Granny Bulletin: March 2017 – Stride, the Grandmothers Campaign in Australia, Materials, and More!

Granny Bulletin: March 2017

Welcome to the Granny Bulletin, your source for news, stories and information about exciting initiatives from the Stephen Lewis Foundation’s Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign.

In This Granny Bulletin:

  1. Striding into the Next 10 Years
  2. Fundraising Corner
  3. Don’t Miss Out: Grandmothers Campaign Pins
  4. Mother’s Day Tribute Cards Available for Grandmothers Groups
  5. The Grandmothers Campaign in Australia
  6. Beds WithOut Breakfast: The Grandmothers Campaign Member’s Home Away from Home
  7. Grandmothers Campaign T-Shirts! Order by April 17
  8. Materials Available for Groups and Events

Dear Grandmothers and Grandothers,

We recently returned from the BC Islands Grandmothers Gathering in Fanny Bay, BC. It was a truly special day spent with inspiring grandmothers and grandothers and, by all accounts, the Gathering was a resounding success! 

The Gathering was just three days after Ilana’s letter for International Women’s Day was sent out, so her passionate call to action was fresh in the minds and hearts of those there. We heard from many who attended the BC Islands Gathering (as well as from others by email) that Ilana’s letter fortified their commitment to supporting African community-based organizations and grandmothers and to seeing the Grandmothers Campaign move with strength into the next 10 years. But something else was on the minds of Grandmothers Campaign members at the Gathering, as well. Moved by Ilana’s letter, they wanted to know whether the SLF was having any influence at the international level in amplifying the voices of African community-based organizations and ensuring additional support for them. 

While there is still a long way to go, we want to assure you that we are starting to see a shift in international awareness about the importance of supporting community-based organizations and grandmothers. For the first time ever, the UN’s 2016 Political Declaration on HIV/AIDS included language about investing in holistic programming, supporting community-based organizations, and recognizing the importance of social protections for children and their caregivers.

And then, just over a month after that UN declaration, in July 2016, South African grandmothers marched to the doors of the International AIDS Conference to deliver their powerful statement demanding that the South African government and the international community guarantee the rights of grandmothers. South African government and the international community guarantee the rights of grandmothers. Within days of that march, a senior minister in the South African government met with two grandmothers from the Gathering’s organizing committee, and has had a second follow-up meeting to receive their demands and further discuss the urgent needs of grandmothers in their country. And South Africa’s Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi declared in an interview with national media that he agrees wholeheartedly with grandmothers’ calls for greater recognition of the role they are playing in turning the tide of AIDS.

It is these grandmothers in South Africa and the grandmothers in Uganda (who also gathered, marched, and delivered the Ugandan Grandmothers’ Statement in 2015), and the grandmothers who will gather next year in Tanzania, and the thousands of others in sub-Saharan Africa who are mobilizing for their rights — it is these powerful, brilliant, resilient, courageous, loving women–who will ultimately be successful in bringing the world’s attention (and the world’s dollars) to community-based organizations in Africa. And so, as Ilana said in her new year letter to the Grandmothers Campaign, “We at the SLF are moving heaven and earth to raise funds for their advocacy.”

We know that you will be with us and with African grandmothers every step of the way. And we cannot adequately express just how significant that commitment is. This global grandmothers movement built on love is an extraordinary act of solidarity.

With love, gratitude, and a fire in our hearts and minds,

Healy, Carrie, Asmita, and Megan

P.S. We’re thrilled to share that South Africa Grandmothers Gathering organizers (and grandmothers) Mama Darlina Tyawana and Eunice Mangwane will attend the Ottawa-Gatineau 10 Year Anniversary Gathering on April 28! We will share updates from them in a Granny Bulletin this summer.

1. Striding into the Next 10 Years

Every year Stride to Turn the Tide is a special event. Grandmothers and community members walk – with purpose – to raise funds and awareness for the grandmothers of Africa. But 2017 is particularly special because this year, the Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign is stepping with strength into this Stride season after having raised over $1.9 million since 2010. We invite you to mark this next leg of our journey together  by participating in Stride to Turn the Tide!

As always, you can plan to walk in your community with other grandmothers groups, family, and friends in a traditional Stride event. But if you’re looking for something new to try (or if your group wants to participate in Stride but you want to avoid the logistics of organizing a physical walk), you can try the now-popular Virtual Walk — where you use pedometers (or smartphones) to track your steps, get pledges, and start walking (indoors, outdoors, upstairs, downstairs, in malls, in parks, in good or bad weather) to reach your chosen destinations.

All of the Stride materials are online, and you can learn more about both options on our website or by calling the Stride Coordinator at 1-888-203-9990 ext. 302.  If you’d like to step into online fundraising, we are happy to help your group set up your team’s online Stride page.

2. Fundraising Corner: The Petawawa Grannies Take Fall by Storm with a GranApple Tea

submitted by Petawawa Grannies

Last year, the Petawawa Grannies decided that we wanted to spice up our annual fall tea to attract a bigger audience and have a little fun in the planning! We decided to go with an apple theme because nothing is more Canadian in fall than apples (especially in our part of Ontario). 

The theme was a great success! We served all things apple, from mulled apple cider to every kind of apple-inspired dessert, cookie, tart, square, bread or sandwich.  We also had a baking day when we made apple pies, both large and small, for sale, and sold dozens of jars of apple and apple combination jellies, as well as crabapples.  The biggest lesson learned was that we have to make more pies!

Sticking with our apple theme, our decorations were simple.  A clear glass vase centred each table, filled with apples.  The Ontario Apple Growers Association graciously gave us beautiful brochures that we were able to use as placemats.  Napkins with an apple motif completed the table settings.  The Apple Growers Association also provided lots of recipe cards that we were able to give to our attendees and lots of posters of Canadian apple varieties, used in our wall decorations. 

As always there were door prizes and entertainment for our diners, this time by the Zephyrs, a local woodwind ensemble. 

All in all the Petawawa Grannies had a wonderful day, our patrons enjoyed the goodies and sales, and we raised funds for our cause!

If you would like to learn more about GranApple Tea, please contact and we will put you in touch with the Petawawa Grannies.

If you would like to submit a fundraiser for the Fundraising Corner, please send your description, a photo, and the email address of someone from your group who is willing to field questions from other groups to

3. Don’t Miss Out: Grandmothers Campaign Pins

Are there any members of your group who don’t yet have their commemorative 10 Year Anniversary pins? Do you have upcoming events where your supporters might like to get their own pin to proudly showcase their commitment to turning the tide of AIDS in Africa?

After selling out of the first batch of pins, we placed a second order and still have those in stock. The metal pins (1in x .75in) are available to groups on consignment. For group members, the cost is only$1.50 (which recovers our costs); if you want to sell them as a fundraiser, we suggest $5 a pin.

Please contact your Grandmothers Campaign Officer or to place an order or to learn more!

4. Mother’s Day Tribute Cards Available for Grandmothers Groups

As grandmothers and members of the Campaign, your hearts have always been with the African grandmothers who have become mothers all over again, as they raise a generation of children orphaned by AIDS. This Mother’s Day, the SLF is again offering two beautiful printed or electronic cards to honour and celebrate mothering in all its forms. In our April Granny Bulletin, we will share the details for how you can send a printed or electronic card to a mother, grandmother, or any woman caregiver in your life.

This month, we wanted to let you know about the opportunity to order Mother’s Day Tribute Cards for your group to make available in your community at an upcoming fundraiser or event (or if you wish, you could set up a table specifically to collect Mother’s Day tribute donations – perhaps outside a flower shop).

Each card features an image of hands or a picture of an African grandmother and child and includes the message “I wanted to give you a gift that is truly meaningful by making a donation in your honour to the Stephen Lewis Foundation. Happy Mother’s Day!”

The cards are meant to be given to donors to acknowledge their Mother’s Day Tribute donation of $10 or more, so they can give the cards to the woman or women they are honouring for Mother’s Day..

If your grandmothers groups is interested in having Mother’s Day Tribute Cards, please contact with the number of cards you would like, your group name, and your mailing address. We expect to have cards in the office by mid-April and will mail them to you promptly.

Note: Grandmothers group members who wish to make their own Mother’s Day Tribute donations can do that directly through the website link and phone number that will be shared in the April Granny Bulletin (when they become available). This grandmothers group request of Tribute Cards is intended specifically for groups who wish to use Mother’s Day Tribute Cards as a fundraiser for their group.

5. The Grandmothers Campaign in Australia

There’s no doubt about it — the Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign is taking off in Australia! There are currently 5 official grandmothers groups in New South Wales and Victoria and there’s interest in Western Australia, South Australia, Tasmania, and Queensland, as well. 

Given the interest, momentum, and potential in Australia, we’re organizing a speaking tour around the country for May.  Ida Nambeya, Senior Advisor to the Grandmothers Campaign (who many of you have heard speak about her visits to our partner’s grandmothers groups in sub-Saharan Africa), will be going to Australia and meeting up with Margaret Hunter (one of the two Australian grandmothers who attended the South Africa Grandmothers Gathering), who started Ranges Aid, one of the two original grandmothers groups in Australia. Ida and Margaret will travel to meet with and speak to existing and potential grandmothers groups around the country during the month of May. 

Do you have friends or family in Australia who are interested in getting involved in the Grandmothers Campaign and would want to hear from Ida and Margaret? If so, please email so that we can be in touch!

6. Beds WithOut Breakfast — The Grandmothers Campaign Member’s Home Away from Home

Update from Linda Taberner

Beds Without Breakfast is going international! Members of the Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign’s UK group, Guilford and Godalming Grandmothers Group in England, based within easy reach of London, are offering their homes as part of the programme. As always, donations go to the Stephen Lewis Foundation and this is a wonderful opportunity for international networking, as well as saving money on UK accommodation. Please check online for the latest updated list as homes are added regularly! Other recent additions include a former 4 star B and B on the Petawawa River and a cottage in Muskoka with room for the grandkids! Please refer family and friends to the programme as several homes accept non-granny guests.

For more information please visit the Grandmothers Campaign website or write to

6. Grandmothers Campaign T-Shirts! Order by April 17

If you would like Grandmothers Campaign T-shirts, black with the campaign logo in white (as pictured above), from Gathering Grannies, please note that this will be one of the final orders and the deadline for ordering is April 17. Shirts are $23 each which includes postage when at least 3 shirts are ordered. To order please contact

8. Materials Available for Groups and Events

As many of you know, we have a large collection of materials available for your group and your events which we are always happy to send to you. After a long winter, we wanted to take a moment to highlight a few of them for you.

“Celebrate and Rededicate” video (5 min 28 sec)

This video was made to mark the 10 Year Anniversary but also serves as a great introduction to the Grandmothers Campaign.

You can watch it online, we can burn it onto a DVD for you, or you can send you a link so that you can download it.

SLF School Newsletter

Twice a year, the Stephen Lewis Foundation produces “Class Act,” a school newsletter, which is available to download from the SLF website. We know the many of you do presentations in classrooms so we wanted to make sure you knew about these newsletters and the SLF School Flyer, which you can print copies of for your outreach in schools.


2015 Year in Review

This 32-page document is filled with rich stories about the work our partner organizations do. Focusing on grandmothers and on orphans and vulnerable children, it gives readers concrete examples of the impact our partners are having. It is available online, but we also have a limited number of print copies available for groups. (Watch for our 2016 Year in Review–coming soon!)


Fall Grassroots: Reaching Children and Youth

We have copies of the fall Grassroots newsletter available. This newsletter features articles about the child & youth treatment gap, the South Africa Grandmothers Gathering, and the 10 Year Anniversary of the Grandmothers Campaign.


Other Materials

And, as always, we are happy to send you:

To request any of these materials or others for your group or events or to learn about other materials available, please email us at

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