Educate a Girl, Educate a Nation - Sierra Leone

 
$20,952
$4,048
Raised
Remaining
Augusta
Augusta

Dear Project Supporters,

Because of YOU, we are so super happy to report that in the last 2 months or so, 10 girls / young ladies have received full scholarships. Thanks to your specific investment into their lives, these girls are now eagerly looking forward to restarting school - when school reopens at the end of March.  This is so amazing and we are so grateful for your support!

Meet Augusta.  Augusta is an additional young lady who has received support through your donations. Your donations have provided for all her school-related costs.   Augusta loves school and would like to be an accountant someday.  Augusta comes from a poor family background. Both parents are illiterate and are not gainfully employed. Her mother is housewife while her father works at the Quay. His income is grossly inadequate to take care of Augusta and her siblings.

In the photo, you can see Augusta holding a radio and batteries she received earlier so she could listen to the radio broadcasts by the Ministry of Education.  She is likewise eagerly looking forward to reopening of school.  YOUR support is making her education dreams come true.

The African Union Summit just ended a few weeks ago in January,  According to a Huffington Post summary: "Due to weak gender policies, lack of credible evaluation and measurement, implementation and monitoring, vaguely imported programs and the willingness to act, African governments are letting women and girls down" - Africa's Poor Policies Letting Women and Girls Down

Because of this dire situation, hundreds of girls are still at risk of dropping out of school or not attending school at all. We are determined to keep working together till every child that desires to go to school has the opportunity to do so.  No girl or child should be let down or left behind. 

Your continued support will help us provide many more girls with full scholarships - so they can attend school - fully equipped.   Thanks so much for your support!

Best Wishes,

Develop Africa team

Links:

Elizabeth
Elizabeth

As a team, we feel really good about a recent victory that we accomplished with your support.

Elizabeth lost her mother when she was eleven years of age.  Her father, a farmer, was finding it difficult to buy seeds to sustain his small scale farming business. A tribal man from Moyamba learned of his predicament and wanted to exploit the situation. He opted to help her father with some seeds.  He asked in exchange that Elizabeth later be given in marriage to him.

When Elizabeth became 12 years old, the man showed up to remind the father of their arrangement concerning Elizabeth. Joshua, our local Director, happened to be around at that time.  He reports as follows:

I saw the father looking distressed and asked, “You are not usually like this, what is the matter?” 

The father opened up and told me about the problem he was facing. “I do not have money to cover Elizabeth's fees and related school expenses".  I am already in debt.  What should I do?”

I suggested to the father that he first take Elizabeth to her Aunt Kadiatu. As an organization, we proceeded to take care of Elizabeth fees / related expenses and paid for her school uniforms and school materials.  

Elizabeth is now 14 years old and in Form 3. No more talk of marrying at 14 years old.

Elizabeth wants to be a lawyer when she grows. She likes English Language and Social Studies. She is very friendly and respectful. She cooks very well and is very hospitable to her Aunty Kadiatu. She is a good listener. 

Child marriage is still an unfortunate reality in Africa!  According to the International Center For Research on Women, up to 44% of girls in Sierra Leone get married before the age of 18!  

Thanks to your support we were able to make a huge difference in Elizabeth's life.  Our intervention enabled her to escape from the unfortunate threat of child marriage. Now she is developing herself, furthering her education and will be better able to support her family in the future. 

Together we changed the course of Elizabeth's life.  Your involvement and support made this possible.  Thanks so much.  

Today is a good day!  The world is a better place - thanks to YOU!

Elizabeth is staying in school - no child marriage
Elizabeth is staying in school - no child marriage

Links:

Hawanatu
Hawanatu

Hawanatu is a pupil of the Christ Evangelical Internal Secondary school and she wants to be a banker when she grows up. She is very clever and has won many prizes in her school in different subjects. She plans to be first in her class after exams and is currently third in her class. She enjoys running, singing, and dancing. Her favorite subjects are Mathematics and Religious Moral Education. She has two brothers and two sisters. Her duties at home are to wash dishes and fetch water. She is looking forward to learning how to cook.

Your support is helping Hawanatu, and girls like her, get the education she needs to accomplish her goal of becoming a banker. Your donations are providing her with school supplies.

Due to the Ebola crisis, all schools are currently closed in Sierra Leone - with no projected re-opening date. This could be in the next month or so.  We do not know the date for sure - but we definitely want to be prepared as families need our support - more than ever before. Business has slowed down considerably.  The economy has taken a down turn and many families in the communities that we work are struggling to survive.

During our “Stop the Spread” Ebola sensitization program held on September 4th, three hundred and sixty (360) children were reminded about the importance of staying in school and getting an education. We wanted to keep schooling current in their minds.  Thanks in part to YOUR support, one thousand, two hundred (1,200) exercise books were distributed to them.  You can watch a video where 2 kids say thank you towards the end of the video.  This starts at 1 minute 48 seconds into the video.

On Wednesday, October 15th, from 9 am EDT to 11:59 pm EDT (or until funds run out!) Global Giving will be matching donations up to $1,000 per donor at 30%! There is $75,000 available in matching!

Your donation on October 15th will help us provide even more scholarships and supplies for more girls like Hawanatu.  Thanks so much for your support as we prepare for a great school year!

exercise books distributed to kids
exercise books distributed to kids
kids happy to receive exercise books
kids happy to receive exercise books
importance of education emphasized to kids
importance of education emphasized to kids

Links:

Holstina in class
Holstina in class
Holstina is nine years old and has three sisters.  Her father Amidu is a mason / building contractor. Her mother, Winifred  is a petty trader, selling assorted food items. The family lives in a single-bedroom apartment with no running water or electricity. Sometimes, Holstina is sent to stay with relatives to ease the financial burden on her family and for her own safety, as one of her uncles is mentally ill. When this happens, Holstina misses out on much-needed parental love. 

Despite her circumstances, however, Holstina is a very promising young girl, is very friendly, and is respectful. She likes to read and is also interested in public speaking. She is in Class 5 and her favorite subject is Mathematics. Her best game is a local game called balance ball. When she grows up, Holstina would like to be a banker.

Your donations play a key role - helping to keep future Banker - Holstina in school. As UNICEF reports, Girls access to education is improving in Sierra Leone. Parity is almost observed in primary school, but retention and completion of education remain a challenge with high drop out rate for girls and low enrolment in secondary school.

Hearing news like this troubles us.  In this day and age of increasing educational opportunities, no one should be denied education because of any reason. Recently, people all around the world united in revolt against the girls captured at school in Nigeria. In a rare show of unity, we all shared photos and tweeted saying #BringBackOurGirls.  We united together because we passionately protested for the right of the girls to be free and to attend school.

What we are doing together - supporting the education of girls is vitally needed - on an ongoing basis - to ensure that girls like Holstina do not drop out of school.  Thank YOU so much for putting your voice into action by supporting this project.  You have done so much more than protest.  You have taken action and helped to ensure that Holstina and other girls stay in school.  You are making a real difference in our Educate Girls movement.  On behalf of Holstina and all the other girls that YOU have helped keep in school, we say a HUGE Thank You.

This Wednesday June 25th is Bonus Day and YOUR donation of any amount - up to $1000 - will be matched dollar for dollar by Microsoft YouthSpark, YOU can help us continue to keep promising girls like Holstina in school. 

Beginning Wednesday at NOON (EDT) until funds run out or June 26th at 11:59 AM, your donation will be DOUBLED allowing for an even bigger impact together!  Thank you helping us to secure the matching funds that will make a huge difference in the lives of our girls!  Your donation of $20.00 will provide a school uniform.

Please forward this to your friends and invite them to help us Keep Our Girls In School - #KeepOurGirlsInSchool.
Holstina listening in class
Holstina listening in class
Holstina on her way to school
Holstina on her way to school

Links:

Fatmatta and her mother -scholarship recipient
Fatmatta and her mother -scholarship recipient
According to the UN, 31 million girls of primary school age are not enrolled in school.  The included UN infographic vividly presents this stark reality and, at the same time, warmly encourages us to invest in the education of girls. 

This is the core of what we are doing together through this unique and special project - focusing on the education of girls. What we are doing is truly amazing - as we ensure that the obstacles to on-going enrollment are removed.  

Fatmatta and her mother (pictured) were facing a dire situation where her mother was not able to cover the cost of school fees and new uniforms. The situation was such that Fatmatta was about to drop out of school.  

Thanks to our timely intervention, Fatmatta's mother was able to pay her fees the next day.  The funds we provided also covered the cost of an additional uniform - to keep her neatly dressed as she goes to school.

Fatmatta and her mother were deeply touched by the support that you provided and they expressed their deep appreciation and gratitude.  

As you may know, March 8th was International Women's day. Each year, on this global day, we celebrate the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future. We celebrate women's success and are reminded of inequities that need to be redressed. 

Through this project, you are helping to address the education inequities for womenYour support is furthering the education of girls like Fatmatta and preparing them for a great future.  Thanks to your support she is able to continue her schooling.  

You can see a visual of the impact that we are together making in the included UNICEF infographic.  As the graphic illustrates, the impact of educating girls is far-reaching!  

YOU can help us continue to prepare these budding women by making a donation today.  Your donation of $35 today will provide a pair of uniforms and a set of shoes.  Please help us bring a smile to a girl child today.  Thanks so much for your support!

Fatmatta and mother
Fatmatta and mother
invest in girls
invest in girls

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Organization

Develop Africa, Inc.

Johnson City, Tennessee, United States
http://www.developafrica.org

Project Leader

Sylvester Renner

Founder
Johnson City, Tennessee United States

Where is this project located?

Map of Educate a Girl, Educate a Nation - Sierra Leone