The last two weeks have been spent making contacts with people and trying to fundraise. I have spoken at two Rotary clubs, the Fallbrook Rotary and the Fallbrook Village Rotary. I will also be speaking at the Bonsall Rotary this upcoming week. Speaking at each Rotary has been different thus far. The Fallbrook Rotary only gave me five minutes to speak while the Fallbrook Village Rotary gave me 20-25 minutes as the guest speaker. Both Rotary's were nice enough to let me raise awareness of the Afghanistan Water Polo program. At the Fallbrook Village Rotary, we could not get the projector to work. I had to give the presentation with no slides. Fortunately, since I know the presentation pretty well, I did not make myself look too much like a fool. I luckily had some posters of the team to pass around as well. They were so nice and attentive, even though I had no slides (What did we do before projectors?!?).
I also FINALLY received my appointment letter from the Swim Chair at the Afghanistan National Olympic Committee. It says that I am the coach of the Afghanistan National Water Polo Team. It was something I have been waiting to receive since September of last year. I was promised it nearly bi-weekly and just never received it. I am glad that everyone that was waiting for it from me was so patient and never doubted that I would get it.
We also received our favorable 501(c)(3) letter from the Internal Revenue Service as well. That is another task that is now complete for bringing the team to the United States. This process started by sending in our forms to the IRS in August 2008 for the non-profit we created, The Dream of Afghanistan Athletics, to be the support arm to help the Afghanistan National Water Polo Team follow the Olympic dream. Naturally, we received this letter after everyone’s personal taxes were due. So now we have to notify everyone who has donated so far that their donations are tax deductable since August of last year. I wonder how many of our donors will have to redo their taxes because of this? I hope not too many. I also have to add that us receiving the favorable 501(c)(3) letter was also helped along by our congressman’s office. It was amazing how it only took a phone call from them to the IRS to get it done.