Regular readers of the Lav Kokonas Facebook page may recall I posted a wee snippet about an appeal to find funding for this young Ni Vanuatu man in Port Vila. Brent’s story is beautiful “I want to setup a pottery teaching studio in Port Vila, Vanuatu; for unemployed youth and schools. Please help me to help others”, says Brent.
However to achieve his dream, he needs another $14,000 to be able to have a studio and equipment to make a living from sales and teaching.
Why doesn’t Brent go to the bank for a start up loan? It’s not that simple in Vanuatu. Here’s a little background, prepared Brent’s kiwi friend and mentor, David Sherar. ….
“Vanuatu is a developing country located in the South West Pacific between Australia and Fiji. It has a population of about 270,000 people. The country is poor, has huge unemployment and under 30% of the population is classified as literate. Getting even one person out of the unemployment trap is a huge achievement here. Brent Malessas has that chance with a little help from you and others like you. With your help, he can achieve a life of self-sufficiency and give hope to others too.
My wife and I have been supporting Brent to become a self-employed potter. He has been working from a small studio at our house for the last 18 months but due to failing health this arrangement will soon come to an end. Brent urgently needs to get into his own premises. We have contributed over $20,000 worth of plant, equipment and materials plus untold hours.”
We’ve setup a GIVE A LITTLE page to try to get the funds necessary to build Brent a new working and teaching studio and are actively seeking any help and donations we can. To put in into context, in 18 months while developing his skills, Brent has earned around $5,000 (85,000 vatu – Vanuatu’s currency) and will probably earn around $10-$15,000 a year for full-time work when he is established. This will come from his pottery sales, teaching pottery to school children and unemployed youth. Hardly a money spinner in anyone’s terms but in Vanuatu it would mean a self-sufficient future for him.
We really need your help so if you are happy to assist, please go to Givealittle and read more about him, what he has achieved and his mission. I am sure you will be delighted with what this motivated young man has achieved.
Like his Facebook page too to see regular updates of Brent’s progress. “