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Dear Friends,

In 2014 The Maritimes Guatemala Breaking the Silence Solidarity Network will celebrate 25 years of solidarity work. Since 1989, BTS has been working with local committees and Guatemalan partners to support critical work that addresses the defense of human rights, community self-sufficiency, natural resource sustainability, Canadian corporate accountability and much more.

In 2013, our solidarity work has taken many forms:

• Supporting witnesses in genocide cases, including the Rios Montt case;

• Working behind the scenes to ensure that the landmark HudBay case will move forward in Canada;

• Organizing Maritime tours by Guatemalan and Salvadorans whose community and church organizations are resisting the GoldCorp owned Marlin and Cerro Blanco mines;

• And supporting the work of our partners in their amazing initiatives in education, land reform, perma-culture, support for women’s rights, and more.

This work could not have been done without the support and leadership of our BTS Coordinators, Jackie McVicar, Wyanne Sandler and Lisa Rankin. (Lisa is replacing Wyanne who is on maternity leave until March 2014.)

The current political climate presents many challenges for BTS and we have been forced to re-evaluate the work of the network. Although, due to federal cuts, we are unable to offer our internship program after 12 years, we persist in maintaining our presence in Guatemala and our relationships with our partners.

Since beginning our fundraising campaign in 2009, BTS has raised over $200,000 from individual and organizational donors and has been able to fund two coordinator positions. Through your generous support and commitment, whether with small or large donations, we have met our staffing fund goals over the years. In August, at our Visioning Weekend, we pledged continued commitment to raise funds to maintain both coordinator positions for another year of solidarity work with our partners.

In order to fulfill our commitments for 2014 we need close to $15,000. So we are reaching out to the BTS network, to friends, and supporters to meet our staffing fund requirements with monthly or one-time donations.

We want to assure our staff well in advance that we are able to pay them. Thus, we would appreciate receiving your donation no later than January 15th which arrive at Tatamagouche Centre by January 15th tax credits. A donation form can be accessed here.

Please make cheques payable to Tatamagouche Centre, specifying on the memo line the BTS Staffing Campaign. If you are donating online with a credit card, please note BTS Staffing Campaign in the box “Additional Comments”.

Please note the First-Time Donor’s Super Credit. First-time donors or those who have not claimed an income tax charitable donation credit in the past five years receive a 40% federal credit for donations of $200 or less, and a 54% federal credit for the portion of donations over $200 but not exceeding $1000.

Please consider what BTS means to you! The defense of human rights, holdingCanadian companies operating in Guatemala accountable, community self-sufficiency, and, perhaps most importantly, the deep relationships we have built with partners over the years. These globally transformative actions are in jeopardy without your support!

We need you to keep this work going, to keep the fire burning in these relationships. Click here to donate.

We very much hope you can join us at the AGM June 27-29th anniversary since BTS was founded and pledge to another 25 years of solidarity work.

In solidarity and resistance,

The BTS Fundraising Committee:

Kathryn Anderson, Marie Claire Brisbois, Sheena Cameron, Lia Chaisson, Janelle Frail, Marla LeBlanc, Bonnie Pero, Moira Peters, and Jackie Race