Fundacio Hogar Infantil Madre de Dios Orphanage
Cali, Columbia
 
Past President Tony Zuloaga presents a McMurray Rotary flag to
Sister Elsa Maria Alyana accompanied by teachers, staff and children
 
The McMurray Rotary has been supporting the Fundacion Hogar Infantil Madre de Dios orphanage in Cali, Colombia for many years.  This orphanage serves an impoverished area plagued with unemployment, drugs, prostitution, lack of education, alcoholism, etc.
 
The orphanage currently houses over 100 boys and girls, aged from newborn to 18 years old. The children are provided with education, health care, food, clothing, recreation, and moral and religious values in a caring and loving environment.
 
 
The orphanage has been run by Sister Elsa Maria Ayala since 2003 when the orphanage moved to its current location. They do not receive public funds and must rely on charitable organizations, such as our club, individual donors, and volunteers for funding their needs, which are ongoing and constantly growing as the children keep coming in.
 
Our support of the orphanage has been done in many ways. Initially, for a few years, we sent shoeboxes filled with items such as toothbrushes, tooth paste, small toys, candy, school supplies, etc.  However, there were problems encountered in getting these materials through Columbian customs and that effort had to be abandoned.
 
Following that we applied for a  Rotary District Simplified Grant and were able to get a projector for the orphanage. In 2008 we applied for a Matching Grant from The Rotary Foundation in collaboration with the Rotary Club of Cali, Colombia and with the assistance of our District and were able to raise a total of $35,000.00 to purchase a van (photo below) for the orphanage, which provided a much needed means of transportation not only for the children to be taken to and from school, to doctor's appointments, etc., but also for the staff to go to the supermarket and other places to get the necessary supplies for their daily operation.  Prior to obtaining the van they had to rely on other people to be available with their vehicles to transport children and staff.
 
in 2010 we applied for another Matching Grant again with the collaboration of the Rotary Club of Cali, and with funds from our District, and were able to get a total of $12,000.00 to purchase cribs, bedding, clothing and other needed items for the orphanage.
 
In February, 2013 we received another grant from District 7330 along with a $6,000 grant from Concorida Lutheran Ministries and donations from our Club to raise a total of $13,000 to provide a long list of much needed furniture, appliances and kitchen utensils for the orphange. Past President, Tony Zuloaga, visited the orphanage and assisted Sister Elsa in obtaining the materials.
 
Van purchased in 2009 through contributions from the McMurray Rotary, grants from Rotary District 7330 and Rotary International,  in conjunction with the Cali, Columbia Rotary
(This van now needs to be replaced)