Andrea Bocelli Foundation, the value of doing to build a better world
"So did I, as a boy, ask for help; I too have known the condition of need, I looked for support, for a hand that could rescue myself. Then I got the chance, or rather the joy, to reciprocate the good I received: a desire in crescendo that has become responsibility, overriding priority, ethical imperative. " Andrea Bocelli
The Foundation was created to help people in difficulty because of disease, poverty or social exclusion, promoting and supporting national and international projects in collaboration with other charitable organizations which pursue the same goals.
Andrea Bocelli wants to actively create the conditions so that less fortunate people can have the opportunity to discover and to give the best of themselves.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation was formed in July 2011 by the will of Maestro Bocelli and his family to return the affection and the closeness felt worldwide during his successful career.
Some of the Foundation's programs:
MOBILE CLINIC PROJET
Scenario: Haiti is a wonderful country where smile reigns in spite of everything, where people express every day, notwithstanding all the difficulties, the gratitude towards the gift of life, often singing, often kicking a ball.
The earthquake of 2010 has inevitably subtracted from the island the base to free it from poverty.
Haiti now needs us in order to be able to walk on her own in the future.
The ongoing program of ABF in collaboration with the St. Luke Foundation is related to health, and to the possibility for students (aged 2 to 24 years) to be are covered by health insurance.
The program is also involved in the community to which the children belong, including teachers and those who work in schools with the opportunity, for all of them, to have access to medical care.
Among the aims of this initiative there is a mobile clinic (with two doctors, three nurses and three auxiliary) present for one or more days in the individual communities, on a quarterly basis. Among the activities, including a vaccination program and targeted drugs delivery such as multivitamins, anti-flue, anti-parasitic, antibiotics, antipyretics, anti-hypertension, anti-diabetic ...
In the event that during screening are detected serious illness, the patients may be transfered at the St. Damien Pediatric Hospital and / or Saint Luc Hospital, located in Tabarre, Port-au-Prince.
Beneficiaries: five communities, five schools involved in the program, 2,850 children, 8850 direct beneficiaries, 16075 indirectly affected and 25,000 people whose health will benefit. These are the figures of the ABF project "Mobile Clinic"
MUSIC PROJECT – “VOICES OF HAITI”
Recognizing that art, and music in particular, has the ability to convey concepts such as beauty and self-expression, the Foundation has decided to inaugurate the "Voices of Haiti project" in the will to allow the most talented students of the St. Luc Fondation school to express their artistic qualities in the field of singing. The 3-year project involves the artistic direction of Maestro Malcolm Merriweather, four teachers of the schools as supervisors, 60 students.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation on this project supports:
• Wages of music teachers and students’ supervisors
• Contribution to the artistic director
• Organization costs
• Expenses for teaching tools and materials
• Any national / international travel expenses
W.H.E.A.T PROJECT 2014 – 2015
Educate children and their families to the concept of school as a chance of redemption for themselves and the community means to lead to the awareness that change must pass through children themselves. Education and respect for its value reaffirms the dignity of individuals enabling them to have a positive impact on the choices of their future. Besides, Education means respect for oneself, for one’s own body and a more responsible approach to sexuality and to the illnesses that from it can derive. Through street schools then pass messages whose impact not only on single students, but involve the community. A community that, if made aware of the context, can reduce the flow of migrants towards the slums, choosing to invest in their own territory.
a) Food incentive
Each of the students included in the project receives every day a meal consisting of rice, beans and vegetables. Together with this, 3 times during the school year a 5 Kg package of pasta is given to every student to bring to his/her family. These incentives make school attendance not only dependent on the will of the individual child but on the motivation of the whole family who is thus relieved from feeding every day all the family components (normally numerous!), and because of the guaranteed food contribution.
In a such a context, therefore, the role played by street schools is essential: safe places where children can find a “shelter” from the dangers of rampant crime and benefit from an education that is a potential source of redemption for them and the community itself.
The project activated in 2015 includes training on hygiene and nutrition with a staff of three nurses and two doctors. All children of the community are visited and a screening of all possible pathologies such as hernia, malaria, skin diseases – is carried out; all children receive anti-parasitis, vitamins, and some of them even antibiotics.
In the event that a child is seriously ill, he can be transferred to the hospital Saint Damien and / or Saint Luc.
The medical staff also plays training activities on hygiene and nutrition to students and their families
d) Training of teachers
The three schools are treated as state ones and are run by teachers and qualified personnel, all duly authorized. A local committee in constant connection with the Central Committee enables the correct answers to be given not only to educational needs, but also to the general conditions in which the school operate. All teachers partecipate in an education training program aligned with the national one.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation on this project supports:
- Periodic distribution 4 kg packages of pasta to families.
- Education: coverage of the annual structure (ex. uniforms, books) of the three road schools: St.Augustin (950 children) in Abricots, Jeremie, S. Philomene (400 children) in Kenscoff, Notre Dame Du Rosaire (400 children) in Croix des Bouquets.
- Food: to provide to each of the 1,750 children one meal a day.
- Health programs
- Organization and training: All teachers are included in a periodic training program that follows the national education program.
- ABF WATER TRUCK
Since 2013 the Foundation supports a tanker truck that deals with the distribution of water in the slums of Cité Soleil each day, 3 times a day, 6 days a week. Having detected the actual need of water and having noted the effectiveness of its distribution, from 2014, the Foundation has decided to double its commitment with a second truck. This allows people to have clean water to drink every day, to be used for cooking and take care of their hygiene. Thanks to the distribution of water, the spread of diseases and epidemics related to poor hygiene can be much reduced. Providing access to drinking water will also reduce the risks of dehydration, especially in infants and in the elderly.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation on this project supports:
- distribution with a 6 wheels tank truck of drinking water in the slums, 6 days a week, three times a day;
- distribution with a 10 wheels tank truck of drinking water in the slums, 6 days a week to three times a day;
- the annual costs for the maintenance of the two trucks;
- water and fuel purchase;
- salaries of employees
HIV Program – St.Damien Pediatric Hospital;
The Foundation since January 2015 supports the hospital's HIV program and helps to grow its impact on the population.
The program began in 2005, when the hospital joined the PEPFAR network as one of three pilot centers chosen to expand the treatment of children exposed to and infected with HIV.
The program has grown steadily also because the low efficiency of HIV prevention from mother to child in the country. In October 2011, the program has been strengthened and now its supports infants exposed / infected by the virus contracted by pregnant women. To the present date, the program managed to assist 550 children and adolescents treated with inhibitors and 70 patients in programs of prevention from mother to child. The program also offers full assistance, taking into account the burden that HIV / AIDS brings to families. The service is in the hospital, however a 40 people staff is dedicated specifically to this Program.
The project is supported by the Foundation thanks to a fruitful collaboration with AMFAR and the Center for Disease Control and the US.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation on this project supports:
- Employees and continuing education
- Work equipment purchase
- department supplies
- purchase medicines
- generalized test run
- home care for 800 patients
- Contribution to families to ensure continuity of treatment
- Foods to ensure nutrition to children affected by HIV and for their families
- EDU PROJET
After reaching the objective of stabilization in the number of students and the recognition of the school as a community landmark, the Foundation decided to convert the basic structures of the three schools in appropriate facilities to accommodate students and put them in the best possible condition to live the school experience. At the same time, the Foundation has involved the parents of the students by offering the majority of them work in the construction of new facilities.
Since 2013, the Foundation adopted the schools of St. Philomene, Notre Dame du Rosaire and St. Augustin providing continuity to the structures with Wheat project to cover the salaries and insurance costs. Thanks to this the number of students has stabilized and the community has recognized the school a reference benchmark. This allowed the conversion of "street schools" into real schools.
La Andrea Bocelli Foundation con EDU Project ha realizzato:
costruzione della Scuola St Philomene in Kenscoff;
costruzione della Scuola St. Augustin in Abricot;
acquisto del terreno e costruzione della Scuola Notre Dame du Rosaire in Croix des Bouquets
EDU PROJECT next actions:
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation with a new step of EDU Project will create the new structure of the school of St. Raphael, providing adequate and functional spaces.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation with a new step of EDU project will acquire an appropriate area to implement the structure of the new Manitane Dame Marie school, Jeremie.
- PROGETTO 3.COM
The goal of the project is the construction of a village for the community, where all can enjoy a decent life.
The first action of the project is to transform the schools built with EDU in a real meeting place of the community with electricity, drinking water and internet connection.
The second action concerns the possibility for all the families of the students to take advantage of the light through the distribution of solar lamps to study beyond dusk and lengthen the day of family life.
The third activity concerns in three areas of agricultural implementation so that it can become a source of income for the community.
The fourth action will seek to give decent housing to families of the poorest students of the community, through construction work or housing renovation.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation on this project will support:
- wells and / or water tanks and filtration systems capable of providing drinking water to 10,000 people per day
- solar panels for the production of electrical energy and light during the night to strengthen the school as a secure the center of the community
- 2 solar lights for the 800 families of students to allow the possibility of learning at home during the dark hours
- fertilizer supplies to households and improvement, through training, of their ability to cultivate, with the aim of increasing their income and resources
- emergency grant of US $ 500 for each family of students in our three schools for the renovation of their homes and to allow them a decent standard of living
- labs computer with internet connection.
SHOWERS FROM HOMELESS IN PIAZZA S. PIETRO
The Foundation contributed to the creation of facilities for personal daily hygiene situated at the loggia of Piazza St. Peter in Rome and made available to the homeless in the city free of charge 7 days out of 7.
Both showers, baths and barber service are carried out by volunteers from various non-profit organizations.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation on this project has supported the making of the facilities for homeless under the colonnade of St. Peter and in several parish churches of Rome
Andrea Bocelli Foundation, thanks to the relationship with UNHCR (UN Refugee Agency), has decided to support the purchase of basic necessities (like cloths and blankets) in refugee camps housing millions of Iraqi refugees through press releases inviting individuals and organizations to do the same.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation on this project has supported:
158 supply of tanks to transport clean water
316 thermal blankets for distribution to refugees
- EMERGENCY SIRIA
The Foundation, thanks to the relationship with UNHCR (UN Refugee Agency), has decided to support the purchase of basic necessities in refugee camps housing millions of Syrian refugees forced to leave their homes and their lives because of the situation prevailing in their country, calling through press joint, and even private organization to do the same.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation on this project has supported the purchase of essential items useful to refugee families such as blankets and clothing.
PROGETTO LA LUCCIOLA ONLUS
The 2012 earthquake in Emilia Romagna made unusable the building where the Rehabilitation Center ran the Integrated Therapy activities for Children.
"The Firefly" is a rehabilitation center that welcomes children and teenagers in the age group 3-18 years old with physical and mental difficulties: cerebral palsy, neurological disorders, Down syndrome and other genetic syndromes, mental retardation, autism spectrum disorders, learning and social development disorders.
The Foundation together with Francesca Rava Foundation has contributed to the construction of three cabins which made it possible to quickly restart the activities of the rehabilitation center.
The Foundation has chosen to support for one year (June 2012 - June 2013) the work of the neonatology department of the Children's Hospital Saint Damien in Tabarre, dealing with the professional development of internal staff, totally Haitian, in the attempt to create a specialized staff, making the department gradually self-sustainable.
In addition to this, the Foundation has contributed to the emergency room of the maternity ward.
Neonatology is where premature babies (which often are born weighing less than 1500 g., or with birth defects, often born by malnourished mothers) are taken care of. The department has 32 beds in intensive and sub-intensive care and is affiliated with the Bambin Gesù Hospital in Rome.
The Andrea Bocelli Foundation on this project has supported:
- support training of personnel from the neonatology
- purchase equipment for equipping new operating room.
M.I.T. FIFTH SENSE
The idea is to develop systems that allow the safe navigation, namely ensuring the blind person to walk autonomously avoiding obstacles. The blind person with the aid of a wearable system can receive the information by means of vibrations which inform of the presence of obstacles.
ABF is working with the multidisciplinary team of researchers and scientists of M.I.T. (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) who have identified two particular thematic areas of focus for the development of an assistive technology for blind users: safe navigation and the user interface.
Lettera del Fondatore Andrea Bocelli
non è semplice affrontare un argomento intimo, privato, quale è il far del bene. Aiutare il prossimo è un privilegio che ciascuno dovrebbe esercitare con discrezione e pudore, secondo le proprie possibilità. Così ho fatto sino ad oggi, nella vertigine d’essere una goccia nel mare ma anche nella certezza di avere il dovere morale d’adoprarmi per il benessere dei meno fortunati.
L’esperienza mi ha insegnato che se trasmettiamo generosità e se condividiamo la felicità e la bontà che è in noi, tutto ci tornerà moltiplicato: «nel regno dell’amore – ha scritto un teologo irlandese – non c’è competizione, non c’è possessività né controllo: quanto più amore doneremo, tanto più amore avremo».
Anch’io, da ragazzo, ho chiesto aiuto, anch’io ho conosciuto la condizione del bisogno, ho cercato un sostegno, un soccorso da parte del prossimo. In seguito ho avuto la possibilità, o per meglio dire la gioia, di contraccambiare: un desiderio in crescendo che è divenuto responsabilità, priorità inderogabile, imperativo etico.
L’anima ha bisogno d’amore proprio come il corpo ha bisogno di aria. L’amore, ce lo insegna Dante, è il ritmo segreto dell’universo (e «move il sole e l’altre stelle»): non appena ne scorgiamo la scintilla, è essenziale offrirne il calore, come una benedizione, a chi è affamato, confinato in carcere o negli ospedali, prigioniero delle difficoltà.
Ho cercato, negli anni, di rendermi utile come e per quanto ho potuto. Maturando però sempre più la convinzione che non fosse abbastanza. Per questo ho deciso di mettere in gioco tutto me stesso, rinunciando a quel pudore che la beneficienza usualmente richiede, per questo ho realizzato una Fondazione: per unire le forze, per far sì che la mia non sia più “una goccia nel mare”, ma si unisca a tante – come ci insegna Madre Teresa – al punto da riempire un oceano.
Agli amici, a coloro che per ragioni artistiche o professionali hanno avuto modo di conoscere (e, spero, di apprezzare) la mia attività canora e l’onestà intellettuale che ne ha scandito il percorso, chiedo un sostegno concreto. Chiedo di unirsi a me, per contrastare la povertà nei Paesi in via di sviluppo e per accogliere sfide importanti in ambito sociale e di ricerca scientifica.
La Andrea Bocelli Foundation porta il mio nome: non è un frivolo esercizio di vanità, è piuttosto il suggello di un patto, d’una inequivocabile assunzione di responsabilità. M’impegno infatti, in prima persona, a supervisionare e garantire la qualità e la trasparenza di ogni passaggio di ogni progetto.
Per lavoro mi dedico alla mia più grande passione, la musica: la vita a conti fatti è stata assai generosa, nella professione come negli affetti (e non posso esimermi dallo sdebitarmi). Ciò che in molti suppongono sia il mio primo problema, viceversa è l’ultimo della lista: difficile non è tanto inventarsi un volto o un tramonto, quanto destreggiarsi nelle mille quotidiane contrarietà (che agiatezza economica e successo non contribuiscono certo a diminuire!), nella ferma volontà di non cedere a compromessi, di non perdere coerenza (e dunque serenità), di non inaridirmi.
Agli amici, il mio invito accorato a cedere alla tentazione dell’amore, contribuendo e sostenendo la Fondazione. Quando amiamo e permettiamo di essere amati, la paura si muta in coraggio, il vuoto diventa pienezza, perché – ce lo ricorda San Paolo – «l’amore è paziente, l’amore è benigno; non è invidioso l’amore, non si vanta (…) Tutto copre, tutto crede, tutto spera, tutto sopporta».
Se avete ancora dei dubbi, provate a chiudere gli occhi. Riuscirete a guardare lontano, a riflettere senza distrazioni, nell’intimità della vostra coscienza, su cosa siamo e su ciò che di eterno accade nel segreto di ogni esistenza. Sono certo che poi concorderete con questa mia modesta riflessione, che ha generato il progetto della Fondazione e che ne è lo slogan:
È per fede nell’amore e nella giustizia che siamo chiamati a costruire un mondo migliore di quello che abbiamo trovato, chiamati a restituire al mondo ciò che di buono abbiamo avuto, affinché anche le persone più sfortunate o più deboli abbiamo la possibilità di una vita piena di opportunità e di bellezza, e affinché chi merita possa trovare energia e occ
LETTER FROM ANDREA BOCELLI
Talking about a private and intimate subject, like helping others, is not easy. Helping fellow human beings is a privilege that each one of us should use with discretion and modesty, according to his or her own possibilities.
This is what I did until now, realizing that my actions were a drop of water in the sea but with the certainty of having a moral duty to do all I could for the well-being of people less blessed than I. Experience taught me that if we pass on generosity, if we share the happiness and the goodness that is in each one of us, we will get it all back, and multiplied. “In the kingdom of love – an Irish theologist wrote – there is no competition, no possessiveness, no control: the more love we give the more we receive.
When I was a boy I asked for help too, I knew the condition of being in need too, I looked for support, for assistance from my close friends and family. After that, I had the chance, or better the joy, to be able to give back: a growing desire to help, becoming a responsibility, a binding priority, and an ethical duty.
The soul needs love as much as the body needs air. Love, as Dante teaches us, is the hidden rhythm of the universe (and “moves the sun and the other stars”): as soon as we see the sparkle of love, it is essential to offer its warmth, like a blessing, to those who are hungry, confined to a or in need, prisoners of hardship. Over the years, I tried to make myself useful in the best ways I could. But I had the feeling that it was not enough.
That’s why I decided to commit fully in this venture, giving up the privacy that charitable deeds usually demand.
That is why I created a foundation to put all our strengths together, to make sure that my actions are not “a drop in the sea” but unite with all other drops – as Mother Theresa teaches us – to become an Ocean. To my friends, to those who for artistic or professional reasons had the opportunity to know – and hopefully to appreciate – my work as a singer and the intellectual integrity throughout my career, I ask for a tangible support. I ask you to join me in the battle against poverty in developing countries, I ask you to respond to significant challenges in the social field and scientific research.
The A.B.F. bears my name: it is not a sign of vanity; it is a way to write in stone a commitment, and taking on a responsibility. I commit myself to monitor and to guarantee the quality and transparency of each phase of each project. Professionally, I am dedicated to my biggest passion, music. Life, after all, has been very generous with me in my professional career as well as in my private life, and I have to give back to others. What many people think is my first problem in life, is actually the last on my list; the challenge is not to invent a face or a sunset, but to find a way amongst hundreds of daily difficulties (that money and success don’t help diminish) with a strong will not to give in to compromise, not to lose coherence (and the serenity that goes with it), and not to lose myself. I invite all my friends to give in to the temptation of love, contributing and supporting the Foundation. When one loves, and when we let ourselves be loved, the fear becomes boldness and the emptiness becomes fulfillment; as Saint Paul reminds us: “love is patient, love is good; it does not envy, it does not boast (…) Love always protects, it always trusts, it always hopes, it always perseveres.”
If you are still in doubt, try to close your eyes. You will be able to look far, to think without distraction in the intimacy of your conscience about what we are and what is the eternal aspect in the secret of each of our existences. I am sure you will then agree with my modest thought that sparked the project of the foundation and that has become its mission: Our faith in love and justice calls upon us to build a better world than the one we found; it calls upon us to give back to the community all the good things that we have received, so that the less fortunate or the most vulnerable members of our society will have a chance to achieve a life full of opportunities and beauty, so that those who take up the challenge will find the energy and the real possibilities to thrive in their lives.