We wanted to send a quick hello and happy holidays from all of us at the Carolyn A. Miller School in Liberia. We now have a total enrollment of 550 students and 24 teachers and staff. We could not operate our school with out your kind donations given through GlobalGiving. Although, we continue to struggle with prioritizing where much needed funds should be dispersed ie... teacher salaries, repair for equipment and school furniture, supplies, etc... days like October 15th keep our spirits high. On this day, 12 students met the requirement of the Carolyn A. Miller School and Ministry of Education for graduation and passed the West African examination and were granted graduation certificates. We are so proud of all of our students including, Mamuna Kamara, who placed first amongst her classmates.
We are also very grateful to be receiving 50 computers donated from the US this December. Our kids are excited and will benefit greatly from this contribution.
With each month, we grow closer to our fundraising goal and hope you'll continue to support and share our project. In consideration of your holiday shopping, GlobalGiving allows for donations to be given in someone's honor. We think this is a great way to give and give back this season.
Karrus Hayes & the Carolyn A. Miller School
We have had a successful year of school through the efforts of globalgiving and all of the kind donors and friends of CAMES. There are over 400 students who benefited from the Vision Awake Africa For Development free education program for the 2009/2010 academic school year. This program has made a significant impact on the lives for the returning refugees, the less privileged, and the war effected children in the community.
+ almost $8,000 in teacher's salaries owed for the school year were paid
+ 13 students sat for the standardized West Africa Examination for 9th-12th grade graduations
+ 34 students wrote the 9th grade examination and qualified for High School
+ 32 students wrote the 6th grade examination and qualified for Junior High School
An interview was conducted with a beneficiary student of VAAFD's free educational program in Ghana. Her name is Mimi. She returned to Liberia in 2008 and is now a 10th grade student. According to her, upon her return to Liberia, there were no means for her to return to school. She was able to locate the Carolyn A. Miller School branch in Liberia and today, is looking forward to her promotion to 10th grade and happy to be getting back into school. She said that “My father Mr. Mulbah is in a Wheelchair and has no job to support me to support my education. And, my mother is also not empower to get a job to support my education as well and I have a strong desire for education because when one is educated it makes them independence and you are able to contribute to others who are in need.” “ I want to thank VAAFD and all those who have been touched to support our education even though they don’t know us but they still keep their commitment."
We are very excited for the new year. We have hundreds of refugees, like Mimi, returning to Liberia who were already benefiting from Vision Awake Africa For Development's free educational program in Ghana. Through the presence of our school in Liberia, they now have the hope of acquiring their educational goal.
We want to thank all of our donors and supporters for their continued support, contributions and commitment to this project. We could never be effective without your support and donations. Because of you, we had a successful school year for 2009/2010. You are so important to the future of the less fortunate and war affected children of Liberia and for this we thank you! We consider education the highest gift one can ever give. It gives us independence, resources in our community, country and world that we so deeply need.
We are starting the 2010/2011 academic school year on Monday, September 6th. Our school is lead by selfless teachers who give back to our students each and every day. Help us support our teachers by giving an ongoing monthly donation of $20, $30 or $60 (full month's salary). With enough ongoing donors, we can ensure that our teachers are compensated fully in a timely manner. The wondrous tools globalgiving provides donors allows us to receive your donations on an ongoing monthly basis.
Thank you once again! We hope you will follow us and continue to support our projects. The Carolyn Miller School providing free education and gives less privileged children hope for their future.
and the staff/students of The Carolyn A. Miller School in Liberia
Dear Friends, Donors and former Volunteers of CAMES,
Greetings from the CAMES family in Liberia. We think it is very important to extend our greetings and appreciation to you all. CAMES has been able to survive over the years because of your kind hearts toward the deprived children of Liberia and the great contribution you have made over the years. In fact, there could be no free school for the
kids if you had not shown your love and kindness to them by contributing and even coming to work as well. Right now the only means of CAMES survival in Liberia is a donation that is done through GlobalGiving. To have the school information be hosted on the GlobalGiving website, you made it happen. Your donation to the initial challenge helped VAAFD to win in Liberia.
Unfortunately, it has been hard for the survival of the school in Liberia. We currently owe our wonderful teachers
for six months of salaries. The amount allocated per month is $1,440.00. It has been difficult to raise said amount but with all that, our staffs are very much committed to their work. We are in dire need of raising the owed $8,640 and figuring out a way to sustain teacher's salaries in the future.
You can help us in a big way on June 16! GlobalGiving is having a Bonus Day on June 16 at GlobalGiving.org. They are matching at 50% all online donations up to $1,000 per donor per project! In addition to the 50% match, GlobalGiving is offering a $1,000 bonus to the project that raises the most funds that day and a $1,000 bonus to the project that receives donations from the most individual donors!
We ask for your help again to enable us to compensate our teacher's for their past six months of great work. I know we are a good team that never fails. We can make it, we make the difference! If we were successful in the refugee camp, how about Liberia? Please lets work together for the deprived in our society.
I am greatly hoping on you and I know we will make it together.
Kindly visit our link on June 16th and donate in any way that you can!
UK and Europe: www.globalgiving.co.uk/pr/3700/proj3644d.html
(donations made on www.globalgiving.co.uk are NOT eligible for matching)
Karrus Hayes, the founder of VAAFD met me on the way to visit the Carolyn A. Miller School. He had traveled to Monrovia from where he currently lives, about three hours outside the city. On our taxi ride to the school, Karrus told me a little about his life and his motivation for starting this organization. He told me about how he had escaped Liberia’s war and traveled to Ghana by boat. As he grew up in the Ghanaian refugee camp he noticed children idling and playing games in the street during the hours that school was in session. When he asked them why they weren’t in school they replied that their parents could not afford the school fees that were required. This inspired Karrus to start the first Carolyn A. Miller School for the Liberian refugees in the camp where he lived in Ghana. The school is completely free to students and has been running successfully for several years.
After Karrus returned to Liberia, he noticed the same problem happening in Monrovia, Liberia’s capital. Refugees that were returning to Liberia were not able to afford the school fees and many children were not attending classes. He set up another Carolyn A. Miller School in Liberia targeting the growing stream of returnees from Ghana.
This school, also free, currently has about 450 students between the ages for 4 and 29. They teach kindergarten through 12th grade, and about half of their students are former refugees returned from Ghana.
As we approached the school, children of all ages dressed in orange and black streamed down the road. School had just ended and the students were happily heading home. I met with the principal and many of the students and they showed me the classrooms. Broken chairs and tables lay around the room. They are being used, but many of the students must sit on the floor during their lessons. But there is no money for new desks, so the students make due.
Karrus explained that raising funds for the school in Liberia has proven to be a much more difficult task than raising funds in Ghana. In Ghana the school gets visitors from the US and other countries regularly, who provide volunteer support and donations. This is not the case in Liberia, which does not yet attract the type of tourism that Ghana does. GlobalGiving is currently the school in Liberia’s only means of support, but these donations do not always cover the monthly budget it takes to run the school.
Currently the school operates on a budget of about $1700 a month - $1440 goes towards teachers’ salaries, $225 toward rental of the building, and the rest towards food for the free daily meal that the school provides to every student each day. Currently they are several months behind on teachers’ salaries and the teachers are threatening to not give the students their final exam.
The principal is looking for creative ways to make the school sustainable – selling crafts or agricultural production are possibilities they’ve suggested – so that they can continue to provide education free of charge to repatriated Liberians. Until then, they will continue to rely on their GlobalGiving donations. A donor can cover an entire teacher’s salary for only $40 a month. After talking with the teachers and staff, I see the real benefit Karrus and the school are providing to these students, so I am setting up a monthly recurring donation on GlobalGiving to help the school continue their work.
As an added incentive to support this school, on June 16 GlobalGiving is matching all donations up to $1,000 per person at 50%!
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1001 Monrovia 10,
1001 Monrovia 10,