When we first heard from Catapult in mid 2012, we were so excited to be invited to join the kind of platform they were aiming to be.
Crowd Sourcing is a concept that appealed to us at Roots of Health from the start. It’s a good way to give groups of our friends and supporters a chance to work together to support specific parts of our work. Having been a Catapult partner for almost a year now, it has been gratifying to know that crowds are validating our work by fully funding our projects!
The title for the project came from a woman in one of our communities, who said she had noticed more smiling faces, “flat bellies,” and fewer pregnancies in her community since Roots of Health started providing reproductive health education and clinical services.We are a small reproductive health organization operating in Palawan, a rural part of the Philippines. It can be difficult to spread the word about the work we’re doing. Catapult has been an incredible support to us as they have helped us get new funding from people across the world, who otherwise we would never have been able to connect with.
We’ve been part of Catapult from the very beginning and have really enjoyed the helpful attention of the Catapult team. Our work is wide-ranging—encompassing communities and schools. However, our projects on Catapult have been small and specific to boost our chances of being fully funded.
For example, our project “Flat Bellies and Planned Pregnancies” was one of the first projects on the site to be fully funded! The title for the project came from a woman in one of our communities, who said she had noticed more smiling faces, “flat bellies,” and fewer pregnancies in her community since Roots of Health started providing reproductive health education and clinical services. The project helped us raise funds for contraceptives that we provided for free in order to enable women in the community to take control of their bodies and decide if and when they want to become pregnant.
Another project, “Gardening for Health,” was also funded early. With the funding for this project, we distributed “vertical gardens” to our clients. The gardens are made of recycled oil drums and filled with nutrient-rich, well-composted soil that can be used to plant nourishing, healthy vegetables. Many of our community members cannot afford to buy these vertical gardens outright—although we do ask them to pay a modest leasing fee—so we applied for funding to support the effort.
Our first Catapult project helped us distribute 52 gardens in Aplaya, a small community by the sea where people have no green space for planting. A few months later, Catapult helped us fund a second vertical gardens project in another community!
On October 11, the International Day of the Girl, we are planning to host host games and activities for young people that highlight reproductive health as well as self-esteem issues. During the day’s activities, we will distribute prizes that Catapult made it possible for us to buy!
We could not be more thrilled with how successful Catapult has been in its first year. The money we have raised through our Catapult funding campaigns has helped us increase our reserve fund so we can continue making change in the Palawan community. We are so excited to continue working with the Catapult community to provide reproductive health education and services to women and young people here in Palawan.
Congratulations to Catapult and Happy Day of the Girl!