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Friends of FANA News - January 2004

Welcome to our new members and to those who are receiving this newsletter for the first time!

Upcoming Events

Mark Your Calendars for the following events:

Friends of FANA's Annual Colombian Fiesta
Saturday, February 21 2:30 - 5:30 pm
Reston Community Center, Reston, VA
Colombian folk dancers El Tayrona will perform; Colombian food;

Adoption Journey: From Secret Thoughts to Open Talk

Barker Foundation Conference
Saturday, March 6 9:00am to 4:00pm
Rockville, Maryland
For more information, contact www.barkerfoundation.org or 301-229-8300

Meet Us At the Zoo!
Sunday, March 28 2:00 - 4:00 pm
Meet Friends of FANA at the National Zoo in Washington, DC for a
Colombian "Animal Hunt". For all ages. Bring a friend!

Workshop on "Preparing for a Homeland Visit to Colombia"
Saturday, April 17 9:30am - 12:30pm
Location to be announced
What should you expect, how do you prepare, and how do expectations change based on your child's age and place in the adoption journey? Led by adoption experts, families, and adoptees who have made return visits to Colombia. For parents only please.

Cocktail Party and Auction of Colombian Art and Crafts
September, 2004 (date TBD)
For more information or to volunteer to help, email fanafriends@comcast.net

Soccer Clinic: The soccer clinic for children will NOT be taking place in March. We may try to do this another time.

Recent Friends of FANA D.C. Events

In mid October, Friends of FANA sponsored a very successful presentation at Georgetown University on "What is it Like to Live in Colombia"? Miguel Ceballos, Program Director of the Colombia Program at the Center for Latin American Studies led an informative session on life in Colombia today. Thank you to GU student Julie Olker for helping organize this program for middleschool and older children and their families.

In Early November, "Getting to Know Colombia" was the topic for children ages pre-K through 2nd grade. Over 20 children participated through discussion, art, and music in learning about their native country. We smelled coffee beans, touched emeralds and gold, and made molas, traditional Colombian wall hangings with stories about Colombia. Thank you to all the parents and children who participated, and especially those who helped organize and run the activities!

Fundraising Update

Thank you to everyone who has contributed thus far for our annual campaign for FANA. We have raised over $34,000 to date to help support FANA's ongoing operating costs, including the foster care it currently provides for over 40 children. It is not too late to contribute. Donations can be sent to the address above marked "for FANA". Every donation is gratefully received by FANA and its children.

News from Bogota

Referrals of children for adoption are coming slowly to many of the Colombian adoption programs. This is due to changes within the Colombian welfare system and is being experienced by many Colombian orphanages. We will update you as this situation changes.

Board Elections

At the November meeting of the Board, five members were elected to two-year terms and officers were elected. The current Board membership is: Laura Capaldini, President; Ricardo Nunez, Vice President; Megan Dennis, Secretary; Maria Van Wie, Treasurer. At large members are Valerie Light, Karen Lightfield, Jeanette Ryan, Tracy Stanton, and Lisa White. Thank you all for your contributions to Friends of FANA!

FANA Sponsorship Program

The Barker Foundation has a sponsorship program to provide extra funding to FANA, specifically for the care of special needs children. Families participating in the program receive semi-annual updates on the children they sponsor. The cost of the program is $50 per month. For more information or to sign up to become a sponsor, please contact Colleen McLain at cmclain@barkerfoundation.org, or 301-229-8300.

Colombian Restaurants and Resources

Our website has a new link to a nationwide listing of Colombian restaurants and foods. We often receive requests for local suggestions. Two local Colombian restaurants recommended to us are Los Arrieros, a restaurant and nightclub in Silver Spring,MD (301-495-9459); and Restaurante Monserrate, on Glebe Road in Arlington, VA (703-528-2789). Other local Latin American restaurants serve Colombian dishes. If you know of others restaurants of interest, please send a note to info@fanafriendsdc.org.

Roses from Colombia

Trade Fact of the Week: America imported 2.2 billion flowers last year (2003).
The Numbers: Number of roses imported from Colombia, 2003: 720 million

Colombian rose imports -- grown and picked by 90,000 workers in fields around Bogota -- peak each year at 110 million roses in the first weeks of February, and again at around 80 million before Mother's Day. During these weeks,about 35 planes full of roses take off from Colombia to arrive in Miami every day.

From Progressive Policy Institute Trade Fact of the Week (2/18/2004)

Become a Member!

Members of Friends of FANA receive discounts to our activities and invitations to special events and have the option to be listed in our new Membership Directory. Dues go to pay for our ongoing operating costs including newsletters, the website, and general expenses. Membership is $30 per family per year. Please use the donation and membership form included with this mailing (or email info@fanafriendsdc.org for a form).

Contact Us

If you have suggestions, comments, or ideas for Friends of FANA, or want to help in any way, please feel free to contact us! We can be reached at info@fanafriendsdc.org or fanafriends@comcast.net. We look forward to hearing from you.

Friends of FANA is a parent group which provides Colombian educational, cultural, and social activities for the families of children from Colombia. We also support FANA, the Fundacion para la Asistencia de la Ninez Abandonada. Friends of FANA is a 501c(3) member organization.