That's a Terrible Idea... When do we Start?!
By American Foundation for Children with AIDS
That's a Terrible Idea... When do we Start?! Feb 07, 2023
Season 2: Episode 10: Back from D.R. Congo
In this podcast episode, Tanya and Jen come together to discuss Tanya's trip to D.R. Congo.
The American foundation for Children with AIDS helps to support children and caregivers who are infected and affected by HIV/AIDS. Our work with program partners includes medical, educational support as well as helping communities to implement sustainability and livelihood projects.
To learn more about the American Foundation for Children with AIDS, you can visit our website
Season 2 Episode 9 Tanya Preps for D.R. Congo
Listen in this week as Tanya and Jen connect to talk about how Tanya preps to do program visits in the D.R. Congo.
To learn more about how you can help children with AIDS and to learn more about the work of the American Foundation for Children with AIDS, please visit our website at www.afcaids.org
Season 2: Episode 8 Chasing Peace with Kevin and Kiki Part 2
Jen sits with volunteers Kevin and Kiki for the second half of the episode where the 3 discuss their experiences before, during and after having gone to Zimbabwe with the American Foundation for Children with AIDS's Vacation with a Purpose program.
Season 2: Episode 8 Chasing Peace with Kevin and Kiki Part 2
Jen, Kevin and Kiki had SO much to talk about, we rolled it into a 2 part episode where the three discuss their experiences with AFCA's Vacation with a Purpose to Zimbabwe, and thoughts of how the 2 plan to change their behaviors in order to live more peaceful, mindful lives now that they are home.
Season 2: Episode 8: Chasing Peace with Kevin and Kiki Part 1
Join us for PART 1 of Jen interviewing volunteer super couple Kevin and Kiki as they talk about their takeaways from their Vacation with a Purpose to Zimbabwe this summer.
Season 2: Episode 7 Period Poverty with special guest, James Gondwe
Please join us as we discuss period poverty with Executive Director, James Gondwe of the Centre For Youth & Development in Mzuzu, Malawi.
Centre for Youth and Development is a local development non-governmental organization with an innovative people-led approach to delivering United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
Children, Youth and Women are the main focus of their development work, and all of their interventions are anchored and centred on sectors of Education, Health and Economic Empowerment, empowering individuals so they build opportunities and responsibilities to develop societies in which others have the right to do better.
Women in rural Malawi often face challenges and cultural taboos around menstruation that create inequity in education, work and other opportunities. AFCA has partnered with James and the Centre For Youth & Development in order to provide period kits, so girls may continue attending school.
To learn more about the Center For Youth & Development and Executive Director James Gondwe, please visit their website here.
To support AFCA's mission of supporting children infected and affected by AIDS, please visit our website at www.afcaids.org
Season 2 Episode 6: The JuJu Takeover Episode
This week is a TAKEOVER episode and Juju Weaver, Tanya's eldest, is in charge of the mic. Listen along as the two talk about what it's like to be raised by humanitarian aid workers.
Season 2 Episode 5: The Work of Summer
This last summer brought a lot of joy, but with that joy also came a lot of hard work. AFCA and Executive Director, Tanya Weaver have been working away behind the scenes to expand on our program's impact to help build sustainable communities. Join us as we discuss the work that happened over the summer to continue to help children infected and affected by HIV/AIDS in Africa.
Season 2 Epispode 4: Poop Stories
We all poop, and on this week's episodes, Jen and Tanya talk about the places they've pooped, the worst toilets they've come across, and how open defecation is a real problem for so many people.
In the spirit of #WorldToiletDay, the two discuss the issues that stem from lack of hygiene and sanitation, and what AFCA is doing to help 49 families infected and affected by AIDS gain access to safe and decent toilets.
Spread the #LOOLOVE with us this #WorldToiletDay and support our hygiene and sanitation project.
You can find more here:
Season 2 Episode 3: communion with a little "c"
The act or instance of sharing
The word communion when spelled with a little “c” means an act or instance of sharing. As we begin to gather for the holiday seasons to come, a wonderful way to inject some gratitude into these gatherings is to host a communion in your home.
The idea is simple. Gather with a handful of close friends, family, or neighbors, share a bit of food, or drinks, and instead of spending your money on a night out, donate what you would have spent to an AFCA project, and share communion with children infected or affected by AIDS this season.
A glass of wine and a cheese board can change the life of a child. What incredible impact the smallest of acts can have on giving someone a hand up in life. When you gather to host a communion in your home, your impact will be reported back to you so that you and your guests can see their kindness in action.
You have so many choices when it comes to giving back this holiday season, but when you take the time to give mindfully and to know where your dollars are spent, you will have a deeper, more meaningful connection with those that you’re helping. AFCA works directly with our program partners and knows the stories and names of our beneficiaries personally. When you donate to AFCA, you can be sure that your dollars are going directly to those you want to receive help.
AFCA’s programs are built to impact the sustainability of the community long term. Each decision is weighed carefully by community stakeholders. AFCA’s executive director, Tanya Weaver listens to what is needed, how it will be reported on, and how it will impact the community over time. Self-sufficiency, environmental impact, local sourcing of materials, training, job creation, and growth are some of the many aspects considered. We have seen so many of these programs go on to grow, and spread across other communities. One small microloan at a time, funding projects that in turn alleviate extreme poverty in communities.
How this impacts AIDS
There are so many people that need help, but AFCA’s mission is to help children and those that are infected and affected by AIDS. Our work started off with providing medication to children, then food, and since has grown to create sustainable programs that alleviate extreme poverty, which in turn provides sustainable livelihoods for women and children, helping to end the cycle and the spread of HIV/AIDS. When we are able to give people a hand up, and dignity in being able to provide for themselves, the community becomes stronger and can stand on its own.
How can you get involved?
You can sign up to host a small communion gathering and invite a small gathering of people over to your home. It can be for wine, cheese, or order pizza! Any act or instance of sharing counts. We suggest an amount of $30 donation per person as an example of what someone would spend on a night out. You provide the food, AFCA will provide information on the work that we do in a video, as well as a handout with more information that you can offer your guests.
Once you’re ready to host, AFCA provides a fundraiser landing page for your communion gathering so that you can see and measure your impact! Once you’ve gathered, your guests have donated and it’s been reported to AFCA, AFCA will report back to you, the impact of your intimate gathering and how you were able to share with those in need.
Season 2: Episode 2: The Impact of Climate
Over the years, Tanya has seen first hand, the impact of climate on AFCA's various programs. In this week's episode, Jen and Tanya talk about the endless challenges that these new weather patterns create.
Excessive heat, drought, flooding, erosion and more are all impacting every part of life for our beneficiaries. Crops, raising animals, water accessibility and safety are just a few examples of what is at risk.
AFCA considers how the changing environment will impact our sustainability programs, and why it's important for us to all be more resourceful, and less wasteful in caring for our planet.
One sustainable project we are working on is Loo Love! Loo Love works with local community members to build long drop style toilets for families that are infected or affected by HIV/AIDS. You can learn more about this project and support our work here.
Season 2: Episode 1: Joys of the Summer
Jen and Tanya kick off season 2 of the podcast and talk about the joys of summer as well as implementing a joy practice every evening, and Tanya shares her book of joys. We're so excited to be back and to have the season ahead to tell you all the good things that are going on behind the scenes with AFCA and our programs. We hope that you too found some joy this summer and we'd love to hear your joy moments!
Episode 10: It Takes a Village, so let's build one!
Jen and Tanya catch up on extracurriculars. Jen recaps her yoga women's retreat and pitches the idea of The Village, a group associated with The American Foundation for Children with AIDS with the objective to bring those that participated in AFCA's adventure travel programs, volunteers, and donors that want to have a closer involvement with the organization.
Join the AFCA Village to volunteer, get more involved, learn about Adventure Travel Opportunities, or ways to use your gifts to further the work of AFCA.
We need every one of you! Whether it's helping to spread our social messages, sewing, helping pack a container, writing blogs, creating content, sharing stories of trips you've taken with our Vacation with a Purpose, or Climb Up teams, we want to hear from you, and share these stories with each other in our Facebook group. Your shared stories may be the spark for someone else to travel with us. You can simply change a life by some of the smallest actions. JOIN US TODAY!
Episode 9: Volunteer Suzanne Heskin talks about traveling with AFCA
Join Jen as she sits with Suzanne Heskin, who has volunteered with AFCA and traveled with both Climb Up, Kilimanjaro, as well as Vacation with a Purpose Zimbabwe programs.
If you are interested in learning more about our adventures, and how you too can plan a once in a lifetime trip that helps spread hope to those infected and affected by AIDS, you can learn more at www.afcaids.org/adventure
Trips for 2023 are forming now!
Episode 8: From fitness class to the top of Kilimanjaro
Stefanie Watkins didn't see it coming, the day she met Tanya in a fitness class that one day, she would be beside her and a handful of other women, summiting Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania
Join Jen in a conversation with AFCA's Board President, Stefanie as they chat about her volunteerism and adventures with AFCA and how meeting Tanya spark a series of adventures and a reconnection for her birth country, Africa, as well as the children and people she's met along the way.
If you're interested in traveling along with us, AFCA offers a variety of adventure travel experiences that give you an opportunity to work and live alongside a community, while learning something new about yourself. Hone your leadership skills, learn how to use new tools, sharpen your problem-solving skills, and get real-world international experience that will translate to many areas of your life!
You can learn about these amazing trips on our website. Trips are starting to form for 2023 to Kenya and Zimbabwe, and we need YOU our volunteers to travel with us, spread hope, and have the adventure of a lifetime!
Episode 7: In the Warehouse with Betsy Dorsey
The AFCA warehouse depends on donations of medical supplies and money to ship containers of supplies to program partners in Africa. Our warehouse, located in Lebanon, Pennsylvania is run by one of our extraordinary volunteers, Betsy Dorsey. In this episode, Jen chats with Betsy about her volunteer experience with AFCA, and what drew her to step into this role.
If you'd like to help us pack a container, organize supplies or get in some service hour requirements, our warehouse will gladly accept your help. You can reach out to Betsy directly to schedule your time, or event at email@example.com
We have a laundry list of donation needs, but would be thrilled to receive infant incubators, hospital beds, and medical supplies-especially for maternal health and safe baby deliveries.
If you're a sewer, we'll gladly take layette kits, you can find the pattern here on our website!
AFCA provides unique volunteer experiences in order to build hope in communities infected and affected by AIDS. We hope that you find inspiration in Betsy's story, and will join us in our mission at any level, from volunteering hours, sewing, traveling, climbing mountains, or donating. No action is too small to bring hope to those that need it.
Episode 6: The magic of mothers
In this special Mother's Day episode, Tanya and Jen talk about their moms, being moms, and how to help mothers in other parts of the world. You don't even need to be a mom to nurture and care for others. The two talk about the importance adults play in the mentorship of children and celebrate the magic of mothers and the societal need for them to create stronger, healthier, and more sustainable communities here and globally.
There are many ways to which AFCA supports mothers in our programs.
Supplying medicine and medical supplies so moms can access what they need for their children;
Training for trades like sewing or hairdressing so they can earn a living with dignity;
Providing goats, seeds, tools and training so they can provide their families with healthy food
Supporting community gardens where moms can get jobs growing food for the community and earning a living wage for their family;
And last year we completed construction of a maternity ward that now welcomes some 300 newborns into the world every month!
What a wonderful way to honor a mom in your life, than by supporting another mom.
You can make a donation in anyone's name, and a confirmation will be sent to them as well!
Episode 5: The Edge of Adventure: A Conversation with Adam Asher
In this episode, Jen sits with media executive, creator, adventurer, and founder of The Edge of Adventure podcast, Adam Asher who looks to live life #beyondstatusquo
Recently, Adam had Tanya on his own podcast, and you can catch that episode here!
AFCA has joined other organizations and adventure travelers on Adam's new app, Rugged Compass which looks to connect those that want to travel for a higher purpose and to truly see the people of the world.
If you'd like to join the community where adventure and purpose intersect, you can do that here https://ruggedcompass.com/
Additionally, if you are ready to take a trip of a lifetime that serves humankind, look no further than AFCA's Vacation with a Purpose program. We currently still have open team spots for Summer of 2022 traveling to Zimbabwe in July as well as future trips to start filling up.
To see a list of Vacation with a Purpose and Climb Up trips, you can visit our site here to learn all about our adventure travel options.
Episode 4: Tech meltdowns, the power of people IRL, and watching Finding Nemo with villagers
Jen and Tanya catch up on networking to build awareness around AFCA’s programs and Jen’s goal to raise the cost of a Greenhouse from Park Ridge to Zimbabwe. Tanya talks about her volunteer teaching geography, and teaching kids “Game face” when it comes to trying other culture’s food. Jen makes a mistake on social media, and learns from it. Jen is feeling fried and frustrated with technology.
Good news alerts sewing machines went to the Boyebi Center in Gemena, D.R. Congo.The Boyebi center trains women in hairdressing and tailoring, creating livelihoods and stopping the cycle of AIDS. The challenges and the joys of working in the D.R. Congo.
See some photos and learn more about work in Gemena here.
Episode 3: Love stories, Weekly struggles and the value of flexibility
Jen and Tanya learn more about each other's love stories, commiserate on how easy it is for a working mother's schedule to blow up, and express gratitude for having each other as colleagues.
The two compare stories on how they decided where to set their family roots, and how they both intended to adopt children, but life took them in a different direction.
Episode 2: Vacation with a Purpose Zimbabwe
Jen and Tanya chat about AFCA's Vacation with a Purpose program, the details, costs and more. Jen plans her first trip with the program to Zimbabwe with her 13 year old son, Charlie. We chat about how these programs change the lives of those that go, how they benefit our programs and relationships that remain even after the trip is over. Other topics include how Aiden, Tanya's son might be the worlds best future boyfriend, and our love hate relationship with smoothies.
Episode 1: Introduction to Jen and Tanya, AFCA's work and how terrible ideas can be wonderful.
This podcast is a potentially terrible idea.... or is it?
Tanya Weaver, our Executive Director joins Jen Panattoni, Marketing Director to chat about how AFCA is build on the faith in people to create positive change in the world.
Welcome listeners to the American Foundation for Children with AIDS Podcast where we discuss potentially terrible ideas turned terrific ones. This Podcast is a potential terrible idea, but we are hoping that you find our stories and conversations interesting enough to want to learn more about AFCA's work and how you can get involved! We're spreading hope, and we hope you will join us.
We're also completely new to the Podcast scene, our episodes might be a little less polished and scrappy, like US!
To learn more about AFCA, you can check us out on www.afcaids.org