Wednesday, December 1, 2010

World AIDS Day

This World AIDS Day we celebrate the lives of the children at Beat the Drum Village.  Fifteen lives who, because of compassion, commitment and care, were saved.   Fifteen lives who are beating AIDS and who have bright futures because of people, just like you, who have given generously.

Today, December 1, 2010, people all over the world will pledge to make a difference in the fight against AIDS.

This World AIDS Day we ask that you pledge to make a difference at Beat the Drum Village.  Please donate today.  Your donation will help these special orphans continue their fight against AIDS, a battle so many around the world are losing.

Let's build a Village together,
Stacy M. Troubh

Donors making a contribution today will receive a complimentary DVD copy of the film, BEAT THE DRUM.

Meet Rebecca

Rebecca is eight years old.  She was born in Marsabit in northern Kenya and at five years old was admitted to one of Beat the Drum Village's sister orphanages in Kenya - a home for orphans, but not specializing in the care of children with HIV/AIDS.  Rebecca's health worsening, she was one of five children living at this orphanage who were relocated to Beat the Drum Village, a facility that could better serve their medical needs.

Since arriving at Beat the Drum Village, her health has improved dramatically.  She is a jovial young girl who enjoys reading and school.  Recently, she was named the best student in grade two within the entire Naivasha County, the county in which her school, Lucy Amen Junior Academy, is located.

Inspired by those that have touched her life, Rebecca aspires to be a nurse when she grows up.

On this World AIDS Day, let's celebrate Rebecca's transformation and bright future since arriving at Beat the Drum Village.

BEAT THE DRUM discussion at International School in Atlanta area

BEAT THE DRUM writer/producer, W. David McBrayer, spoke to a group of students from around the world at the English for Internationals School outside of Atlanta.   This forum generated productive discussion about the AIDS crisis in Africa as students from countries such as Brazil, Serbia and Morocco were encouraged and inspired by the message of the film and the efforts of Beat the Drum Village.

BEAT THE DRUM on DVD:  This Year's Perfect Holiday Gift

This holiday season, consider giving a DVD of the award-winning film which started Beat the Drum Village.  Winner of over thirty international awards, BEAT THE DRUM tells the story of a young Zulu boy, Musa, who is orphaned after a mysterious "curse" strikes his village.  To help his grandmother, Musa sets out for Johannesburg with his father's last gift, a handmade tribal drum, in search of work.  While on his journey, he is confronted with the stark realities of urban life, but his spirit never wavers.

Available on, profits from the sale of each DVD directly support the children at Beat the Drum Village.   When purchasing on Amazon, be sure to buy from seller, Beat the Drum Village.

Please Join Our Efforts

You can help "Spread the word" today.   Become a fan on Facebook and share this with a friend.  One click could result in the next donation.

We thank you for your support, but we need many, many more supporters to ensure these special children continue to be cared for and to add more homes and more children to the Village.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Meet Julius, Atlanta Fundraiser, Eunice goes to High School

This month, we are excited to share with you an upcoming regional fundraiser in Georgia and to let you know about the great progress in the education of one special orphan. But first, we'd like to introduce you to another one of the special kids living at Beat the Drum Village.

Meet Julius
Julius is a jovial and hard working nine-year-old boy. He is from Nyeri County in central Kenya where both of his parents died when he was three. After the death of his parents, Julius was sent to live with his aunt, though she was ultimately unable to care for him.

His health worsening, Julius was taken in by one of Beat the Drum Village's sister orphanages in Kenya - a home for orphans, but not specializing in the care of children with HIV/AIDS. During a medical check-up at this orphanage, Julius and four other orphans tested positive for HIV and were moved to Beat the Drum Village. Now these five children live in the same home under the care of one housemother. Julius calls Beat the Drum Village, "home," and refers to the other kids in his home as his "brothers" and "sisters."

Julius' health has improved considerably since arriving at the Village now that he has proper medical care. He works hard in school and has the academic performance to show for it. In his free time, Julius enjoys playing soccer with his friends.

BEAT THE DRUM screening and writer/producer Q&A at regional fundraiser
A regional fundraiser in the Atlanta area! On Saturday, October 23 at 5:30 PM a Beat the Drum Village fundraiser will be held at Cumberland Community Church in Smyrna, Georgia. This special night will feature a screening of the movie BEAT THE DRUM and a question and answer session with the film's writer/producer, W. David McBrayer. It was this film that made the Village possible and proceeds from the fundraiser will support Beat the Drum Village. Everyone in the Atlanta area are encouraged to attend. Please email to RSVP or for more information.

Please join our efforts
There are four ways you can help Beat the Drum Village:
  1. Spread the word
  2. Support a child
  3. Build a house
  4. Visit the Village
You can help "Support a child" today. In addition to ongoing support, we have a specific need to help with the education of one special orphan. Eunice, whom we shared with you in a previous newsletter, is currently in the eighth grade and will be the first child from Beat the Drum Village to attend high school. In November, she will take her Kenyan Certificate of Primary Education in order to begin high school in early 2011. High school means more education and greater opportunities, though in the short-term means additional school fees. Please consider making a donation to Beat the Drum Village to cover the cost of these fees. Doing so will help one girl with HIV/AIDS in Africa start high school, a milestone realized by far too few children with her circumstances.

We are so thankful for those of you who have helped the lives of these special orphans already. We need many more to ensure their continued well being and to add more homes and more children to the Village.

Let's build a village together,

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Meet Julia, Village Visit, IB Conference, NCC Screening

We've been busy this summer spreading the word about Beat the Drum Village and have exciting progress to share plus a story from a supporter who visited the Village in July. But first, we'd like to introduce you to another one of the special kids living at Beat the Drum Village.

Meet Julia
Julia Nyambura is one of the fifteen orphans living with HIV at Beat the Drum Village. Julia is 15 and in the sixth grade at Lucy Amen Academy. Her story is similar to other children at the Village, but by no means less heartbreaking. Her parents died when she was young and she was left to live with her uncle. Her uncle was ultimately unable to care for her and she was left alone. After a childhood filled with suffering, she is thriving at Beat the Drum Village. She now aspires to be a judge and enjoys playing football.

Julia's story is just one of fifteen stories. Just one of fifteen lives you are impacting through your generous support of Beat the Drum Village.

Beat the Drum Village presented to students at IB World Conference
In early August, Beat the Drum Village was invited to present at the International Baccalaureate World Student Conference in Corvallis, Oregon. The mission of the conference was to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. Beat the Drum Village presented at two, hour-long sessions to groups of 40 students.

Having the opportunity to share our work with these bright students was an honor. Their warm welcome, thoughtful questions and enthusiastic desire to get involved was inspiring. Since the conference, several students have reached out to express interest in developing fundraising campaigns in their own communities. We look forward to sharing their efforts in the coming months.

BEAT THE DRUM screening at Ebenezer's Coffeehouse
Later in August, Ebenezer's Coffeehouse in Washington, DC held a special screening of BEAT THE DRUM as part of "Week of Justice," hosted by National Community Church (NCC). "Week of Justice" was filled with events that highlighted pressing issues around the globe to equip and mobilize individuals to take action.

Thank you to NCC for including BEAT THE DRUM in such an important week and providing us the opportunity to tell others about the needs of the Village.

Please join our efforts
At the BEAT THE DRUM screening, we showed a special video we created for the event. Check it out on YouTube: In the video, we cite the four ways you can help:

     1.  Spread the word
     2.  Support a child
     3.  Build a house
     4.  Visit the Village

Shari from Georgia reached out to us to share her "Visit the Village" experience:

I visited Beat the Drum Village in July 2010 on a mission trip with our church, Mt. Pisgah United Methodist in Roswell, Georgia. We visited several orphanages in Kenya but this one in particular really touched my heart. To begin with, the caretakers of this village, John and Mary, were amazing. They have taken on an enormous responsibility to care for these children along with five children of their own. You could feel the love emanating from them and it was reflected in the children's faces. They were so well cared for and healthy. You would have never known they were HIV positive. I know that was not the case when they arrived. In having a house and an "auntie" for each small group it seemed more like a family environment. The kids were so proud to show off their home. I feel blessed to have been able to experience this in person and will forever be changed by it.

Shari's church has since raised the funds to build a greenhouse at the Village in order to grow food, further providing for the needs of the kids.

We look forward to featuring other stories about individuals like Shari who are committed to making a difference in the lives of these special children.

Let's build a village together,
Stacy M. Troubh

Sunday, August 22, 2010

BTD Village Video on YouTube

We just created this video about Beat the Drum Village.

We'll be showing it for the first time after a special screening of BEAT THE DRUM this Wednesday, August 25 at Ebenezer's Coffeehouse on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.

Please share it with others!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

News from the Village

We continue to seek ways to further spread the word about Beat the Drum Village in Kenya and are excited to tell you about our efforts. But first, we wanted to take a moment to share the story of one of these special children.

Meet Eunice
Eunice Nyambura is one of the fifteen orphans living with HIV at Beat the Drum Village. Eunice comes from Taita, a coastal part of Kenya, where her single-mother died when Eunice was very young. Eunice and her sister were left in the hands of their grandmother, who was unable to care for them and the two children soon found themselves on the street. They were rescued and placed in an orphanage; however, in November 2007, Eunice tested positive for HIV and could no longer stay there. She was welcomed by Beat The Drum Village and has been thriving since.
Eunice is currently in eighth grade at Lucy Amen Academy and will be entering high school next year. She enjoys playing football, reciting poems and singing and aspires to be a nurse. Her sister is also at Beat the Drum Village.
Eunice's story is just one of fifteen stories. Just one of fifteen lives you are impacting through your generous support of Beat the Drum Village.
BEAT THE DRUM DVD on Amazon helps Beat the Drum Village
We are now offering DVDs of the film, BEAT THE DRUM, on Amazon. Profits from these sales directly support the children at Beat the Drum Village. If you haven't yet seen this great film, which inspired the creation of the Village, please do. It also makes a great gift. When purchasing on Amazon, be sure to buy from seller: Beat the Drum Village.
Beat the Drum Village needs your support
We are working on a number projects to further the awareness of Beat the Drum Village, but the needs of these kids are immediate. In April, we asked for individuals or groups to pledge to support the Village for a year through a monthly contribution. Thanks to those of you answered. We are steps closer with your help but we unfortunately are not there yet.
There are three ways you can help:
  1. If you haven't yet given and have it on your heart to do so, please do. Visit the website at to donate.
  2. Tell a friend about Beat the Drum Village. Forward this email and encourage friends to sign up for this newsletter.
  3. Buy the movie. Visit and buy the DVD from seller: Beat the Drum Village.
We look forward to sharing details on additional projects as they come together and to bring you more stories from the Village.

Let's build a village together,
Stacy Troubh

Monday, April 12, 2010

Seven Days Later

It only takes 15...

That was lofty. But if we're going to make a difference we need to aim high and share the big dreams we have.

One week ago, we put a stake in the ground and asked for a miracle. That miracle? That 15 people would step forward and say, "I will support one of the 15 children at Beat the Drum Village for one year." In the seven days since that email was sent, we are a third of the way there. Through your generous giving, five children have support for a year.

Lofty? Yes. Unrealistic? Not at all.

Though what may have been unrealistic was the idea that 15 kids would be supported by 15 people. That doesn't need to be the case.

Instead of it taking 15 of us to support 15 orphans living with HIV/AIDS in Kenya, perhaps it takes 15 of those kids to move us - to motivate our souls and our spirits - to support them in any way we can.

There are 10 left. Will you let those 10 move you? We assumed we only needed 15, but the reality is we may need many more. Is $193 per month too much? What about $19? The goal is the goal and we welcome getting there with as many of you as possible.

Thank you to those whose gifts have helped get us to where we are today - whether you've given $10 or $1,000, the difference made in the lives of these kids is real.

For those of you thinking about giving, help us show the children living in Beat the Drum Village that this miracle is possible.

Let's build a village together,
Stacy Troubh

Send me an email at or log onto and sign up for a reoccurring donation today.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

It Only Takes 15

It only takes 15. Just 15 people and the children of Beat the Drum Village would be completely supported. Just 15 individuals, couples, families or groups of friends raising a hand to say:  I will provide the money needed to buy food, clothing and medicine for one HIV positive child living at Beat the Drum Village in Kenya.

March donations generated from the website did not reach our monthly goal, the amount required to meet the most basic needs of the 15 orphans living at Beat the Drum Village. After a conversation with my sister, Lauren, about the unfortunate reality of how challenging it will be to meet our goal month after month, she simply said:  You only need 15. 15 people who are willing to commit to monthly support. And she's right.

If just 15 people - or 15 couples, 15 families, 15 groups - committed to a reoccurring donation of $193 each month to meet the needs of one child, then our goal would be met. Funds that would directly and specifically benefit the lives of Dennis, Eunice, Julius, Rebecca, Abigail, Faith, Emmanuel, Andrew, Martin, Lucy, Julia, Baraku, Erick, Simon and Everline each and every day.

So this month our update has one goal: to begin the search for our 15.

I will be the first to make this commitment. Who will be number two?

Let's build a village together,

Become one of the 15 today. Send me an email at or log onto and sign up for a reoccurring donation of $193 per month. If you're unable to make this commitment right now, please help us find 14 others by forwarding this to a friend.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Welcome to Friends of Beat the Drum Village

Welcome to our blog!  If you're reading this post, you've probably already been to the Beat The Drum Village website.  And if you have, you already know who we are and what we're trying to do.  You may have even donated to the village or become a fan of the organization on Facebook.  Maybe you've seen the film that started it all.  And now you're reading our blog.

So why a blog?  Why now?

When we started raising money for the village, our goal was simply to get the word out.  To introduce you to the village and the 15 children who live there.  In December, we asked you to help us meet an urgent short-term need of $4,500 to help cover the cost of food, clothing and medical supplies.  Thanks to your generosity, we met that goal!

Now, however, it's time to focus on the big picture, to find a way to ensure these children have the long-term support they need.

We hope this blog is the first step.  We hope this blog will foster a community of active BTDV supporters, a community of "Friends" who are interested in making a sustained, significant impact in these orphans' lives.

If you want to make sure these 15 orphans will continue to receive the food, clothing and medical supplies they need while living in unique, family-style residences, if you want to see the village grow from 15 children to 50, from three houses to ten, if you want to be a part of the transformation from an orphanage reliant on donations for survival to a thriving "village" of children and caretakers equipped to grow their own food, then please consider becoming a Friend of Beat the Drum Village.  Friends are individuals who believe that sharing ideas, providing financial support and participating in these children's lives (perhaps by even visiting the village someday!) will make a real difference in Kenya.

As a first step, we invite you to read the update below, the first of many.  These updates, posted monthly, will show you how your generosity is making a significant impact in the lives of these children and our thoughts on how we can continue on this journey together.

We also invite you to share your thoughts by posting a comment or emailing us at  We may have brought this community of Friends together, but it is only through your participation -- sharing an idea, telling a friend or making a donation -- that we'll be able to meet our long-term goals.

Finally, to those of you who feel led to become a part of this community, please consider becoming a follower of this blog and signing up to receiving updates by email.  We need as many Friends as we can get!

Our Impact
As of February 28, 2010, support totals $5,525.  Thank you for your generous donations.  These funds are being used for food, water, medicine and clothing for the 15 orphans, five of whom were new to the village.  While the December campaign was to support only the five new children for an extended period of time, because of a decrease in donations outside of our efforts, our funds are being used to support all 15 children.  We now represent the primary source of financial support for these kids.

The Children
Unlike dormitory-style orphanages, Beat the Drum Village offers a true home environment for children living with HIV/AIDS.  Each home at Beat the Drum Village houses five children and their caretaker.  In future postings, we will spotlight one child, sharing his or her stories, aspirations, joys and needs.  It is our hope that you will get to know each and every special life you are touching so deeply.

Looking Ahead
We have established a monthly goal of $2,900.  This amount is what is required to meet the basic needs of all 15 children and their live-in caretakers for one month.  In future updates we'll share thoughts on the campaign to raise funds for the next house and longer term sustainability planning.

Thank you for continuing on this journey with us. Your support makes a difference.

Let’s build a village together,