You are opening doors for children like Judith!
Judith is a 13-year-old primary 7 student at Nyaka Primary School. One of three children, she lives with her mother and younger sister in a four-room house with mud walls four kilometers away from school. Her mother works hard to support her two daughters, selling some of the meager crops she grows and working as a short-term laborer for other people in the community. All of her hard work earns enough money to buy some matooke or posho for supper. Judith helps out as best she can. She fetches water and firewood, and she looks after her younger sister. But because she lives far from school, she often leaves home very early in the morning and does not return until suppertime.
Even though she is not always home to help her mother, Judith’s family has been supportive of her education. When Judith was still a baby, her father passed away from an unknown illness. An elderly lady from the neighborhood, whom Judith called “Grandmother”, moved in with the family to help Judith’s mother care for Judith and her siblings. It is thanks to her grandmother that Judith became a Nyaka student. The grandmother saw how young Judith was struggling at home but knew that the family could never afford school fees for a decent school. So, she approached Nyaka, because she had heard that Nyaka students attend school for free. She petitioned for Judith to be admitted, and her petition was granted!
When Judith turned six, she started school at Nyaka and has never looked back. She says she is proud to go to a school with such a good reputation and loves that she can rely on her school for support. She gets both breakfast and lunch each day as well as school supplies. Her favorite subjects are English and science, and someday she hopes to be a doctor in Canada or the United States, “because there, I will be able to make a lot of money which I can use to help other children get the kind of education I am getting.”
With your help, Judith will be able to achieve her dream and give back to her community.
Next year, Judith will go to Nyaka Vocational and Secondary School to begin her secondary education. She is excited for this new chapter in her life and plans to study hard this year to make sure she passes her exams!
We know Judith and her classmates will do great things because you have empowered them to succeed!
You are helping your students excel in STEM (Science Technology Engineering Math)!
Your students need as much exposure to STEM education as possible! It's estimated that as many as 70% of jobs in the world will require some STEM education when your students are in the workforce.
The Government of Uganda has made the study of science subjects, namely; physics, chemistry, biology and mathematics compulsory for all secondary school students. That's wonderful!
However, many schools in Uganda just can't keep up. They don't have the curriculum or the facilities to prepare their students. When students sit for their exams, the test assumes that they've been given high quality STEM education.
Thanks to you, your students now have a biology lab and a computer lab where they can learn. With your continued support, we will be able to construct the physics and chemistry labs your students need to complete their education!
Thank you for being a champion for your students at NVSS!
Little Shirah struggled to hold back tears as her teacher told her that she had to leave school. She tried not to look at the other children--her new friends--but she felt them stare at her. They all wore nice school uniforms. She was still in her dirty dress and bare feet.
Shirah wanted so badly to stay at school but her teacher just shook her head. You have to pay your fees to stay at school. You have to have books and pencils. Even though she was very young, Shirah knew that her teacher might as well have asked for a brick of gold. Her mother could never afford to send her to school.
Shirah ran home and cried on her mother's lap. It's hard to imagine what a mother tells her daughter when she learns that the world isn't kind. As much as her mother loved her, she could not fix the pain in Shirah's heart.
"Sometimes I think I had the worst life in the world."
That is how Shirah describes her life then. Her father had died from HIV/AIDS and her mother couldn't provide for their young family without him.
Without school, Shirah's future was laid out in front of her. Most orphaned girls grow up in poverty. They tend to get married young. Their children are less likely to go to school. They are trapped in an endless cycle of poverty.
Thankfully, Shirah's life took a different turn. A small primary school opened right in her village. It was free and it was meant for HIV/AIDS orphans like her. She was one of the lucky children who got to go to Nyaka Primary School.
She told us "I got a chance to put on shoes and have free education, which I never believed in my life."
She learned to believe again. She worked hard to do well in school and you were there to help her whenever she faced trouble. Last year all of her hard work paid off. She was admitted to Vancouver Island University (VIU) on a full-ride scholarship.
Shirah is an amazing young woman and we know she will do amazing things for the world. Her success is only possible because she you gave her the opportunity.