Jun 3, 2021

GIRLS GEARING UP TO HELP COMMUNITIES

Saratou is ready for the BAC 2021
Saratou is ready for the BAC 2021

We are very proud!  Thanks to your sponsorship, we are able to offer scholarships to young girls from underprivileged backgrounds to receive a quality education at Hampaté Bâ School Complex in Niamey. This is a real gift ! Our project puts girls first due to their special responsibility to pass on knowledge to future generations. 

Indeed, only 7% of girls in Niger have the opportunity to attend secondary school, and too many adolescent girls are forced to drop out because of financial difficulties, early marriages, and gender bias.

MEETING CHALLENGES THROUGH DIGITAL CONNECTION

To meet some of these drop-out challenges, our Non-Profit, “les Amis de Hampaté Bâ” has a committed team who has worked to create an ICT training program where we can motivate girls to go as far as possible in their academic studies, while simultaneously gaining an understanding of basic computer skills, concepts, attitudes and qualities needed to become agents of effective social change locally and globally. This computer training has helped to expand the girls’ knowledge of the world and strengthen their confidence in finding more easily a job, thus becoming valued providers for their families and capable of improving families’ well-being by generating much needed income. Indeed, these classes can have significant impact on the girls’ economic aspirations. The new computer skills, coupled with education, can inspire girls to increasingly become independent voices in their communities, while also breaking the cycle of poverty and meeting the global challenges of our times.

In spite of big personal challenges and tough times for succeeding exams during the pandemic, the scholarship girls have held on to their dreams and career aspirations with determination, hard work, and hope. However, much courage and patience is required, as success is not always immediate.  Sometimes failure comes before success.

Up until the age of 18, we ensure our scholarship girls are in full time education or vocational training.This helps to pave the way for further education, should that be the direction in which they wish to move.

MEET THE GIRLS

SARATOU’S STORY

Saratou was raised alone by her illiterate mother, as her father died when she was only a few years old. Her mom has very little resources, mainly from selling water, so when Saratou finished primary school, her mom was not able to afford any more schooling for her. Can you imagine not being able to go to school anymore at 12 years old ? Think how different your life would be!  Luckily,  based on her good results, we were able to award her a scholarship to attend Hampaté Bâ Middle School. Saratou was very motivated by her studies, but in spite of remediation classes and her fervent desire to learn, she was penalised by her poor living conditions: no electricity to study at home, no one to help with homework at home, and long walks to get to school every day.

Alas, Saratou did not succeed her Baccalaureate exam and she was far from getting it even if she tried a second time. To remedy this situation, our charity proposed her a 2- year vocational training program majoring in “Computer Programming for Enterprises” which could lead quickly to a professional diploma and a job. Faced with another new challenge, Saratou got discouraged as the computer course was highly specialised and she was lacking tools to be up to level.

We did 2 things to help her:  We were able to offer her an after-school group tutoring class in computer science for a few months and thanks to your support, we also bought her a small, inexpensive, but very useful computer. This solution changed everything for her!  One obviously needs a personal computer for Computer Management courses!  She was able to do homework on her computer and turn in an elaborate Internship Report.  Her grade results started to soar and she is now ready to pass a Professional Baccalauréate. We admire her personal courage to have continued striving to succeed in spite of tackling a new major in a new school.  Thanks to basic computer skills learned at Hampaté Bâ School, furthered by extensive training in specific software programs during 2 years, she will have a profession and be able to help support her mother and  contribute to her community.

FARIDA’S STORY

Farida also represents what can be achieved through your Sponsorship. Farida comes from a very poor family, with 7 brothers and sisters, so her opportunities were limited. She has always dreamed of becoming a mid-wife or gynecologist and has the deep desire to help other women in her community. Her scholarship at Hampaté Bâ School served her well. But In spite of her excellent results year after year, for some unknown reason, she didn’t succeed her Baccalaureate exam on the first try. Even though she was terribly disappointed, she continued to work hard and follow regularly all the remediation courses that we offered her while she re-did a second time the last year of high school courses. Due to her intensive efforts, she succeeded the Bac on her second try, and not only that!  She received a State scholarship to enter a highly reputed medical school and was number 1 on the  entrance test.

As in the case of Saratou, Farida was missing a very essential tool. Indeed, computers are now necessary for medical studies. The professors were giving their courses with drawings, schemas, and photos, all available on USB keys, which she couldnt manage since she did not have a computer, and therefore was penalised in her studies.  Once again, thanks to your support, we were able to purchase a computer for her.

Farida is now a very successful student in her 2nd year of medical studies and is following internships in hospitals to help deliver babies as well as caring for new mothers with difficulties.  She is definitely ready and willing to help her community and also aid her parents who live in poverty. 

EMPOWERING GIRLS

To empower girls and young women, we ensure that education plays a key role. By educating girls – their opportunities as women are broadened. Further education in Niger can be very costly, and traditional beliefs around the role of women in the home, mean girls are not always encouraged or confident enough to pursue the career of their dreams.

By giving adolescent girls the tools they need to improve their own lives, and by engaging them in efforts to improve the well-being of entire families and to uplift their communities, we are promoting the progress of the entire society. We empower girls to stand up for themselves and we help them reach their dreams.

TOOLS NEEDED 

Saratou and Farida are only two examples of how the success of these girls depends on your sponsorship, especially concerning badly needed tools like computers. We wish to thank everyone who is already donating towards scholarships for girls’ vocational training.

DOING YOUR PART

You are doing your part to ensure that more bright minds have the opportunities they deserve — to explore, to grow and eventually to give back. Your belief in these girls and your caring makes all the difference. Now students dont have to give up, thanks to YOU !  With access to opportunity, girls CAN succeed!

In order to help girls fulfill their career dreams and aspirations, we welcome sponsorship of our girl empowerment projects.  Will you give today to ensure education doesn’t stop for these girls in need?

Thank you!

Saratou with her new tool
Saratou with her new tool
Internship report typed with new computer
Internship report typed with new computer
Middle school student using Word to format a text
Middle school student using Word to format a text
Farida first day at Medical school
Farida first day at Medical school
Farida in the lab using a microscope
Farida in the lab using a microscope
Feb 5, 2021

A NEW YEAR, A NEW DAWN

Ready for the New Dawn!
Ready for the New Dawn!

This year our Association’s goals are basically the same as for the last 12 years :  

Supporting underprivileged children in Niger to go to school and gain key skills to succeed in life.

So what about the new Year ?

As time goes by, our projects remain stable, but the outcome of repeatedly improving the quality of education for our students at Hampaté Bâ School is becoming more evident each year. Those “children” who had reading and writing deficiencies in 6th grade  have now grown up and are successfully completing their secondary school education. Moreover, with this new year, we see that many of those who succeeded their Baccalaureate in prior years, are now attending Higher Education Universities and Professional Institutes. (Business Schools, Accounting and Financial Schools, Health Institutes, Technology Institutes, etc.)They are now the role models for our students presenting their Bac this new year. 

What is the new Dawn ?

Improved learning conditions, textbooks, and tutoring at Hampaté Bâ School have drastically reduced the drop-out rates and have given amazing results. 

Students who were struggling before, especially girls, have been turned into confident above average achievers!  They have not only been brought up to level, but they are surpassing all expectations and are among the highest achievers in their class. In fact, inspired by tutoring classes, many of our girls are excelling in scientific studies and dreaming of brilliant careers. 

International Day of Women and Girls in Science

Each year on February 11th, the United Nations marks the International Day of Women and Girls in Science. Its a chance to reflect on how the situation has improved for women working in the fields of science.

Here are what some of our girl students presenting the Scientific Bac 2020 have to say :

Nafissa comments: “I love studies in physics and chemistry and everyone thinks it is strange for a girl to be interested in these subjects, but I am so Impassioned by these subject matters and definitely aim to have a job in technology or engineering.”

Saratou is keen on math. “My absolute passion is maths. What I really want to explore is the field of biomathematics and I am ready to  participate in as many local and international conferences as possible that are relevant to my field of study. I want to learn about opportunities for research grants and am excited to meet the challenge.”

Aminatou wants to help in medical research for Covid 19. “I think the global community has made a lot of effort in inspiring girls in science. I really want to be participate in leading actions for innovation in this domain.”  

Our efforts to support underprivileged boys and girls and give them equal opportunities for education, seem to have given birth to unexpected, outstanding results.
Your continued donations will help us keep the momentum going and give these students a chance for a better future.
You can make the difference ! Thank you!
 
Middle school girls: Happy for back to school
Middle school girls: Happy for back to school
So grateful for books
So grateful for books
Candidates for BAC 2021
Candidates for BAC 2021
Thank goodness for books to prepare the BAC
Thank goodness for books to prepare the BAC
The scientific girls
The scientific girls
High school back to school
High school back to school
Feb 2, 2021

HEALTHY, HAPPY, HOPEFUL NEW YEAR 2021 !!

Happy New Year 2021
Happy New Year 2021

“Healthy, Happy, and Hopeful “ are three powerful words that express challenging concepts, especially during one of the most unique moments in world’s history, the Covid-19 era, and especially for young women in Niger. The coronavirus pandemic has laid bare the deep inequalities in societies; young girls are missing out on basic healthcare, cut off from education, and left without protection.

HEALTHY

We are proud to report that thanks to your encouraging donations to our non-profit “Les Amis de Hampaté Bâ”,  and to our girl empowerment projects, many of our underprivileged scholarship girls have been attracted to working in the field of medical studies and specialized health care and have made good use of the opportunities we have offered them.

The conditions are incredibly difficult, but this is where we see the power of girls. Times are tough and yet,  when girls are valued and educated they become women who are healthier, have fewer children, earn more, stand up for their rights and educate their sons and daughters equally. Families thrive. Communities, nations and the world are healthier, safer, and more prosperous. Its definitely the best investment we can make.

Mariama and 3 of her friends all graduated in 2018 from Hampaté Bâ Middle School with BEPC diplomas and afterwards chose to follow a 3 year cycle  in a renowned health institute in Niamey to get an ASB diploma to become Health Assistants. They are all passionate about health and caring for populations in need. Their studies have provided them with both theoretical knowledge and practical experience through two internships in hospitals in Niamey.  They have succeeded brilliantly so far in their studies. But now the big adventure begins ! This month they will be leaving Niamey to travel 100 kilometers and stay for 2 months in removed villages to provide healthcare to precarious populations. How courageous is that !

As for Affisatou, she succeeded in getting her Scientific Baccalaureate in 2019 from Hampaté Bâ High School and applied for one of the top ranked Medical Schools in Niamey. Not only that, but on the entrance exam, she was # 1 of all the students who applied! In her second year of studies, she is now assisting with childbirth in clinics, and loving every minute of it. School hours are more than 8 hours daily and internships are very demanding. But Affisatou is sure of what she wants, and thanks to our support, she is able to pursue her dream to become a gynecologist. So far, her grade average of 18/20 would tend to make us believe that her dream will come true.

Affisatou says with pride :“Thank you for your help and your support.

As long as the blood runs in my veins, Ill keep on making my best efforts. This has been my passion since my childhood.”

Saratou is another rising young girl, who has received a scholarship from us for the last 7 years. She was the most promising scientific major at Hampaté Bâ High School and passed her Baccalaureat with flying colors in 2020. Her choice is to get her 3 year degree to become a nurse in yet another excellent Health Institute, and she has very specific reasons for doing so. Having been raised in an impoverished family, she wants to help other underprivileged women to be cared for, since she knows how incredibly difficult it is for girls and women in Niger to be recognized for their merit and to succeed. When we asked her why she chose to follow medical studies instead of accounting, she replied:

“It’s because I thought about my future and realized that I liked the idea of Health related studies over and above all others. The reason is that I really want to help people, especially women in Niger, since those who weren’t able to go to school, suffer so much in this country. So I wanted more than anything to help other women in Niger to have good health and a better life.”

HAPPY 

Just look at the smiles on the girls’ faces and you can tell they are happy. They are blossoming in spite of all the challenges, thanks to your support. What makes them happy ? Receiving a quality education, books, good food, tutoring, specialized training, and ultimately getting diplomas leading to decent jobs. 

HOPEFUL

It isn’t easy to be hopeful in Niger. Out of 189 countries in the United Nations, Niger has ranked the lowest on the Human Development Report, due to drastically underdeveloped health and education facilities.

But there is hope for our scholarship girls thanks to your continued support. Their lives have been greatly affected by the power of education. They have been inspired to create a different future. Through their hard work, determination and courage, they are able to succeed, become autonomous and therefore break the poverty cycle.  

It is a truly rewarding experience to work closely with these girls who are creating change and are the fearless leaders of tomorrow. 

Together we can make a difference in their lives !

Let’s do it ! 

 

New books bring smiles
New books bring smiles
Books for Bac preparation
Books for Bac preparation
Orientation Meeting
Orientation Meeting
Students presenting Scientific Bac 2020
Students presenting Scientific Bac 2020
Students presenting Literary Bac 2020
Students presenting Literary Bac 2020
Health Care students in nursing uniforms
Health Care students in nursing uniforms
 
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