Happy Birthday Fred Mango

Since 2007, Fred Mango has been helping bring clean water to the people of Kenya as a RainCatcher partner. He is literally “the man” on the ground.

Whether sourcing materials, identifying suitable projects, or navigating red tape, Fred’s devotion and skill makes the difference in whether a rainwater-harvesting system gets installed now, later or never. His commitment to getting a system in place sooner leads to more lives saved.

This year, Fred was absolutely instrumental in getting 11 community locations – a church and 10 schools – equipped with the permanent tank-and-gutter solution donated by Beachbody. Even the local leaders who’d specifically requested Fred and RainCatcher’s help expressed amazement about how efficient and comprehensive the project turned out to be.

What’s so inspiring about Fred is that he’s one of those fabled “local boy done good.” He grew up in the Nyahera area of southwestern Kenya, not far from Kisumu and Lake Victoria. He has moved on to Nairobi, where he  lives with his young family, is the star employee of an established company and is an entrepreneur.

That would be enough for most people, but not for Fred. You see, he is compelled to give back to the struggling community he came from. He travels back to Kisumu frequently to bring opportunity and secure resources for the people of his own village and surrounding villages.

Everywhere you go with Fred there are people greeting him warmly, thanking him, and giving him gifts to demonstrate their gratitude. He is continually referred to as “such a good boy,” by the  aunties, neighbors, and former teachers you run into while in the field.

In addition to partnering with RainCatcher, Fred has formed a youth leadership group to encourage other educated young people in Nyahera and beyond to help the youth of the area. The are initiating grassroots change by being visible examples of what can be achieved by staying in school and by providing practical hands-on training in computers, business, sports and health.

By extension, RainCatcher now has a growing legion of knowledgeable supporters in the area – teachers, business owners, mothers and more. They’re like an army of optimistic agents-for-change in blue RainCatcher shirts.

In a way, through his tireless commitment, Fred is a revolutionary. With his powerful vision and his big heart, Fred is bringing more than just clean water to the people he cares about; he’s bringing a brighter future and hope.

Today we celebrate the birthday of someone who’s more than just “a good boy.” Fred Mango is a great man!

RainCatcher and Embracing the World

Amma Raincatcher Embracing the World

RainCatcher has donated 100 water filters to Embracing the World, the international not-for-profit collective of humanitarian projects of Amma (Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi). Discussions are underway between RainCatcher and Embracing the World on potential opportunities for collaboration on the provision of clean drinking water to impoverished communities in India.

Amma Raincatcher Embracing the World

A Look Back at a Partner’s Summer – HELP International

Every new partnership with a passionate, hands-on organization expands the reach of clean water and quickly saves more lives. This summer, RainCatcher met Suzanne and Whitney from HELP International and it was the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

Suzanne and Whitney – representing the leadership for HELP International’s Uganda programs – brought portable clean-water systems donated by RainCatcher back to Mbale and wove them seamlessly into the other amazing work their team was already doing. Check out this amazing video they did – RainCatcher is happy to be in it as well.

Through these efforts, RainCatcher and HELP International partnered to bring clean water to Kakoli village and to the slums of the Mbale area. This uplifting and gorgeous video summarizes the accomplishments of their team this year and highlights the beauty of Uganda. It’s no wonder all involved can’t wait to go back!

Happy Birthday Father Kizito

Today is the 35th birthday of an incredible man, who is a tremendously valued partner for RainCatcher. In fact, he is so influential that when in Uganda on a RainCatcher mission it’s quite common to hear: “All roads lead to Father Kizito.”

New team members ask, “How do we know so-and-so?” or “How did we find this group?” Father Kizito is frequently the answer.

It was Father Kizito who introduced us to Sylvia. You may remember her: she brought clean water to Kirinda schools.

He leads the Mityana Parish and a whole rectory of priests from an impressive headquarters – a massive, gorgeous red-brick church “built by Germans” in the early 1970s.  But, in reality, he’s not just there – on those beautiful grounds, conducting Mass and bringing out the best in his young clergy team; he’s everywhere.

Emails from Kizito, even just this summer, come from Spain and Los Angeles and so many places, as well as from Uganda. Email from his proteges pop into our inboxes from Finland. As a team, they’re out, making connections, and bringing great things to the children of their Ugandan parish and beyond.

Today, Kizito’s birthday is being formally and enthusiastically celebrated by admirers and supporters in California. His initial connection with RainCatcher came because he was there on a visit to these same church partners and heard of the new rainwater harvesting initiative. He went to Malibu to find the people doing it.

Based on Kizito’s determination and charisma, those people were compelled to bring the gutter-and-tank solutions to Uganda. That team developed into RainCatcher.

This summer, during visits to finish up Beachbody’s 2011 project with RainCatcher, Kizito escorted the team around to schools already benefiting from the rainwater harvesting. The team was greeted with gratitude, singing, dancing and tales of the impact the tanks had already made. As part of this project, a total of 11 Ugandan schools now have reliable, safe water caught from the sky, thanks to Father Kizito and Beachbody.

But, he’s not done yet. He has a list for a new wave of school tanks and there’s no doubt that as he tours the planet this fall that he’ll be making more connections and conceiving bigger plans for helping the people of Uganda. He is always on the move, relentless in his efforts to serve. We’re so proud to be partnered with a man with such vision. RainCatcher looks forward to doing more great work with him and saving more lives.

Happy Birthday Father Kizito! There is no end to the joy and celebration that accompanies the anniversary of your birth. Your commitment to service fuels so much good in this world and the impact cascades and flows and simply gives and gives and gives.  

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