POSTED BY 60milliongirls | Apr, 18, 2011 |

Needless to say, we are as disappointed as you to hear the allegations put forward against Greg Mortenson.  We cannot comment on them as we do not know Mr. Mortenson personally, not have we ever worked with CAI, his funding organization.  You may want to look at his website, where the CAI Board of Directors have answered a large number of questions asked by 60 minutes. Like you, we were deeply moved by the work he has done in supporting what we feel is an extremely important cause: fair access to a quality education for all children and particularly for girls who are very often left behind.

We chose to invite Greg Mortenson because of his support and belief in the vital importance of girls’ education to strong community development in some of the most remote areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan.  His approach of listening to, learning and understanding the needs of the communities he wished to help is very closely allied with our beliefs and philosophy.  We felt his story strongly underlined what is clear from research and studies: research convincingly shows that programs directed to the education of girls are more effective than virtually any other community investment in the developing world.

Education of women is the key to economic productivity and political stability.

Healthy, safe, empowered girls transform families, communities and countries.

60 million girls is a Montreal based public foundation entirely run by volunteers.  Because of our structure, over 99% of donations we receive go to the projects we support.  For 2011, our target is to raise $300,000 to fund three projects, the full details of which can be found on our website.

Where your donation will be directed:

The donation portion of each ticket ($50) will be used by 60 million girls to fund these projects and we are therefore issuing tax receipts of $50 per ticket purchased for this reason.

Of the $50 cost portion of the ticket, this money will be used to cover the expenses related to our contract with Penguin Speaker’s Bureau who acts as the agent for Greg Mortenson’s public speaking engagements. No donations from this event or from 60 million girls are going to the Central Asia Institute (CAI).

We take extreme care in choosing our project partners.  We have a yearly tendering process to receive project submissions which are studied, analyzed and evaluated over a four month period by our project evaluation sub-committee. Beyond the effectiveness of the project and the experience and project assessment capacity of our partners, we also review their financial statements and require budgets to be submitted.  All partners must meet our criteria that their administration ratio be less than 10%.

In the past we have funded projects through The Stephen Lewis Foundation, Free the Children, UNICEF Canada, WUSC, AMREF Canada, Acceso International.  Please feel free to read some of the reports on the progress of these projects on our website, under the projects section by year.

We also believe that in all fairness, Mr. Mortenson should have the ability to respond to these allegations if he so chooses.  At this time, we are still under contract with  Penguin’s Speakers Bureau for the May 5th conference.

We appreciate your concern about these latest developments and your taking the time to contact us.  We also are very thankful for your kind words and support of 60 million girls.

We look forward to an informative and enlightening conference on May 5th and a chance to further discuss the vital importance of girls education  and how each one of us is taking action towards a fairer and more just world for all children.

Sincerely,

Wanda Bedard

President

60 million girls Foundation

www.60milliongirls.org

TAGS : allegations Greg Mortenson Three Cups of Tea

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