Be The Answer for Tommy and Zemzem

19 11 2009

Tommy and Zemzem.  Two people who have fought everyday of their lives, to live…and to succeed.  This year, Be The Answer will help them and their families stay together, live together, and succeed together.  And we need you to help to make it happen. 

This Holiday Season, Be The Answer is launching our first annual Hope for the Holidays Project. 

By donating $40 or more, you will not only become a Be The Answer Member, you will also give Zemzem, Tommy, and so many others some Hope for the Holidays!  

Read the amazing stories of Tommy and Zemzem and you will learn how we can Be The Answer for them and so many others.  Please donate today and bring Hope for the Holidays to Tommy, Zemzem and our world’s millions of orphans. 


Tommy is 15.  Fourteen years ago, Tommy was found living outside a bar in South Africa…alone.  His only companion was the bar owner’s dog.

Soon after he was found, Tommy was brought to TLC Ministries, a home-based childcare facility outside of Johannesburg, where the director, Thea Jarvis, began to raise him.  He was sick from the time he spent living outside with a dog.  After a string of illnesses it was discovered that he was also HIV positive.  Doctors gave him only weeks to live.

Thea scrounged together enough money to afford the ARV drugs that have saved Tommy’s life.  Today he is a strapping young man.  Tommy is now a leader to the 70 children that live at TLC Ministries.  He is an inspirational speaker (he brought tears to our eyes at the 2009 Joint Council Conference) and is attending trade-school with a goal of being a world-class chef.

But the conditions Tommy was born with, and the illnesses Tommy suffered during the first eight years of life, caused him to miss out academically.  His eyesight is poor, barely able to read the pages of a book.

As part of this year’s Hope for the Holidays Project, Be The Answer will help Tommy get the computer he needs.  With accessibility options, he could read enlarged print and use voice controls to connect to other students.  Please support Tommy and other children with physical challenges by donating $40 and becoming a Member of Be The Answer.

Please Be The Answer and make sure that Tommy is able to live to his full potential!


When you think of Ethiopia, what image first comes to mind?  Whatever it is, our guess is that it is not a vision of a petite powerhouse businesswoman named Zemzem! 

A few years ago, Zemzem and her three children lived on a monthly stipend from a sponsoring charity.  After participating in a family empowerment program that provided basic finance and business management training, Zemzem earns almost three times the amount she had received in the program.

Zemzem has bought a piece of land, built a small retail store and most importantly has continued to provide safety, permanency, and love for her three children.

Over the last year, her business has grown, providing enough to feed her family.  Today she has plans to expand her business and send her children to school.  However, she cannot afford to both feed her family and save the money needed to expand the store.  So during Joint Council’s recent trip to Ethiopia, Zemzem, using the skills she learned through the family empowerment program, presented us with a business plan for a grant.

Here is where you and our Hope for the Holidays Project come in…become a Member of Be The Answer by donating $40 today!  As a Member of Be The Answer, you will be supporting our Hope for the Holiday’s Project and most importantly – you will give Zemzem and other families a chance to grow, thrive…and to continue to provide safety, permanency, and love to their families.

Donate now to help Tommy and Zemzem!




One response

20 03 2010
facebook chips

i was starting to imagine i would probably end up being the sole man who cared about this, at the very least now i recognize i’m not odd 🙂 i am going to make sure to look into a number additional threads immediately after i get a little caffeine in me, it’s tricky to read with out my coffee, I was really late last evening grinding facebook poker and after getting my fill with a few ales i finished up getting rid of all my facebook poker chips cheers 🙂

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