In September 2015, Dyson started his freshman year in high school at Phalombe Secondary School in Malawi, but struggled to focus in the classroom because he knew his mother would not be able to pay his tuition fees (~$50 per term) for the entire year. He figured he would have to drop out.
Dyson is the last born in a family of six children. His father died in 2004 during a fishing accident - he father fished in order to support Dyson's family. Dyson's mother is alive, but unable to provide enough financial assistance for Dyson's education due to lack of education herself and lack of sustained employment.
Dyson knew the importance of education and greatly wanted to continue his schooling so he applied for support from EKARI Foundation in early 2016. Although he struggled to keep up his grades during his freshman year, his teachers highly recommended that EKARI support Dyson due to his hard work ethic and impoverished family. His teachers saw something special in Dyson and knew that he wouldn't be able to continue his education without EKARI's support. We accepted Dyson and started supporting him during the 2016-17 school year. Our In-Country Director, Elias, saw a great change in Dyson this past school year: he moved from placing in the middle of his class to the top of his class!
Dyson just participated in EKARI's Tutoring Program in August. He says of the program, "During tutorial lessons teachers are serious with their work and their attention is always on us unlike when we are in schools. Our knowledge and thinking capacity has greatly improved because when we have problems teachers always attend to us very seriously and we feel very good when we receive answers for the questions we ask during these lessons. I am now able to be in position one in many subjects because my understanding grows every holiday!"
Dyson has learned a great deal from our 3 Meals a Day Program as well. Dyson was raised in a family who did not know what breakfast was. He never ate breakfast before joining EKARI. Through EKARI's 3 Meals a Day Program, he now understands how eating three meals day, especially breakfast, aids his studies. He plans to share this knowledge with his community by giving talks in his community's elementary schools. He hopes the children will share this knowledge with their families and all will start to eat breakfast!
Dyson stated in his application to EKARI, "... education is very important to me because it will help me to end ignorance, to support my life, to live a successful life, and live independently."
This is an amazing statement from Dyson and is right in line with our mission.
At EKARI, we believe in the singular power of education to break the cycle of extreme poverty. Every person, at any age, has the right to the knowledge and skills they need to become self-sufficient.
Dyson and his fellow students will be back in school next week building upon the knowledge they gained from the tutoring sessions in August!
We thank you and appreciate your continued support of the Tutoring and 3 Meals a Day Programs.