work of another not-for-profit board. When Doris transitioned to Opportunity International, she was confident that the Tamara Foundation’s purpose to help disadvantaged and devalued women and their families would be a good match with Opportunity International’s project to assist poor women in Bihar, India, spearheaded by Opportunity International Australia. Although the majority of grants from the Tamara Foundation are directed locally and within Canada, we have assisted in funding several international projects. This project caught our interest and we knew we had to be involved. In June 2017, the Tamara Foundation granted $108,000 towards the Bihar, India Project.
In November of 2018, two directors of the Tamara Foundation traveled to Bihar, India and were impressed by Opportunity International’s work. The Tamara Foundation is continuing to contribute to this project, and we are excited to see how it is going to assist others further.
Since 2016, the Tamara Foundation has been compassionately involved in helping to kick start a sustainable path out of poverty for some of India’s poorest families.
Families that are being supported by a single mom. The Foundation has provided compassionate capital that is empowering these women – helping them to increase their income and support their families with the basic necessities of life; shelter, health, sanitation and education. They have also provided funding for many of the 4000 plus entrepreneurs who have also been trained as health leaders. These women are reaching families in their communities with simple but life-changing health, hygiene and nutrition information.
The health entrepreneur aims to equip their communities with hard to access health products – including sanitary napkins, hand soap, dishwashing liquid and toilet cleaner. Behind the scenes, this means bridging the last mile in supply chains to create local access to vital health products, in quantities families can afford. The Tamara Foundation recognizes that it is strategic and compassionate philanthropy that will be the game-changer for India. With small loans to grow small businesses, alongside other community development services, their giving is transforming lives for generations to come.
Doris Olafsen – VP Philanthropy
It has been such a pleasure to be able to partner with Opportunity International and those they work with, to assist women in Bihar, India who are learning how to support themselves financially.
Establishing a higher standard of health and personal wellness is also part of Opportunity International’s goal as 70% of illnesses that claim lives or impact overall well-being in a developing country can be prevented. With proper knowledge and improved health services, the prevention and treatment of these illnesses can be an accessible solution no matter the individual’s background or financial position.
Opportunity International Australia’s program partner, Healing Fields Foundation, is also educating and helping women become health leaders in their homes and communities. Women receive training in basic health, hygiene, and nutrition education, so that they may be able to influence those around them. It is a pleasure to be able to work with organizations that recognize the issues that need to be solved, and who choose to empower and educate women so that they may be able to be a part of the solution.