Educate girls and fight poverty in Senegal

by Women's Global Education Project
Vetted
Kambe in May 2015
Kambe in May 2015

Kambe has been a WGEP Sisters to School scholar for three years and is currently in her final year of high school in Sokone. She lives with one of her older sisters in Sokone so that she can attend high school there since her parents’ village where she grew up is too far from her school.

Kambe was surprised at what a huge difference the scholarship from WGEP has made in her life. Prior to receiving the scholarship, her family lived in very difficult conditions. They would go out into the fields after the millet harvest and collect whatever was left so they could sell it in the local market to have enough money to purchase school supplies. Kambe is the fourth of five children and only her and her youngest sister attend school. One of her older sisters went to Dakar to work as a domestic helper in order to make money to send home to her family. All of Kambe’s other siblings, except for the youngest, have married and dropped out of school.

Kambe’s mother is very supportive of her daughter’s education and herself takes adult literacy classes through Sisters to School in order to learn to read and support her daughter in school.

Kambe wants to continue her studies after she passes her final high school exam. Her favorite subjects are English and French. Her favorite activities include reading and helping to prepare tea for her family and guests. After years of toiling in the fields, Kambe would like to work in an office upon receiving her college degree.

Fana, back left, with classmates
Fana, back left, with classmates

Your support has impacted the lives of hundreds of girls and their communities in rural Senegal. Thanks to people like you, Fana has been given the chance to finally attend school and has encouraged other girls in her community to go to school too! She recognizes the importance of educating girls and has used the skills she’s learned from the program to help others. Here is her story:

“My name is Fana and I am 19 years old; I am a scholar in high school in Sokone in the “Sisters to School” program. Education is often considered the fastest method for changing conditions for girls and their families, and is also the best way to fight poverty.

My village didn’t have a school when I began my studies. The closest school was 2 kilometers away in Sokone. My parents didn’t have the means necessary to pay for my studies. It was very difficult but I was getting by.

When I passed 6th grade, I started middle school in Sokone; things became more complicated when I was housed with a family where the father didn’t want anyone to light the lamps in the bedrooms to do schoolwork at night. This made me a little crazy because I loved my studies and I wanted to be among the best in my class. Luckily, Madame Adji’s (Senegal Project Director) daughter was in my class and explained the problem to her mom. Madame Adji invited me to her house in the evenings so that I was able to study until 10pm. At the end of the year, one of our teachers began housing me. This is where I live during the school year, even today. I live in better conditions.

I became a scholar in high school in 2013. I regularly received enrollment expenses, school supplies, toiletries, training, and advising. I took summer classes in 2013 to prepare for the 2014 final exam. In sum, the program has allowed me to improve my academic performance, and I won the Prize of Excellence in French at high school in Sokone.

My parents support education for girls, but do not have the means necessary to support my sisters. My village has a school now, and I support the girls in my village, encouraging them in their studies and educating them based on the training I’ve received through the program. We also educate parents, especially the mothers of girls. The whole village likes the school, and all the children go there.

I want to become an important person and work in a field that supports vulnerable populations, especially women.”

Thank you for your support and commitment to Women’s Global Education Project and for helping young women like Fana!

Links:

Mbarou, right, with a classmate.
Mbarou, right, with a classmate.

Here is a letter from WGEP Senegal scholar Mbarou about her daily life and aspirations:

"Hi, my name is Mbarou and I am 15 years old. I live with my parents and 6 brothers and sisters. Every morning, I get up at 5am to go over my lessons. I eat breakfast at 7am and go to school at 7:30; I go home to eat lunch at 2:30pm and return to school at 3:30. When I get home from school, I am able to relax a bit. Then I do my household chores and eat dinner at 8pm. After dinner, I do my schoolwork from 8pm to 11.

For fun, I like to talk to my parents about life. I also like to do math exercises with my friends. My favorite subject in school is Earth and Life Sciences because it is important for my future: I want to grow up to be the Minister of Health. My proudest moment in school was when I received the best grade in science. One of the most interesting things I have learned from this program is how to protect oneself against microbes.

I plan on supporting the education of girls through my own success and on informing and motivating others about the importance of education. Success in education is the key to fighting poverty."

Thank you for providing a brighter future for girls like Mbarou!

Links:

Fatou (right) with her high school classmates
Fatou (right) with her high school classmates

Thank you for supporting Women's Global Education Project and our Sisters to School program in Senegal! Your support helps WGEP provide critical scholarships to more than 300 girls in rural Senegal, girls who otherwise would not have the chance to go to school.

One of these girls is Fatou, who was able to complete her education and is currently working as a teacher, where she acts as a role model to other girls. This is what she had to say about how our program made a difference in her life and in the lives of many others in her community: 

"I received scholarship support from 2006 through 2009 when I graduated high school and began training to be a teacher. My family was impoverished to the point that they could not afford the books and studies that I needed. I had to walk a long distance to get to school. My grades were very weak in literature, which is fundamental for the the program I was enrolled in at school. With the program “Our Sisters to School,” I was able to continue my studies through my final year of high school. I passed my final tests and received the best grade on the 2009 test in Spanish of all who took it at that exam center.  

I must emphasize the importance of the gender training that allowed me to better manage my class when I became a teacher: I manage to easily integrate gender into my classroom practices. Additionally, with the leadership workshop, I’ve learned to plan other training to gain access to leadership positions. I couldn’t enroll in college because I didn’t have the means. Instead, I opted for this path and hope to continue my studies later. 

Because of this program, people in my village now understand the importance of education and all the girls go to school.I am a teacher, wife, mother, daughter, and sister; it is a bit difficult to manage all those different roles, but, thanks to my education, my family, my in-laws, and my colleagues appreciate me; I am a role model and an example cited by all."

Thank you for your support of WGEP and of women like Fatou! 

Links:

Sarata with classmates in 2007
Sarata with classmates in 2007

Thank you for supporting Women's Global Education Project and our Sisters-to-School program in Senegal! Your support helps WGEP provide critical scholarships to more than 300 girls in rural Senegal, girls who otherwise would not have the chance to go to school.

One of these girls is Sarata, who was able to complete her education and is currently trailblazing in a male-dominated field as a police officer.  This is what she has to say about how our program has made a difference for her:

"Our Sisters to School allowed me to take responsibility for my family, and allowed the village to have intellectual girls who organize and try to improve living conditions, especially in terms of health. Now, my life has changed because I’ve taken responsibility for myself.

I am a police officer, and I do the same work as the men. Life in the army is difficult, but I manage. I am single, and I am first and foremost preparing for my future. I just passed the Baccalauréat in 2013, which shows that I’ve continued studies on my own. I plan on marrying later on and running my own household."

Thank you for your support for WGEP and for inspiring girls like Sarata!

Links:

 

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Organization Information

Women's Global Education Project

Location: Oak Park, IL - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.womensglobal.org
Project Leader:
Amy Maglio
Founder
Oak Park, Illinois United States
$197,855 raised of $200,000 goal
 
 
1,111 donations
$2,145 to go
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