The Donors: Bruce and Elizabeth Francisco
The gift: Raising $50,000 and climbing
The cause: Tachileik Hill school in Myanmar
When Bruce Francisco was on a mission trip in Thailand a few years ago, he ran into Lian Pu, who had started a make-shift school for street children across the border in Myanmar.
Mr. Francisco talked to him about the project and gave him the $20 cash he had in his pocket. "He said this is the first time anyone has ever given me any money for my work," said Mr. Francisco, a retired art teacher. "I was quite touched by that."
After he returned home to Mississauga, Ont., Mr. Francisco and his wife, Elizabeth, began sending Mr. Pu $400 a month to help the school, called Tachileik Hill, which is run out of his home. They recently boosted that to $800 a month with the help of some family and friends, and they are now trying to raise $60,000 to build a new school. In total, the couple has raised around $50,000 over the past six years, including securing $10,000 in commitments for the building. Mr. Pu and his wife, Rose No, are now providing food, clothing, shelter and education for 28 children.
"They are such a wonderful couple," said Ms. Francisco who added that the pair doesn't take a salary. "They are living there as though these kids are their own."
The Franciscos are hoping to visit Mr. Pu and Ms. No next year, hopefully in time to see a start on the new building. "It's a passion for us," Mr. Francisco said.