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Forging New Tomorrows

Cheryl Williams
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, USA
Member of FNT International Board of Directors,
Forging New Tomorrows, Inc. Atlanta, USA

Forging New Tomorrows (FNT) is a non-profit, non governmental organization dedicated to promoting education, health and environmental protection in developing countries and is formally recognized by, amongst others, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Founded in early 1994, this Atlanta based organization was initially created in order to implement a Post War Rehabilitation & Development Program (PWRDP) for the Ministry of Health of Rwanda and the Rwanda Office of Tourism and National Parks (ORTPN). FNT is currently and operates as an international NGO with delegations in North America, Europe and Africa, including Benin, Madagascar, Rwanda, Senegal, and Uganda. Together with its delegates and in strategic alliance with academic and international institutions and experts in research, education, public health and development, FNT has undertaken a variety of projects in the fields of health research and promotion, conservation and environmental protection, humanitarian relief, education and technology transfer.

Currently, FNT is preparing for publication of a book entitled Selected Health Systems of Africa (SHSofA) endorsed by Emory University Institute of African Studies, to provide an interdisciplinary approach to understanding existing health systems in Africa.

An exciting new day dawned for Georgia, the nation and the world on May 6, 2002 when FNT inaugurated the DeKalb International Training Center (DITC). The seemingly unlikely dream of a place where people from war-torn nations and developing nations can find peace, reconciliation, understanding, education, cultural exchange and training to compete for Olympic glory has been realized. Enter the DeKalb International Training Center (DITC), located on 100 acres of beautifully wooded land in DeKalb County, Georgia-- the DITC is a place where elite athletes from around the world can prepare for the 2004 Olympic games in Greece, the 2008 games in China, and beyond.

The publication of Majii and the Mountain Gorillas of Rwanda is source of great pride to us at FNT. This project represents the outcome of a unique educational and creative collaboration between Marc-Daniel Gutekunst and Stan Mullins (two founding members of FNT), the Dian Dossey Gorilla Fund International (DFGFI), deeply committed educators, passionate parents and, most importantly, several hundred inspired and inspiring elementary and high school students. We hope that the involvement of the children in the making of the book, educating them about the gorillas, their natural habitat and their interaction with people, as well as providing them with creative means of, individually and collectively, making a difference, shall inspire others to use the professional and personal concerns of parents and local institutions to complement the public school curriculum in its endeavor to introduce children to a diverse, complex and exciting world beyond the classroom.

Proceeds from the sale of the book will be donated to the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fun International to provide scholarships to Rwandan students committed to the conservation of wildlife in Rwanda.