What We Say to Ourselves, We Say to the World

by | Jun 13, 2019 | Seeds: Our Blog

Creating a sense of belonging in our communities and helping others is a purpose and impact we all aspire to achieve, but it is not until we decide to jump in fully, with unshakable tenacity that lives are transformed. The latest TPP Grantees have found the sweet spot between being bold and righteous. Their journeys involve mistakes, hurdles, and vulnerability. Their dedication requires sharing personal achievements and failures in order to spread hope and relatability. The realizations they have made within themselves creates more space for others to join, share and heal.

The wonderous paths of the organizations below include all walks of life. From single mothers, displaced youth, animals, senior women in LGBTQ communities and more, there is a path for everyone! Influence and change can come in the form of a grand heroic gesture or gentle and quiet footsteps that leave everlasting marks towards a better world. There is no circumstance that can not be reimagined, retold and reconstructed.

Good SamariTots – Tot-Friendly Community Service Projects

Good SamariTots is a national nonprofit organization providing hands-on community service opportunities for children. Led by creator, Kelly Kwan, the founding chapter in South Pasadena provides two meetings a month during which families can complete service projects to help local nonprofits and families in need. Specifically, they make food and hygiene kits for the homeless, assemble care packages for deployed service members and hospitalized children, pack holiday treat bags for foster children, play games with seniors, clean up parks, make thank you cards for public servants, and so much more!

In addition, they read and discuss books which introduce various social issues on a preschool level because children should know who they are helping and why. SamariTots are demonstrating that young kids can be change-makers in their communities. It is their goal to make volunteering habitual to foster life-long consideration of others!

Nyudze Elisabeth Suika – Ultra Warm Baby Kits

The Ultra Warm Baby Kit project aims to empower 12 internally displaced, single mothers, who are survivors of gender based violence, with skills in knitting and crocheting. Together, the women will craft blankets and hats for babies in rural communities, who are currently falling ill because of a lacking of warm clothing. Nyudze Elisabeth Suika will set up a social venture that provides ultra warm, low cost kits to individuals in Buea and Kumba, Cameroon.


Habu Initiative – AlYask3ri Primary – Learning In Happiness: Renovation Of Two Classrooms

AlYask3ri Primary School Maiduguri, located in northeast Nigeria, is home to over 2,000 pupils who grow up experiencing hardships, trauma, and poverty. The space serves as a stepping stone in making the children happy while helping them acquire new knowledge to escape this seemingly endless cycle. Habu Ahmed has identified that more classrooms are needed for conducive teaching and learning to take place. A seed grant from The Pollination Project will help in renovating two blocks of classrooms, including renovating the walls, ventilation systems, and floors, along with replacing the ceilings and plaster. Once the project is completed, the students will embark on a new beginning.

Dominion Sanctuary – Pigs, Kids & Fun!

Dominion Sanctuary’s Pigs, Kids & Fun day camp is a half day summer camp focusing on connecting kids and their families with “food” animals, specifically pigs, exploring their care and personalities, and ultimately, helping them view animals as more than just a commodity. Along with co-leaders, Alexianna Mundy, Megan Zars, and Jennifer Papa, Allie Gadziemski will incorporate age-appropriate education about pigs, environmental issues, plant based foods, and sustainability.

Together they will craft, hike through the woods, and enjoy a plant-based meal together. Depending on their age and interest, campers will be invited to directly interact with the animals. This work came to life as a result of their desire to connect kids to view animals as individuals and not food. Most people never get an opportunity to learn hands-on about pigs and spend time with them, so the connections and fun offered by this camp have the potential to create life changing connections with animals.



Transilient is a traveling photo and interview-based project. The team candidly documents transgender and gender non-conforming people in their day-to-day lived realities using only their voices. Over the past three years, they have traveled over 30,000 miles, interviewed over 120 trans and non-binary people, and shifted the trans narrative through numerous media outlets.

The stories they share reach beyond national borders; having reached Canada, the Czech Republic, and even Japan. As the organization grows, the team has recognized their ability to give back to the trans community in tangible ways. By bringing on five assistants, two volunteers, and a summer intern, they shared invaluable vocational, interpersonal, and storytelling skills with other transgender and gender non-conforming people who wish to do similar work. They have created a place that not only provides visibility to the trans community, but allows them to see a positive version of ourselves. So often trans folks are seen in a negative light in the media.

The project’s inspiration came from the founder Basil Soper. He was a LGBT organizer in North Carolina and was accustomed to invasive questioning from the media. He decided he really needed to pursue the project after the notorious bathroom bill, HB2, was passed in NC. This grant will make it so we can keep our website running and accessible to all that need it.


Betty Depuun Jande – The Zero Hunger Project

The Zero Hunger Project is an initiative by Betty Jande, a widow who is passionate about helping fellow widows in Gboko, Benue, Nigeria. The ultimate goal of this work is to eradicate hunger and alleviate poverty through farming activities. The project will build the capacities of thirty widows in agro-business and empower them with the skills to start and sustain their own businesses.


Sara Lonegard And Taylor Fairbank – Distribute Aid

Distribute Aid is a technology platform for refugee aid groups, started by Sara Lonegard and Taylor Fairbank. Their tools help grassroots refugee aid organizations collaborate and coordinate their efforts, with a focus on sending aid, sharing knowledge, managing volunteers, and increasing transparency. By building tools explicitly made to meet the needs of these organizations, they can add millions of dollars in value to the European refugee aid movement and save thousands of hours of administrative effort.

After establishing themselves in Europe, Sara and Taylor hope to expand their scope by helping refugee aid organizations around in the world, and by applying their tools to other fields such as natural disaster relief.

Rae Howell, Jilli Rose, Deacon Warner – Bee-Sharp Honeybee

Bee-Sharp Honeybee is an art-science-environmental impact project that shares the secret life of bees, featuring a live string orchestra, synchronized with an animated film, and a live honeybee hive, all of which are the subjects of a documentary film. Inspired by, and directly derived from extensive research of rhythm, pitch, and waggle dance patterns, Bee-Sharp Honeybee magnifies the subtle intricacies of the beehive; symphony-style!

It’s Rae, Jilli, and Deacon’s contribution to help promote bee culture, educate the public about the importance of bees to human survival, and inspire people to think local by planting pollinator friendly plants and keeping backyards pesticide-free. After all, small steps can lead to powerful changes.

Rose Sanjoh, Rita, Bernadette, Nkwelle – The Survivors Project

The Survivors Project is an initiative led by Rose Sanjoh in the Limbe community of Cameroon. The goal of this initiative is to raise awareness around human trafficking. Rose will share her story with vulnerable women, who often are victims of traffickers. Rose believes that by exposing her past to her community, she will change the attitudes that individuals demonstrate towards trafficking victims, thus reducing the rate of young girls traveling to the Middle East. A grant from The Pollination Project will help in organizing an educational workshops, community sessions, and the production and dissemination of informational materials.

Pedro Bermeo G, Fundación Libera Ecuador – Tandana Fest

Tandana Fest is an event aiming to promote nature and animal, including human, rights by reactivating public spaces through art. Pedro Bermeo will use open spaces to hold diverse dialogues around human relations and representations of the rest of nature. This event will focus on climate change, including animals and nature, through gastronomy, entertainment, and reflection.

Henrietta Sindy Adiko, Rita Siaw – Write Evolution

Write Evolution was initiated by Henrietta Sindy Adiko, an astute educator, in partnership with Feminine Star Africa in Ho West District of Volta, Ghana. The project seeks to address the inability of students in second cycle institutions to write creative stories as well as solving the problem of limited relatable reading materials in rural schools. The project organizes in-service trainings for teachers, inter-houses, and inter schools, as well as writing competitions and publishing stories into a reading book for basic schools.

SAGE – Eating To Live

Sistahs Aging Gracefully & Enthusiastically, SAGE, is a collective of senior, same gender loving African American women, 60-plus years or disabled. It was out of this group that Eating to Live. SAGE was founded in response to the barriers in accessing resources, information and care for same gender loving seniors, especially women. They are driven by the philosophy that, “We are our sister’s keeper.” honoring and welcoming lesbians of all races and ethnicities residing in the Inland Empire, California, and does not discriminate when providing support. This project allows seniors to learn the health benefits of clean cooking and eating, which brings positive changes to their health. Funding from this grant will allow those attending a “take home” project, with feedback on time, difficulty/ease, and taste.

Nachizo G.Manza And Mainess N.Chilumbwa – Na Tubelenge Children’s Library

Knowledge and Information are crucial factors in human development, without which, there is no development. This is why Nachizo G Manza and Mainess N Chilumbwa founded Na tubelenge Children’s Library, a community based organization located in Lusaka, Zambia. The organization teaches and encourages children of every background to read books for enjoyment and inner growth. This is in effort to better the quality to their lives and improve the poor reading culture in the country. Nachizo and Mainess collect used and new books from individuals and organizations and have created a place were children can freely come and access them, which they consider to be a basic human right, one that is sadly denied to a lot of Zambian children.

“If you want to hide something from an African, put it in writing.” This is the narrative, accompanied with their love for children, that the founders wanted to change when they first started this project. Community libraries are powerful knowledge partners in delivering services such as digital inclusion, education, local knowledge, social services, as well as a place to interact with likeminded people. A grant from The Pollination Project will enable the library to hold holiday reading camps. In these camps early childhood teachers will teach children of every background the basics of reading and encourage them to fall in love with reading and other literacy tools.


Hired To Home, Inc.

Hired to Home is a social enterprise organization which promotes the intentional hiring of homeless individuals and seeks to combat nimbyism. Securing employment is a key factor in transitioning homeless individuals into stable housing, however this can be extremely challenging for those who have no permanent place to live. Even when organizations do propose new facilities to support and empower homeless individuals and families, they are often met with significant opposition from local residents and businesses.

Hired to Home’s mission is to address this by employing homeless individual in its purpose made coffee house (Home Brew Coffee), and providing the necessary support to secure long-term employment. The venue itself also facilitates dialogue and understanding within communities around the issue of homelessness and encourage intentional hiring among other businesses.

Written by Milena Fraccari