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The Dubois foundation 1st 2013 container

The Dubois Charitable foundation ( http://www.duboischaritablefoundation.com/ )
has received permission for a container to Cuba. This will be container # 65 (I think) that they have sent to the Island. It is a well structured charitable group that focus on areas of need, from hurricane relief, to hospitals, orphanages, homes for the aged. It is non religious and done with the care and goodness of a dedicated core and many volunteers.

… “This container will be going to the province of Mayabeque, which is located between the city of Havana and and the city of Matanzas and goes from the Atlantic coast to the Caribean sea. It is a poor province who’s economy is mostly agricultural.The main cities( all of them, small) in the province are San Jose de las Lajas (the capital), San Nicolas, Santa Cruz del norte, Bejucal, Guines, and Madruga.”

Do you have a date for packing yet? Love to help if the date is open.

My understanding is June 1st…but that can always change depending on circumstances

Great people doing wonderful work getting donations to those that need them.
Donate if you can. Help load a container if that is possible. Show your support by saying “thank you”.

Count me in ! (right after another local spca donation, they’re on a roll lol ;D)
Thanks for the head’s up :smiley:

Hey Canucks, how come the website has no update on this??
I’m verklempt at the lack of new info here…
I’ve contacted them by mail.

WELL … I guess when there is just so much time… something slips and the website is the area. They did either 3 or 4 containers around Nov/ Dec 2012 and they never listed that great work. The email does out to a few of us that are regulars and then there are a couple of us that post.

John & Marian have limited space for loading time so they do want to limit the number of people physically there for the loading. …but they can always use donations. The $ that comes in they use to fill the demands where the other (physical) donations are low. For example…they might have hospital beds but have no pillows so they could possibly use the $ to buy some pillows, or pillow cases.

they do answer their emails.

Yes they DO answer their e-mails. Got a very quick and cheery reply from the DF administrator who c.c.'d their webmaster, a Mr. Ohara, so info should be updated shortly.
Donation on its way!
Zendudita Salsa Mama

Have to admit that at last packing, my wife and I left early as there were plenty of people helping. You can only have so many and after that, it gets unsafe when there’s too many.

It would be nice to have a sign-up list with X number of slots for the number of people needed.

It was really nice to meet other members of this forum. Great stories and many do a significant amount of aid to Cuba in addition to the Dubois Foundation work.

John & Marian usually keep a list. They are rather organized, …but there is always drop-outs and drop-ins.

Unfortunately, the last time we were there (2 years ago) there were too many people. When you are coming from Ottawa it’s important to know when they have enough volunteers, especially when it involves a stay at a hotel for us.

In that case, cubamiga, I hope you’ve voiced your concerns directly to the DF.

Again…do not just show up Let the foundation (John & Marian) know that you are interested in attending. They will let you know the status . What happens is a lot is done in advance of the day. There is a remarkably dedicated group that meet (I believe) weekly to do prepacking. So the day of the container packing is pulling all these boxes/bags out and packing it within the chairs & furniture & beds. So while hands are needed there is a huge amount of work done pre day.

I too am from Ottawa and have a decent-sized load of stuff to bring down. I sent John an email on Monday with some questions but have yet to geta reply. So, I will try asking the questions here - and maybe someone will know the answers.

How much in advance can we bring stuff down?

I am not sure which day of the week we would come. Would we be able to bring it on a weekday (Friday perhaps) during the day?

How do you prefer that we bring it - for example is clothing OK in garbage bags or do you prefer boxes? and if we bring linens, do you want them in separate containers or is OK to mix it with clothing?

What about suitcases (older style, but still in good shape)? Would it be useful to pack clothing items in them? then suitcases and all could go?

Has anyone brought down items crocheted from milk bags? Either mats or tote-bags? See these sites for details: http://recyclemilkbags.pbworks.com/w/page/26969816/HomePage and http://www.canadianliving.com/crafts/crochet/plastic_bag_craft_two_crocheted_tote_bags.php Any idea if the totebags would be useful?

And one last question - I will bring down at least one bike - a traditional mountain bike. But what about one of those 10 or 12 speeds with the handlebars that circle down and around - with skinnier tires than a mountain bike. Would that be OK as well?

Thanks to anyone who can answer at least some of my questions. Otherwise, I will wait for a response from John… but I will need to book somewhere to stay soon, with the two long weekends coming up (here and in the US)

Really important that you get it from John. Reason…is he (and Marian) are the people who are organizing the container and therefore know what is needed. I could comment on most of this but the Dubois are really the best source for good information.

It is wonderful that you are doing this! One year after Ike I called a number of large hotels in are area and asked for clean, good condition but not suitable for client sheets and blankets. It just so happened one Weston/Best Western just had a major change over of linens and blankets. I needed a pick-up to take all the sheets down…but I asked John 1st and after a hurricane it was a welcome addition to the pack.

If you are packing clothing or linens they MUST be clean, no stains. Place in see through bag surrounded by a 2nd green garbage bag and an inventory sheet attached. (14 pants, 10 shirts, men’s clothing … as an example). The items need to be inventoried for the container…and they do count and check at the other end and all must be on the up & up. Absolutely no religious material can be included. (Cuban rules)

Canuck - good things to know and I will be patient and wait for a response from John. It’s good to know about the inventory sheets though. For me, no religious items is not a problem! In fact, that’s a big part of my attraction to this organization.

wenott… sent you a pm


I am sure it was just an oversight. Everyone works very hard, especially John and Marion. A sign in list would be great so they can tell those of us that are travelling a distance that they have enough locals and no longer need us.

Hi Folks; I don’t wade into these discussions on Dubois Charitable Foundation very often but I think maybe a word on explanation would be in order. I live with the process of preparing for a container for weeks ahead of time. Finding a date when we, our hardcore volunteers and the regulars are available, this is quite often done with sampling email. Then there is quite often a posting, then John sends out a group email to people who have assisted at packings before. When he has almost enough help he then sends out a follow-up email to tell people we have enough help, he thanks all for their efforts and says to those who haven’t replied;"we will see you next time. " Then he mades lists that are constantly revised to find the best way to use the people on his list. The people who have been to loadings know that we depend on people who come to the loadings not only to fill the container but to pack clothes, etc. for the next container. Six of us working every Wednesday morning can’t pack and tag enough bags to go on the containers. The situation for the past two containers was even more difficult because we were working with unfamiliar circumstances. I assure you John works as hard as possible to make sure that we use all of your talents the best way possible. Thank you for understanding

This dedicated group are amazing… I have seen the fruits of there efforts on each of the packs I have been fortunate to attend. I only wish Woodstock was closer.