Marshall Direct Fund

Our mission is to improve relations between the West and the Muslim world by working together to alleviate poverty and illiteracy via sustainable educational and economic development in Southwest Asia.
Nov 25, 2013

Shazia's story and update on MDF schools

“My name is Shazia. My family is poor but hardworking. We receive our livelihood from harvesting, and I was responsible for grazing our cattle, helping my family with their work, and serving as a maid in other homes to increase family income. When I first started at Sheikhupura school, the teachers took pity on me and cut my hair, and nails, taught me how to brush my teeth. I felt like a brand new person.  I could look in the mirror and feel proud of myself. They were so kind, it’s hard to keep clean with the type of work I had to do from the moment I left school. When I started falling behind because I did not have time to do homework, the teachers spoke with my parents. I would not be able to excel in school if I didn’t also do my homework and study for my exams. One day we had a field trip to the zoo. I was SO happy! I got to see animals that I had only previously known of in books. I started reading aloud all the boards at the zoo and the other students were surprised by my reading ability. When I was asked how I could read some of these difficult words I replied, “Before I started school I was a dirty little girl, now I am confident, smart, and important”. My parents now excuse me from most of my responsibilities so I have enough time to study. They are proud and happy and now understand the value of an education. I have promised them I will be a good student and share all that I am learning so others can benefit from my education too!”

Shazia is one of many students that have faced great challenges in their lives and hurdles to gain access to education. Thank you for your support in making it possible for her and so many others to gain skills and confidence that will forever change their lives. The schools resumed in late August after Eid holidays. Due to some issues with an anticipated grant not being delivered yet we are short funding to fully support the schools with sufficient uniforms and books which has affected morale and attendance, but we have faith that with the upcoming holidays we will be able to raise additional funding to cover this unanticipated shortfall. Should you or anyone you know be interested in donating before year end there is a 100% match opportunity through Global Giving starting at 12pm EST on December 3rd. There is a limited amount of matching funds available so we urge donations to be made as close to the opening date/time as possible.

As always, we welcome site visits by anyone interested in MDF schools and activities. Know that this project enables youth and their families to obtain credible education, critical thinking skills, and provides a safe place to learn and grow where they can better respond to natural disasters and other challenges Pakistan faces in the future. Please help us generate awareness – Become a fan of our Facebook page, join us on Twitter, and share with your networks. If you would like to start a MDF Circle group in your community there are various one-time or re-occurring ideas and activities that we would be pleased to share. You can reach us at info@marshalldirectfund.org or at +01(970)963-3150. Thank you so much for your continued support!

Oct 3, 2013

Update on MDF vocational training activities

Training activities 8.2013
Training activities 8.2013

We are pleased to share that a training center in Multan has been opened and over 500 women in 2013 trained in partnership with over five different organizations throughout Pakistan. We have several more scheduled over the next few months and will have no problem of meeting our target goal of training 1,000 women this year. Thank you to all of our supporters who have made the success of this program possible. We plan to support the female entrepreneurs beyond graduation by providing them with the market linkage and business support they need to have successful enterprises. To view more pictures please visit our Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/MarshallDirectFund?ref=br_tf. Women participating in the first product launch with Peace of the Action hope to get items in the international marketplace by late winter/early spring of 2014 - Stay tuned! 

We have just received a renewed matching grant from Safer World Foundation that enables donors to receive a 50% match for the vocational training program until the $50,000 funding pool is used (eight other organizations are also eligible)! Please share this opportunity with your friends and family that you think might be interested in supporting a project like this and seeing their donor dollars go farther.

MDF encourages your involvement and welcomes any ideas that would help us to reach deserving young women in Pakistan and attract wider support. The project that you are supporting provides a safe place for mothers and their families to learn and develop skills that help make the world a safer and more secure place for all. Please help us generate awareness – become a fan of our Facebook page, join us on Twitter, and share with your networks. If you would like to start a MDF Allies in Action group in your community there are various one-time or re-occurring ideas and activities that we would be pleased to share. You can reach us at info@marshalldirectfund.org or +01 (970) 963-3150. Learn more about our activities by visiting our website at www.marshalldirectfund.org

Thank you on behalf of the students, entrepreneurs and MDF staff!

Graduates
Graduates
Aug 15, 2013

Update on MDF school activities

Join us in creating an army of Malalas
Join us in creating an army of Malalas

It has been blazing hot in the Punjab with power outages of up to 18 hours a day, but despite this, it has been a full few months for the staff and students at Marshall Direct Fund schools. April was the start of another school year and we welcomed 40 new nursery aged students. Their smiles and eagerness to learn is something precious to watch. In addition, schools instituted an annual election where students vote for leaders to assume various responsibilities including mentoring younger students, keeping the schools clean, and serving as representatives of their class and school. In May and June students made cards for Mother’s Day, 5th graders participated in a cooking class, a writing competition was held, measles vaccine administered, an anti-smoking assembly took place, and parent teacher meetings scheduled to discuss homework to be performed over the summer break. During the first month of summer holiday teachers held a camp to assist students needing extra help in any given subject. Now teachers are preparing for their annual training and are in the midst of participation in an exchange with teachers in the USA. The Story Swap is conducted in partnership with the Aspen Institute’s Aspen Writers Foundation. Teachers share correspondence to get to know one another then share a personal story that has impacted their life. These stories are then written by their counterpart as if they were them, putting themselves in the other persons shoes. We very much look forward to the final stories and the impact experienced by this meaningful exchange.  

We welcome site visits by anyone interested in MDF schools and activities. A darling video of some of the students, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QPyItZU5Tiw, is online to thank you for believing in them.  Know that this project enables youth and their families to obtain credible education, critical thinking skills, and provides a safe place to learn and grow where they can better respond to natural disasters and other challenges Pakistan faces in the future. Please help us generate awareness – Become a fan of our Facebook page, join us on Twitter, and share with your networks. If you would like to start a MDF Circle group in your community there are various one-time or re-occurring ideas and activities that we would be pleased to share. You can reach us at info@marshalldirectfund.org or at +01(970)963-3150. Thank you so much for your continued support!

 

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