ears to our world

At ETOW, we believe access to information is access to education. We provide innovative, simple and appropriate technologies to schools and communities in remote, rural and impoverished regions of our world.

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Thank you for your support in 2016

Dear Friend,

Thanksgiving is upon us here in the US.  Ears To Our World wishes to offer our heartfelt thanks, both for those for whom we exist, as well as for those who so generously support us and without whom we couldn’t exist: you.

ETOW in Haiti: Support for Hurricane Matthew Victims

Many are aware of the devastating destruction caused by Hurricane Matthew in Haiti, a country that was still in recovery from the 2010 earthquake.

Following the storm, ETOW's intrepid partners at the Haitian Health Foundation rushed into action, distributing our remaining stock of analog self-powered radios for medical and sustenance relief.  We’re gathering more supplies even as you read this message. Many may not realize that the information a radio provides can be as important as food and medicine––indeed, radio informs Haitians where they can obtain clean water, fresh food, and medical assistance, as well as how to locate loved ones.  Thus, an ETOW radio can mean comfort and connection, as well as survival and safety, giving victims the will and means to carry on.

ETOW is now teaching HHF staff how to build HumanaLights in the field. Our HumanaLights are simple LED flashlights in kit form that run for weeks on a single dead (depleted) AA battery––and for many months on a fresh battery, even with heavy use.  To many, this remarkable little light in the dark means safety.

ETOW in Cameroon, South Sudan, Kenya, Tanzania: Let there be light 

Meanwhile in Kenya and in Tanzania, a new batch of ETOW radios provide news, health, and safety information. 

And this year, we successfully designed and deployed portable solar battery charging and lighting systems in Cameroon and South Sudan, where several schools and a girls’  dormitory will now have reliable light.  

Clearly, ETOW continues to be dedicated to improving lives and building children’s futures through appropriate, energy-efficient technologies.

If you would like to make a tax-deductible gift to help us help others, you can send it in the enclosed envelope. Or, feel free to give the gift of radio here on our website (printable donation forms available).

If you would like to learn more about the HumanaLight kit, or if you would like to purchase one, check out: humanalight.org.

ETOW radios being distributed through our partners in Tanzania.

ETOW radios being distributed through our partners in Tanzania.

We hope you've had a wonderful 2016, and continue to stay interested in and involved with Ears to Our World. We welcome your support in any form. And to those who’ve already given it:  We thank you!

In 2017, may the light of tolerance and song of peace spread throughout our listening world.

In friendship,
Thomas Witherspoon
Founder & Director, Ears To Our World

 

ETOW to Present at the Inaugural IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference

Great news:  Ears To Our World has been invited to make a presentation about the work we do, and how it addresses humanitarian needs in the developing world, at the first-ever IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference.  The IEEE (The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) is the world’s largest professional association dedicated to advancing technological innovation and excellence for the benefit of humanity. ETOW founder, Thomas Witherspoon, and board member Ed Harris recently answered a “Call for Papers” from the organizers of this prestigious forum, coauthoring and submitting a paper entitled “Avoiding the 30-Pound Paperweight: Success Via Contextually Appropriate Technologies.” We’re delighted to announce that the paper--which details how to successfully incorporate into humanitarian efforts the “human vector” (the real-world needs and input of the people served) with the “technological vector” (the tools currently available)--was accepted.  Thomas will present the paper, and explain how ETOW exemplifies this approach, to conference attendees, including technologists, representatives from NGOs, governments, academe, funders, and industry.

This is a tremendous opportunity to promote our work to an influential audience, and an incredible honor for ETOW, but it’s more: it’s also an affirmation by this internationally respected body that our mission and our methods converge in a realistic way that can make a real difference in the lives of those we serve.

The inaugural Global Humanitarian Technology Conference will be held from October 31 to November 1, 2011, at the Renaissance Hotel in Seattle, Washington. For more information, visit www.ieeeghtc.org.

ETOW Featured in Wall Street Journal Magazine

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ETOW is both honored and humbled to be featured in the May 2010 issue of the Wall Street Journal Magazine (see page 24 in the print edition). Writer David Goren's stellar article brings to life our story, underlined by our mission-driven objectives, and highlights some of our recent significant partnerships; here is an excerpt:

Last August, ETOW teamed with the American Haitian Foundation, shipping radios to the 39 teachers at St. Antoine’s School, in the town of Petite-Rivière-de- Nippes, Haiti, 68 miles from the capital. The teachers brought the radios to their homes, gathering news to pass on to their students. When the earthquake hit, the teachers cranked them up to glean what information they could. “After the earthquake, all the radio stations were off in the country,” says Emmanuel Pressoir, the school’s business manager. “The telephone did not work, even the cell phone. But with their radios, they could go on shortwave, and be informed.” A week later, when a 5.9 aftershock rocked the village and rumors of an impending tsunami stirred panic, the teachers were able to turn to their radios again..."

 

Please visit the WSJ Mag website to read the full article.

ETOW would especially like to thank David, as well as editor Owen Phillips, photographer Randy Harris, and indeed all the WSJ staff, who made this nonprofit's dream come true in print before thousands of readers. We would also like to thank those of our partners and supporters who provided wonderful photos and comments that enrich the piece. Last but certainly not least, ETOW wishes to thank those readers who have responded with all forms of support, in the form of encouraging words, or in donations of money, time, and/or talent.

Many, many thanks to each of you -- we are profoundly grateful.

ETOW Featured in Popular Communications

Click to enlarge. Dear Friends of ETOW,

ETOW has had an incredible first year--from the donation of our first radios to their distribution in seven countries on three continents, from Eastern Europe to Africa and Haiti--we've seen healthy growth in our young organization. We're delighted and encouraged by our many empowering partnerships, as well, which have truly made our successes possible--such as that with the Empower Campaign, a stellar organization which is helping to build much-needed schools in Uganda, and which is now distributing ETOW radios to these same schools.

Our cover feature in December's international magazine, Popular Communications, sums up our year with hope for a bright future. See pages 14-19 for our story, Greg Majewski's excellent supporting article on page 22, and editor Edith Lennon's wonderful editorial on page 4.

We hope you've had a good year, too, and will continue to stay interested in and involved with Ears to Our World.

May blessings abound and peace reign throughout our listening world...

Warm thanks, Thomas.

Thomas Witherspoon Founder/Director, EARS TO OUR WORLD.

Download full article here--courtesy of Popular Communications.

ETOW Helps Teachers in Haiti

Teachers at the Petite-Rivière school prepare to distrubute ETOW radios to all of their teachers. Radios shown in their protective carry cases.In September 2009, Ears To Our World sent 39 radios to teachers in Petite-Rivière-de-Nippes, a small coastal village in southern Haiti. This was made possible through our partnership with the American Haitian Foundation (AHF).

The AHF is a non-profit organization that works to educate young people in Petite-Rivière-de-Nippes and the surrounding community. They do this through a three story school which, with the help of the local community, the group built to serve over 800 students daily. The school building is sited on a hill overlooking the sea and has become much more than just a school. It is an employer of 79 people (38 of whom are teachers), it provides nourishing meals to 560 of their children, the school building itself is used as a community resource for a variety of educational opportunities, and even serves as a local shelter from weather disasters. The Petite-Rivière school, moreover, is totally powered by renewable solar energy.

Petite-Rivière-de-Nippes, Haiti

Though at school, the teachers and students have access to electricity, at home, most do not. Our radios serve as a 24/7 reliable link to world news, language resources and educational programming, as well as to often life-saving weather information.

Haiti is often in the news for its seemingly disproportionate number of natural disasters due to its position in the Gulf, as well as its lack of safety infrastructure. Each year hurricanes, tropical storms and floods take the lives of hundreds of Haitians. The American Haitian Foundation owns and operates three radio stations that are used to broadcast emergency weather information and other important news and announcements to the local community. ETOW's radio, the Grundig FR200 readily receives these stations and will prove an invaluable resource for the school and the surrounding communities where teachers and their students live.

ETOW is proud that, with the help of the AHC staff, we were able to send our radios to the school in the early part of the hurricane season this year. We would like to thank AHC Director, Jack Davidson,  as well as AHC board members and volunteers for helping with this project.

Radios to Sudan in January 2010

Ears To Our World is pleased to announce a new partnership with Project Education Sudan (PES). Project Education Sudan works in Bor County, Jonglei State, Southern Sudan. (Photo courtesy of PES)

We have been working with PES for several months now, putting together an exciting joint project:  ETOW will be sending enough radios to supply teachers in three local villages PES supports in Bor County, Jonglei State, Southern Sudan. We are most thankful to PES for handling most of the extensive logistical costs and arrangements involved in this project. Carol Rinehart, Executive Director and Co-Founder of PES, has embraced our partnership, as our radios will bring much-needed information into the homes of Sudanese teachers and students.

Project Education Sudan is an inspirational organization and a notable example of grass-roots, self-sustaining humanitarianism. PES is a non-profit created as a partnership between Sudanese and Americans in response to destruction that resulted from a twenty-year civil war between Northern and Southern Sudan. Their mission is to fund and support indigenous Sudanese organizations and communities that build primary and secondary schools, and to train teachers in rural villages in Southern Sudan.

Bor County, Jonglei State, Southern Sudan

Continue to follow this project here! We will post more information and photos as they become available.

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