Give the Gift of Maternal Health with Cuso International #CusoCAN

At this time of year, our family is grateful for all we have especially each other. As a mom, I am especially grateful for my daughter. She has been such a huge blessing and I was blessed to give birth to her with the best of care from a wonderful team in New Mexico. My niece recently gave birth and my family has been enjoying spoiling the newest little one who has blessed our family. Some mothers are no so lucky. Those of us who live in North America are blessed to have the best care possible. In places like Ethopia that is not the case always. Cuso International is a charity making a difference in this area.

In Pawe, a small community in rural Ethiopia, mothers like Abeba have their babies in health centres that aren’t equipped for unexpected circumstances. Simple challenges that seem like a small hiccup in the labour process here can lead to tragedy. The health professionals don’t always have specialized training, and infection and life threating complications are common. Thankfully something is being done!


A Canadian midwife is making a difference


Jennica, a midwife from BC, volunteered to live in Pawe to help share her skills and knowledge with the doctors and midwives at Pawe Health Centre. She worked with the doctors and midwives to use monitors to help identify babies in distress. Digital monitoring is so common place here, you’d probably have a hard time finding someone who wasn’t monitored for at least part of her labour at the hospital. So, it’s easy to forget that this simple process can mean the difference between a life saved and a life lost.

Trained volunteers like Jennica save lives


Cuso International is a charity that has been sending volunteers around the world to help communities thrive and grow. The Maternal Health program, like the one in Pawe, is helping to save the lives of moms like Abeba and countless other women and little ones that are home with their families this holiday. With more training and better hospital practices, health workers in Pawe can recognize danger signs earlier, treat them faster, and help more moms deliver their babies safely.


You can help too

While you’re sharing this time with your family, you can help ensure that mothers around the world can do the same. The Cuso CAN Fund was established to give you the chance to support Cuso International’s high priority maternal and child health projects in Ethiopia, Benin, Tanzania, Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo. In all these places, pregnant and labouring moms need the kind of trained, compassionate care you had when you delivered your children. Help send Canadian medical volunteers into communities to save the lives of moms and babies this holiday season and through out the year.







Micro-Volunteering comes to Canada with Koodonation

Volunteering for Haiti © by cambodia4kidsorg

Have you heard about Canada’s first online microvolunteering community:  Today Koodo is supporting a social change movement that is redefining volunteering across Canada. An entirely not-for-profit, grassroots community, supported and powered by Koodo, allows consumers and Canadian charities to work together where a huge percentage of Canadians spend their time – online — with the concept of microvolunteering.

Microvolunteering is volunteerism built for the social media generation. It gives us web savvy Canadians the opportunity to make a huge contribution to Canadian not-for-profit and charity organizations, right from our computers, in 15 minutes or less. With microvolunteering, volunteering becomes a purely online-activity which can be done any time the volunteer has a spare moment: before work; during a study break; or simply on a free evening at home.

Small online acts of charity add up to big social change

Microvolunteering tasks are designed to take a short period of time, typically 15 minutes to two hours, but help not-for-profit organizations to very quickly and easily crowd-source solutions through a range of high-impact challenges and questions such as disaster or emergency relief, fundraising ideas, social media strategy, copywriting, graphic design, and much more.

Koodonation has already been embraced by some of Canada’s most respected charity and not-for-profit organizations including; Canadian Feed the Children; Kids Help Phone; Sustainable Waterloo; Canadian Animal Assistance Team; and Students Offering Support — and more are joining every day.

Koodonation has also been embraced by some of Canada’s best sports and entertainment personalities including MTV Live Co-Host Sheena Snively, Jeremy Taggart of the iconic Canadian rock back Our Lady Peace, Daniel Johnson, member of the break-out Canadian band Stereos, Toronto Argonaut Mike Bradwell, and one of Canada’s top social media personalities, blogger Casie Stewart. In the true spirit of this campaign, each of these personalities is volunteering their time at a charity competition between Ontario colleges and universities, which will launch Koodonation in Toronto toay Thursday, October 13, 2011. This event happens at Yonge/Dundas Square from 11-3.  As a thank you for their support, is making a $20,000 contribution to a charity of their choice. When I soke to Casie recently she was having a hard time choosing who she was going to gift.

Koodonation is powered by, San Francisco-based pioneers of microvolunteering. Operating similar microvolunteering communities in the U.S., and the microvolunteering concept have been celebrated by the TED community . You can watch this great TED talk all about volunteering.

Ben Rigby – Micro-Volunteering – Giving Back for Busy People

“We’re thrilled to partner with Koodo to launch Canada’s first-ever microvolunteering network,” says Ben Rigby, CEO of “Backed by Koodo’s unparalleled knowledge of the Canadian market, will transform the not-for-profit landscape in Canada by leveraging the skills, expertise, and know-how of Canadian citizens.”

Nearly 90 per cent of Canadians aged 15 to 34 use the internet*
51 per cent of Canadian 18-34 year olds volunteer or fundraise for charities
47 per cent of Canadian 18 -34 year olds volunteer at least once per month
More than 64 per cent of Canadian 18-34 year olds prefer to support causes within their community and Canada

*Internet usage statistic courtesy of Library of Parliament, all others courtesy of Koodo Mobile

Think.  It’s easy. It’s fun. And it makes a difference.

Do you have 15 minutes to spare for a good cause? If yes check out Koodonation.


New Family Member

For the past number of days I have been following a friend who has been blogging from Africa about Compassion’s work over there. The pictures and videos spoke to my heart and my daughters as well . We see how very lucky we are. How even though by Canadian standards we are considered poor by many we are actually very wealthy by world standards. We made a commitment to sponsor a child…her name is Chelsea and she is now part of our family! For the cost of a can of diet coke or a cup of coffee and a muffin a day you could really help a child and their family become self sufficient… I couldn’t help but think of something that was recently by a very wise man.. “we live in a knowledge based world, and the best way to become self sufficient is through eduction”…so my hats and prayers are with the bloggers who went…they really showed us how blessed and lucky we are!