COVID-19  Benin Project #46277

Help Feed Women and Children Affected by COVID-19

by Benin Education Fund BEF
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Help Feed Women and Children Affected by COVID-19
Help Feed Women and Children Affected by COVID-19
Help Feed Women and Children Affected by COVID-19

 

 

 

 

BEF highlight of key accomplishments thus far for School Year 2020 - 2021

- For the current school year, the Benin Education Fund, in addition to scholarships, rented three (3) additional community houses for the students that recently graduated from secondary school and moved to the university. In Total, for the current school year, 2020 – 2021, we are providing housing for 50 university students, including 15 female students.  

- Our housing budget has significantly increased compared to previous years.

- Since 2018, a special program, BEF has created a new special program aimed recruiting our past drop out former beneficiaries and enrolling them in vocational schools, including engineering on renewable power energy, and information technology. For this year alone, 4 students are enrolled in such schools.

- Our program has focused more STEM, including mechanical, engineering (civil and electrical) fields.

- BEF also provided relief to 50 households economically affected by the COVID-19 pandemic by supplying food and cash transfers.

 

See attachment for Financial Update Table


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Pascaline - COVID relief recipient
Pascaline - COVID relief recipient

The past few months have been quite busy for the Benin Education Fund (BEF). We are so grateful for the support from our donors around the world. Through this project and by redirecting part of our regular budget, we have been able to provide cash transfers and food for 50 households in and around Tanguieta, Toucountouna, and Natitingou in northern Benin.

Too many people are facing famine and starvation due to COVID-19, and the need is particularly great in rural and northern communities in Benin (where most of our students are from). In Benin, the informal economy employs 70% to 90% of the population. The pandemic forced a shutdown of most commercial activities, taking away the life-line employment for poorer communities already susceptible to famine, especially women and children. Our COVID relief efforts targeted families in rural towns who rely on micro and small commercial activities (for example, selling snacks or sundries on the side of the road). The families generally live day to day with money from these activities, so during the shut down they often have no savings to fall back on.

We identified 50 beneficiary households  through an intense process. Our university students volunteered to support the project, and they visited every family with a questionnaire to collect the detailed family situation. BEF staff then vetted the information via follow up phone calls. The families are now receiving cash transfers or food to get through the months of the pandemic. As economic activities resume, most of the individuals are resuming their informal activities and returning to independence. Some have lost everything and need start-up capital to resume work, so BEF staff are identifying grant programs from the Benin government and opportunities for small loans from the local Micro Finance Institutions.

Because our university students volunteered their time to this cause, 100% of donations are going to the cash transfers and food. This was also an important learning and personal growth activity for these students -- something they can be proud of and also count as a professional development opportunity since they now have firsthand experience working on a grassroots development program.

We are so proud of all of our students. Even though they struggle to afford basics like school fees, they saw an even greater need in their communities and stepped up selflessly to help. They, and we, truly appreciate your support - thank you.

Nafissa - COVID relief recipient
Nafissa - COVID relief recipient
Marcel - COVID relief recipient
Marcel - COVID relief recipient
Orientation for student volunteers - COVID Relief
Orientation for student volunteers - COVID Relief
Student volunteers ready for house visits - COVID
Student volunteers ready for house visits - COVID
Student volunteers before house visits - COVID
Student volunteers before house visits - COVID

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Organization Information

Benin Education Fund BEF

Location: Annandale, VA - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Alphonse Kouagou
Annandale, Virginia United States
$420 raised of $25,000 goal
 
3 donations
$24,580 to go
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