Volunteer Impact: Ana Kraft

Ana Kraft, Project chair

Anastasia Kraft is from Germany and has a background in mechanical engineering and project management. She speaks four languages and is an adventure-seeker who runs a local sustainability meetup group in her spare time. As FMFM's volunteer project chair, Ana helps FMFM analyze and assess the sustainability, materials and logistics behind the projects we're working on. We interviewed Ana to find out more about why she's connected with FMFM. 

Once I found out how many children around the world have to spend many hours every day carrying water for very long distances to cover their basic needs, I wanted to help solve this problem and make it possible for children to spend more time in school preparing for their future.
— Ana Kraft, Projects Chair, FMFM

Tell us how you first got involved with FMFM?

I moved to Milwaukee from Germany two years ago. While I was going through the work permit application process which takes several months, I wanted to do something useful with my free time and started exploring different volunteering opportunities. The main requirement for me was that my work would have a positive long term impact in someone’s life. I was introduced to Sarah Fracek, who is the current Communications Chair, and after an informal lunch meeting with her and Maria Groves (the founder of FMFM), I was part of the team!

What was your first impression of FMFM?

My first impression was great! I met a group of highly motivated and successful women who were working in their very limited free time on projects which had a significant impact in many African communities. I was very excited to join the group and help!

What has impacted you most about working with FMFM?

I have learned more about the issues of water scarcity and water quality in African communities. We take water for granted while making our coffee in the morning, taking a daily shower, pushing the start button on the washing machine or cooking dinner.  Once I found out how many children around the world have to spend many hours every day carrying water for very long distances to cover their basic needs, I wanted to help solve this problem and make it possible for children to spend more time in school preparing for their future.  

Tell me about an "AHA moment" you have experienced while working with FMFM?  

We started a partnership with another non-profit organization called “Strides for Africa” which is based in Madison and is doing a fantastic job working with schools in the US to fund wells in African countries. The “AHA moment” came when I realized how smart it is to get high-school and college students involved who have a lot of energy and great ideas to help students in another country! This is what we currently try to take off the ground.

Where do you see FMFM in the future?

I see FMFM running five international projects every year providing sustainable long term solutions for water and  food supply in the first place and develop community leaders through education who will continue this work in neighboring communities.  

What would you tell someone who is thinking about volunteering with FMFM?

What I love about FMFM is that all of our work is volunteering based and that one can see the direct impact of our work and the donations we collect. To be a volunteer at FMFM is fun and rewarding!

What do you like to do outside of FMFM?

I love to play volleyball at Bradford beach with my husband, go hiking and traveling to new adventurous countries. Because I am very passionate about the topic of sustainability, I organize educational events for the Milwaukee community related to renewable energies, food production, water, waste management and transportation. The group “Milwaukee Talks Green” can be found on Facebook and on Meetup.com.