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“Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education.”
--Martin Luther King, Jr.
Dutch Meyer has lived his life in service, his work primarily focusing on assisting people living with disabilities. Dutch’s work brought him around the globe. Rwanda, Kenya, Vietnam and Afghanistan have been a few of the countries whose people and struggles have pulled at his heart-strings. As happy as he was with the work he had accomplished, in the past several years, Dutch felt a calling to adopt one area of the globe and settle down. As he began to wonder where his work might best be utilized, Dutch made a friend through a friend who invited him to yet another country, this time in West Africa. Dutch soon found himself in Kwahu-Tafo, a small village in eastern Ghana, population 9000.
As Dutch tells it, “After the obligatory visit to Nana, 'The Chief,' and the traditional exchange of gifts, I was invited to sit and was served a drink. Nana asked the purpose of my visit.” Dutch told him of his search to find the perfect place where he could make a difference. After carefully listening to Dutch, Nana graciously welcomed him into the community.
With the chief and people’s blessing, Dutch founded Yeko Anim, meaning “progress” in Twi. The mission of Yeko Anim is to promote sustainable development and education in the village of Kwahu-Tafo. Like many non-profits that use fiscal sponsorships, Yeko Anim raises money under the umbrella organization Kids First Enterprise/Ghana, a registered 501 C 3, so all donations are tax-deductible.
This year’s 2011-2012 programs include: Micro-Lending, Cheap Eats/Henry A. Politz Scholastic Award, Kelly Ann Brown Scholarships, Needy Children’s Fund and the Disability Action Fund.
When Kelly’s brother, David, was approached by friend Dutch Meyer with the opportunity to help kids go to school, David jumped at the chance. David, like Kelly, is adored by kids and understands the value of giving a kid a leg up. Kelly knew intuitively the gift of the presence of children. As Christ said, “Unless you become like one of these, you cannot enter the Kingdom of God.” Being present and open and receptive, second nature to a child, is the message of Christ and the Buddha.
Eleven Kelly Ann Brown Scholarships were given to eleven students in a small village in Ghana. Dutch and his wife spend a great deal of time traveling between their home in Seattle and the village. They have encountered grant recipients who proudly exclaim, “I’m a Kelly Ann Brown scholarship student!”
Dutch and David received a sweet and sincere letter from one of the students attending the University of Cape Town:
I am very proud to be a beneficiary of the Kelly Ann Brown educational fund. It has been of great benefit to me! Without this assistance, it might have been impossible for me to continue my school this year. Here in school I read Financial Accounting, Business Management and Education (B.ED SOCIAL SCIENCES) and for that matter I have the prospect of becoming an Accountant or a Tutor. For this reason, I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to you Mr. Brown for your sincere love towards others and me in particular. You have proved your love by your works. I say a big THANK YOU and may Jehovah provide a full reward for you. Not forgetting Mr. Dutch, I say THANKS A LOT. You brought the fund to Tafo just close to me so I benefited. You spent your precious time on this work though it might have cost you much. Yes! This is brotherly love. Your selfless effort would by no means go unrecognized by Jehovah. Hope to see you again."
Click here for more information on Yeko Anim.