Future In Our Hands - USA

aka FIOH-USA   |   Clarence, NY   |  futureinourhandsusa.org

Mission

Future in Our Hands - USA, founded December 2005, funds social and economic projects that foster human dignity and sustainable development in East Africa.  We have close and personal relationships with those we serve.
We fund projects that support education, health care, and to help obtain potable water for those we serve.
FIOH-USA is dedicated to more equitable use of world resources, and stands for a commitment to co-operation and active consideration (rather than competition) for our fellow human beings; equal rights for everyone; and co-responsibility to safeguard the environment for current and future generations.

Ruling year info

2006

President

Mary Ellen Dye

Treasurer

Sandra Warner

Main address

5200 Bank St.

Clarence, NY 14031 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

20-4018122

NTEE code info

Fund Raising and/or Fund Distribution (P12)

Fund Raising and/or Fund Distribution (K12)

Economic Development (S30)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Future In Our Hands-USA funds social and economic projects that foster human dignity and sustainable development in Kenya and Zambia.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Provision of wells and/or safe water

Future in Our Hands-USA (FIOH-USA) has been providing clean, safe, drinkable water for people in East Africa including Kenya and Zambia. Building wells in Africa has been an important focus since our inception. Without wells, these rural villagers have to walk up to 10 kilometers every day in order to obtain safer water for basic needs.

FIOH-USA has funded over 21 wells saving countless lives by preventing disease such as typhoid, cholera and more. In addition, this water has also allowed these residents to feed new tree nurseries. FIOH Kenya is part of Wangari Mathai’s green belt movement. This has resulted in the planting of thousands of trees. Trees in East Africa are diminished due to the extensive use of wood as the fuel for cooking. The lack of trees fosters soil erosion and negatively effects the water table.

Our new project within this division is the planting of vegetable gardens near the wells. Before the wells were built, the ground was too dry for planting. Now these gardens provide much needed food in villages where most people earn less than a dollar per day.

Population(s) Served
Adults
People of African descent

FIOH-USA sponsors bright but needy students for primary, high school, college or vocational training.  We work closely with FIOH-Kenya and FIOH-Zambia to determine who will be sponsored.
We usually sponsor about 35-40 students/year depending on the number of sponsors who come forward.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
People of African descent

This program has provided sanitary pads for the 250 female students at Kanyamedha Mixed Secondary School for over five years. In 2015 the program was expanded to include Usoma Primary School. In 2018 it was expanded to 20 HIV+ girls at Angelic Ark Center in Kisii Kenya.
This prevents the young women from falling behind in their studies due to missing 4-5 days of school every month. It also improves the girls dignity, health and sanitation.

Population(s) Served
Women and girls
People of African descent

Provides monthly transportation expenses for ~ 42 individuals in Kisumu Kenya who are HIV+ so they can travel to receive their ARV medications. We also enrolled them in the insurance program offered -so they can be treated if they develop opportunistic infections.

Population(s) Served
People of African descent
Adults

Provide seed money for micro loan projects in Kenya and Zambia. Hundreds of families benefit and are able to feed clothe and educate their families since participating in the micro-loan program. All loans have been paid back on time with a small interest to make the program self-sustaining

Population(s) Served
Adults
People of African descent

FIOH-USA has funded the planting of new gardens in Shabila, Zambia; Kisumu Kenya and Kisii, Kenya. These gardens prevent starvation of hundreds of families.
One of the gardens in at Usoma Primary School planted in 2016. It not only provides a lunch program for the students but also teaches the students how to plant and rotate crops that will be of benefit to their families to foster starting gardens in their rural homes.
In October 2016 FIOH-USA funded a garden for a small orphanage in Kisii that assists children who are HIV+.
During our visit in 2019 we evaluated the gardens in Usoma and Kisii. They are well tended and bring about a good harvest.

Population(s) Served
Families
People of African descent

FIOH-USA received grant monies from Sisters of St. Joseph, Orange Fund in Orange, CA ($14,887) and Clarence United Methodist Church in Clarence, NY ($5000) to build an 8 room center in Kisii Center to provide temporary housing for up to 20 HIV+ children. There is a great stigma regarding HIV/AIDS in Kisii and therefore many children are homeless due to rejection by their families or guardians. The children moved into the completed Centre on May 12, 2019. The plan is to normally have the children stay about six months while the children and their families/caregivers are educated regarding how olive, eat well and earn good habits, especially how to take their HIV medications. When ready the child is returned to their family. There is continued follow-up. If the care is not adequate the child can return to the Centre. Two board members of FIOH-USA were in Kisii to see first hand the building of this excellent Centre.

Population(s) Served
People of African descent
People with HIV/AIDS

Where we work

Awards

Intwali Award 2012

Buffalo For Africa

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Our major goal is to be faithful to our vision statement - revised and approved by Board 06/2017
VISION STATEMENT:
Three to five years from now, Future In Our Hands (FIOH)-USA is a Western New York based charitable non-profit organization with national visibility (e.g., feature articles in national news organization, website, etc.) and is highly rated for its charitable work (e.g., Guidestar, Charity navigator, etc.). We have a large and growing donor base funding a significant portion of our activity.
We coordinate with stable and growing FIOH organizations in Kenya and Zambia that includes a board, paid staff and a vibrant network of volunteers that provide time and energy to maximize use of resources. We have a cohesive communication system with our African partners (e.g., email, Skype, etc.). Although our major activities take place in Kenya, we also provide funding for FIOH projects in Zambia.
We have relationships with a variety of local organizations (e.g., churches, etc.) that allow us to share ideas and collaborate in fund-raising efforts. We participate in local community projects (e.g., apple festival, Latin-America event, etc.) in order to raise awareness of our mission and increase our support base. We have multiple people participating in marketing, providing common messages using core, professionally prepared materials. We also have a cohesive internal (i.e., to FIOH-USA) communication system (e.g., using Google docs, Dropbox, etc.) that enables us to share ideas and make decisions in an effective manner.
We have a passionate group of board members with diverse skills, community connections, experience, and cultural backgrounds. In addition we have working subcommittees with specific foci and leadership.
Definition:
• Donor base - individual donors (e.g., Apple Fest committee, buying Bon Ton books, etc.). We have personal contact with them.

We use the following five growth strategies to accomplish our vision:

• Expand our variety of funding sources
• Strengthen our financial position
• Expand quantity and quality of leadership in the organization
• Create increased awareness of our organization
• Stabilize our relationship with FIOH organizations in Kenya and Zambia

1. Expand quantity and quality of leadership in organization.- strategies
• Confirm what work we need to do in moving toward our mission
• Define and clarify the people needs in order to accomplish the work of FIOH-USA
• Develop methods and approaches we use for replenishing the core leadership of the organization (e.g., Board members, sub committee leaders/members, etc.)
• Monitor current leadership capability to assess its capacity to support the mission and implement actions where needed.
• Coordinate between leadership of sub groups to ensure synergy and optimal use of resources.
• Support subcommittees in efforts to expand their leadership capacity.
2. Expand our variety of funding sources: - strategies
• Monitor current and future funding needs in order to ensure plans are in place to meet the financial needs of FIOH-USA
• Continually monitor available fundraising sources to ensure availability of fund raising opportunities (grants, organizations, events, etc.)
• Establish a variety of viable funding sources
• Establish clear policies, procedures, instructions, etc. for initiating fundraising activities
3. Stabilize our relationships with FIOH organizations in East Africa- strategies
• Establish productive communication - Have our African partners properly make us of our proposal and follow-up forms when submitting projects for funding.
• Ensure appropriate use of funds by FIOH organization in Africa- regular follow-up reporting
• Maintain personal contact- Skype, email and Board member(s) traveling to sites at least every two years (at their own expense)
4. Strengthen financial position- strategies
• stay within compliance (government rules)
• manage finances in sustainable fashion
• explore ways to grow our existing money
• identify short, medium and long term financial goals
• ensure proper use of funds
5. Create increased awareness of our organization- strategies
• Go to events and groups to present our organization – e.g.: Newman center, college sororities, fraternities, senior citizens, and youth.
• Educate members of the board about the organization so that members are able to share our mission.
• Encourage each member to pursue a circle of people outside the board to enthusiastically tell the story of FIOH.
• Take full advantage of social media and web technologies that align well with the organization's direction and mission.
• Seek out a corporate sponsors for events – which may give us the opportunity to gain visibility in their media outlets such as the sponsor's monthly newsletters, TV, radio. Redesign our brochure and website.
•Stay aware of the other organizations' accomplishments and activities
•strengthen its profile to make it a more attractive candidate for potential partner organizations
•Establish ongoing communication with other organizations

Our main capabilitiy is our dedicated hard working Board members and volunteers
Our function is mainly to raise funds and awareness of the needs of those we serve. We do this through our Newsletter (Harambee) published 2-3 times/year and distributed by mail to about 1000 individuals and by email and mail chimp to about 500 more.
FIOH-USA also has a website (futureinourhandsusa.org) where people can learn about our organization and donate.
FIOH-USA has close connections with several local churches and community organizations that help with fundraising.
FIOH-USA gives presentations to groups including, Churches, Social groups, Schools and clubs to raise awareness of our work and gain support.
We have developed a fundraising event that can be repeated annually and carry out other fundraising activities on an ongoing basis.

We had a strategic planning event in 2017 where we updated our vision and developed projects and tactics for each of our five working committees as described previously.
-Funded two new wells in Kenya:
-Mawego well and Kisima Cha Amani (Well of Peace)- these provide safe water for hundreds of families
-Expansion of the Usoma School Nutrition Program - provides a garden and a lunch program for entire primary school
-Funded building of Wholesale Shop in Usoma for Women's Sunshine Group in Kenya - provide income for over 100 women
-Repair of roof of Shaibila Primary School in Zambia
Expansion of Stop the Spot program in two schools in Kisumu Kenya providing sanitary pads and health education to over 600 young women. This program also prevent them from missing up to a week of school every month and has improved their grades.
-Sponsored 35 students in 2017 for school. One high school graduate won a scholarship to University. Five students graduated from high school and qualified for college.Three students graduated from college.
- We continue to fund our ongoing projects including HIV/AIDS transportation and Microfinance projects.

Financials

Future In Our Hands - USA
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Future In Our Hands - USA

Board of directors
as of 02/11/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

MaryEllen Dye

Future In Our Hands-USA

Term: 2020 - 2023


Board co-chair

Michele Sprada

Director

Term: 2020 - 2023

Mary Ellen Dye

Future In Our Hands-USA

Sandra Warner

Future In Our Hands-USA

Mary Owusu

Future In Our Hands-USA

Clay Carson

Future In Our Hands-USA

Catherine Strickland

Future In Our Hands- USA

Rachel Turner

Future In Our Hands- USA

Michelle Sprada

Future in Our Hands-USA

Louise Heubusch

Future in Our Hands-USA

Terri Ricigliano

Future in Our Hands-USA

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 2/11/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

Disability