Sep 16, 2019

Project Education South Sudan Update Sept 17, 2019

Photo of Aluel
Photo of Aluel

During the past four years, 50 PESS supported students have graduated high school and passed their national exams, required to officially graduate and become eligible for university. These bright young girls, full of hopes and dreams, aspire to contribute to their community and their country. They inspire us and are the reason that we exist. Let me tell you about a couple of these students. 

ALUEL 

Aluel finished her studies at the end of 2018. In January of this year, she took the national exam required of all 12th graders and received the results in August. Aluel learned that she not only passed, but that she received the 4th highest score in the whole of South Sudan. What an achievement! 

Aluel went to primary school in the village of Konbeek, where she attended a school that PESS built about 10 years ago.  She and her family had to flee her home village during civil unrest in 2013. They made their way to Bortown, about 40 miles away, where the family was able to settle into safety. Aluel became a PESS scholar, continuing her education with regular support from the PESS staff. She has obviously taken advantage of the opportunities she received and has been quite successful. Keep up the good work, Aluel -- we can't wait to see what you do next! 

AYOM 

Ayom knows leadership! She is proud of her roles as a class monitor and Assistant Head Girl of her school. She takes her job seriously and is proud to “use her power fairly”, applying equal treatment to boys and girls alike. 

Ayom dreams of becoming a doctor because she wants to improve the state of vulnerable women in her community. When asked what social issue is most important to her, she responds, "in fact, I care about gender-based violence and issues like forced marriage and early marriage because those issues unfairly concern young girls. Justice to girls in the society or community should be improved by all means." Ayom is passionate about Women's Equality. 

PESS organizes students into groups of 10 students. This gives girls support from their peers and offers them the opportunity to study and wrestle with global issues with other students and allows them to practice their communication and writing skills. Ayom’s group named themselves “The Future of Societies”. 

THANKS! 

Project Education South Sudan is honored to support brave and dedicated girls like Aluel and Ayom in achieving their educational aspirations! When you support PESS, you support these and other young women in accessing education and ultimately making the world a better place.

Thank you for being a partner with us!

The Future of Societies
The Future of Societies
Jun 20, 2019

Project Education South Sudan Update June 20, 2019

Girls are graduating from high school. This year more than 20 of the girls that PESS supports graduated and took their national exams to demonstrate their achievement. What happens to the girls after they graduate? This presents a challenge. Most of the girls who receive scholarship and program support from PESS have high aspirations for their personal lives. They want to be doctors, lawyers, scientists, pilots and community leaders. At least two thirds of them long to go to university, and to study to achieve one of these goals. However, most have been unable to find the funds – scholarships or gifts from interested friends - to start a university program. So they wait.

Jobs are also quite scarce for anyone in Bor, let alone young girls just out of high school. PESS has been investigating ways to help our graduates start their own businesses, so these ambitious young women can use the knowledge gained in high school to earn an income. Daniel Gai, executive director of PESS, wants to start a vocational training school in Bor. When Daniel was in the US last year, PESS purchased the rights to use a curriculum, Get Hope Global, to teach entrepreneurship and basic business principles. A few of our past graduates have started their own enterprises and some of these businesswomen could help Daniel train other graduates. Daniel feels that one area of opportunity is tailoring. Cloth is obtainable in Bor, but dresses and shirts are not so easy to find. This creates an opportunity for young women who want to start a business sewing clothes. Daniel and his team are looking for other such business possibilities

Recently, Daniel discovered that a new technical training center had opened in Bor. He was asked by the operator of the training college to select six former students to enter the program with the possibility of becoming trainers in various skills that will be taught by the college. The six are doing very well and will graduate from the program June 28. Daniel’s vision is that these young women will find employment and be able to train other students coming out of the PESS program.

We also recently learned of a program operated by the UN Mission in South Sudan that is offering skills training for young people out of work. The program is teaching construction techniques, sewing and other skills useful in the budding economy of South Sudan.

It would be hard to say that the economy of South Sudan is booming, but there are slivers of hope for higher education, for business development, and for work. PESS is taking advantage of these so that girls who go to school with the educational programs we operate will have paths to success after they graduate. Many of the students report that whether they enter the workforce or become a homemaker raising a family, their lives have been transformed through the educational opportunities that PESS has offered to them. REMEMBER – we could not be doing this without you. Your contributions are making it all possible. Thanks so much!

Mar 22, 2019

Project Education South Sudan Update Mar 22, 2019

Flood Damaged Latrines at Sunlight Primary School
Flood Damaged Latrines at Sunlight Primary School

Bathrooms are important. How can almost 300 elementary school students, along with their teachers make it through a school day without bathrooms? Daniel Gai, who runs the PESS program in South Sudan, had to deal with that problem.

We shared with all of you last year that heavy rains caused flooding in Bortown, where PESS runs its educational programs for girls. In Bortown, there is no public sewer system, just as there is no public water supply or utility company. For those of us used to living in a modern city, this is hard to conceive, but for people in South Sudan, it is a way of life. Pit latrines are a necessity, and every household – schools as well – must have them.

When heavy rains fell last May, the Sunlight Primary School was flooded. In fact, classrooms were flooded several times over a month. Not only did this cause havoc for the operation of the school, but it caused the school’s latrines to collapse and become unusable. Only one latrine remained functional. School has continued to operate since then with 300 students plus teachers having access to only one latrine.

Several generous donors from the US pitched in to help – giving funds for new, better built, latrines at Sunlight School. After the rainy season was over, construction began and now the new latrines are in use. The new latrines have concrete walls underground, and a concrete floor, so similar floods in the future will not cause the same damage.

Sunlight Primary School is important to PESS because it supplies many of the high school students who join our program. It also provides teaching jobs for graduates of our program. In a young country with a fledgling economy, trying to find its legs, it is important to work with partners who help make the economy work. Sunlight School is such a partner.

PESS continues to support 53 girls in 9 different schools in Bortown, South Sudan, all of them eager to get a high school diploma and make a contribution to their community. PESS provides tuition for the students to go to private school since government schools do not operate on a regular basis. Students also participate in after-school tutoring and out-of-school leadership groups where they discuss topics of global concern and offer mutual support to group members.

Twenty of the students graduated at the end of 2018 and took their national exams in January. This will qualify them to go on to university or to get a job, maybe some of them at Sunlight Primary School – with its new latrines.

New students started a new year of high school in February, taking the place of the recent graduates. Each student says a huge thanks to all of you who, with your generous donations, help them succeed.

New Latrines at Sunlight Primary School
New Latrines at Sunlight Primary School
 
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