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 Education  Kenya Project #18256

Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya

by Hopeful Africa
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya
Improve the education of 2,000 students in Kenya

Dear Hopeful Africa supporters,

I would like to take this opportunity to shed light on some very important news regarding Hopeful Africa, Inc. After nine full years, Hopeful Africa will be closing its operations as a nonprofit organization. For those who have known the organization or me (Moses) over these past years, you can imagine this is an incredibly difficult decision and unfortunate outcome for the organization. Research shows that hundreds of nonprofit organizations open and close every year, but it never occurred to me that Hopeful Africa would face this same fate.

With this news, you may have many questions on what caused the closure of the organization. While I personally believe it is a combination of several reasons, I will take a moment to briefly shed light on three main reasons:

  • Founder overextension. This directly applies to me and my responsibilities to the organization. Essentially, I had too many hats to wear within the organization and it was practically impossible for me to fulfill all my roles effectively.
  • Financial instability. Hopeful Africa received funding every year from its loyal supporters through various avenues. Unfortunately, the funding was not sufficient to continue to the programs and operations of the organization effectively and consistently.
  • Less focus on mission-focused activities. From its beginning, Hopeful Africa set out to improve and raise the standard of quality education in Africa. Over the years this was central to the mission and vision of the organization. However, other focus was placed in activities and decisions that deterred from the mission of the organization.

The combination of these three main challenges led the leaders of Hopeful Africa to evaluate its future. I personally stepped away from the organization in November 2016 to analyze how to best support the organization due to being “overextended”. In February, the official vote by the Board of Directors was cast to dissolve the organization. I want to add that I personally take any responsibility for part or all of the closure of Hopeful Africa.

It is important for me to assure all past donors of the organization, that all remaining funds of the organization will be disbursed to the partner schools as initially planned.

In the words of a friend who found out about the closing of the organization, he said to me "don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened". With this sentiment in mind, I am indeed very thankful for the past nine years. I will always remember all the experiences, memories and successes with Hopeful Africa. From the bottom of my heart, I am forever grateful for each and every one of you, who believed in our mission and supported us. Each day we moved the needle with progress in Africa, gave me a glimpse of hope for a brighter day tomorrow. Thousands of people came together and invested more than $125,000 to impact thousands of families in Kenya. I still believe to this day that education is still the key to unlocking a lot of potential in Africa. Hopeful Africa’s investment in this sector was and never will be in vain.  

In conclusion, I would like to point out an important aspect of the what the future will hold. As with any organization ceasing to operate, there are negative consequences that will take place. Of these, the most dire of all are those consequences to the communities that Hopeful Africa served.

Essentially the life of each supporter, volunteer, board member and myself will continue mostly unchanged by this decision. However, those who will be impacted the most are the communities in Kenya. To me it is just not any community, but rather my home community. This is where I grew up and these are the people who shaped me to be who I am today. This is why, the closure of Hopeful Africa is nothing but a learning experience in my journey of philanthropic efforts in Africa. To see something I held very dear to my heart come to an end has been one of the toughest experiences in my life. But perhaps it might not have to be the end...

Now I turn to the future and ask “What next?”. Some of you might have asked the same question as you read through this letter. While this letter starting out with unfortunate news, it is going to end with good news. There is still a future to continue some of the work that Hopeful Africa set out to do starting in March 2008. There is an opportunity to continue empowering local communities and families to achieve and reach their dreams. This opportunity is being drawn from the both the successes and failures of Hopeful Africa. What worked, we will build on it, what didn’t we will find a new path. Therefore, if you are interested in embarking on this journey with me please reach out to me, I am providing my contact information at the end of this letter. Just like Hopeful Africa, I cannot do this on my own. In fact, I need more help than ever, to ensure our next initiative is a long-lasting one.

I will end with this:

Some are doctors.

Some are lawyers

Some are professors.

Some are businessmen.

Some are politicians

For me it has become abundantly clear there is nothing more refreshing and life-giving than pouring my life to the embetterment of others. It is my life’s calling and I will always seek to be a blessing others.

If you have any questions or comments regarding the closure of Hopeful Africa or the future initiative, please feel free to reach out to me.

Sincerely,

Moses Bomett

Founder | Hopeful Africa, Inc.

515-822-9567 | bomettmoses@gmail.com

Dear supporters, family, and friends,

Through our work Hopeful Africa has been able to see firsthand the amazing impacts that student sponsorship has on the lives of children. We have seen this for years during our annual trip to Kenya and are reminded time and time again why this work is so important. However, we have been struggling to figure out how we can let our donors and supporters from other parts of the world see and learn about these truly incredible students. Finally, we have found a solution!

Introducing Hopeful Africa’s latest project: The Daisy Documentary

Daisy is a 17-year-old girl who moved away from her family to continue her education. She starts her day at 3 a.m, before the sun even rises. She arrives at school two hours before school starts to study her materials. She is a symbol for Hopeful Africa and a symbol for girls everywhere. Hopeful Africa has created a full-length documentary to help bring to life the story of one student in Kenya, Africa. Daisy's story showcases the life-changing opportunities Hopeful Africa’s Student Sponsorship program provides, and also allows our donors to see the impacts of this program firsthand.

In anticipation of our documentary launch Hopeful Africa supporters are invited to host exclusive documentary screening parties starting November 1. Consider getting a group of friends together at your home, or working with local organizations to host the screening, or airing it during a club meeting. Hosting a documentary screening is an easy way to spread the word about Hopeful Africa and start conversations around education in developing nations. Those interested in hosting a screening, please complete this form. Afterward, a Hopeful Africa team member will reach out with the details on how to set up your event. The full documentary will be aired publicly on November 29.

Tuesday, November 29 is a big day for Hopeful Africa in many ways. First, this is when Daisy’s Documentary will be released. Second, this is also #GivingTuesday which is the beginning of our December GlobalGiving Campaign. The campaign will kick off on #GivingTuesday, November 29 and run through December 31. Hopeful Africa's goal is to sponsor 62 of our current sponsored students plus 8 new students. Secondary school in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is often cost prohibitive, which creates a barrier to education for many students. In fact, current SSA secondary school graduation rates are at 19 percent. As highlighted in the Daisy Documentary, Hopeful Africa's Student Sponsorship program removes this barrier for students who cannot afford school fees, but have shown dedication in school. Hopeful Africa has seen a 100% secondary school graduation rate of the sponsored students to date.Your donation during the Daisy & December GlobalGiving campaign can continue to fuel this program and help students get the education they deserve.

There are many exciting things happening right now for Hopeful Africa and we are so thankful to have your support during this time. As always we are continuing to work towards our four core philosophies in everything we do: educational development, equal partnership, youth engagement, and increased awareness. Thank you for your continued support and partnership in this journey!

-Lauren

Dear supporters, family, and friends, 

Hopeful Africa’s recent Hope Team trip to Kenya was full of excitement and opportunities to learn how we can support our partner schools, teachers, and students even further. Since returning from Kenya we have been working hard to figure out how best to support and enhance the opportunities of the many community members Hopeful Africa supports.

Each trip helps us to build upon the passion and dedication we have toward this cause, because we are able to see firsthand how our work is positively impacting and shaping the lives of students and teachers in Kenya. Because we find this impact so powerful, we want to share some of these stories with you. You can also find more detailed versions of these stories on our blog,http://hopefulafrica.org/blog/.

Through our Student Sponsorship program we have provided 62 annual sponsorships to deserving secondary school students and have seen a 100% secondary graduation rate of sponsored students to date. Of these sponsored students is Caleb from Ogilgei Secondary School. Caleb is currently in 12th grade and ranks third in his class.

Caleb’s goal is to become an engineer. He describes his career aspirations saying, “I am working hard toward achieving this goal to change my society, nation and even Africa at large in order to bring revolution in modern technology and change the world.” Caleb described the impact sponsorship has had on his life stating, “This support has brought great impact on my performance in class. Since I got support from Hopeful Africa, I have not missed any class as we are no longer being sent home for fees and I have immensely improved my grade from D+ to B-.”

One of the impact areas Hopeful Africa has improved over the last few years is the reduction of the teacher to student ratio. Currently, the average teacher to student ratio in sub-Saharan Africa is 1:42. At the start of our partnership, our partner schools were not far from this ratio. Through provision of additional teachers we have been able to reduce the ratio by 33 percent. Through this great progress and we have seen improvement in district rankings and performance of students.

Maureen is a sponsored teacher from Boror Mixed Secondary School where she teaches Biology and Geography. She explained the impact Hopeful Africa has had on her life and teaching career. “I started teaching in Boror Secondary School in 2010 as an untrained teacher. It wasn’t until Hopeful Africa came in that I enrolled in Mount Kenya University to study. I enrolled in a school-based program where I went to school during holiday (April, August and December). Hopeful Africa is the one who made me successful. I graduated from university on December 11, 2015 with a Bachelors of Education (Science) in Biology and Geography.”

The words of Caleb and Maureen are just two of the many people Hopeful Africa helps each year through academic sponsorship for both students and teachers. These words and stories would not be possible without the support you provide. We hope these stories show the difference you make in the lives of students and teachers across Kenya.

However, our work is not done. Our annual trip reminds us of the amazing progress together we have made in this journey, and also reminds us of the importance of continuing our work each and every year. Additional teachers are needed to reduce the ratio of students to teachers, textbooks and resources are needed to enhance learning opportunities, and students need fee assistance to make going to school and learning a reality.

Our work will continue as we are getting ready for another GlobalGiving Bonus Day on Wednesday, September 21. This is an additional opportunity to donate to Hopeful Africa’s cause. Each donation and contribution helps to ensure students and teachers, such as Caleb and Maureen, can continue to receive education and learn in our partner schools. As our work continues to grow, we hope your partnership with our organization grows as well. Thank you for reading and for joining with us in this cause.

Links:

A student at Ogilgei Primary who read a book to us
A student at Ogilgei Primary who read a book to us

Dear supporters, donors, and friends,

Brady and I would like to share some important updates from Kenya! We are currently visiting Hopeful Africa’s seven partner schools to hear their academic accomplishments and learn how we can continue to support their education.

Here are some updates we want to share with you:

Even though Ogilgei Primary School had lower national examination test scores, likely due to a country wide teacher strike, all students from the 2015 8th grade class moved on to secondary schools. Additionally, their top achieving student has been accepted into a prestigious national school.

At Ogilgei Secondary School we had the opportunity to meet the 22 students sponsored by Hopeful Africa. We learned that the sponsored students were the highest achieving students, topping each of their classes. We asked the students how the support of Hopeful Africa has affected them and this is what one of them said:

“Support from Hopeful Africa has brought great impact on my performance in class. Since I got support from Hopeful Africa, I have not missed any class, since we are no longer being sent home for fees and I have immensely improved my grade from D+ to B- and with great confidence I know that I will further improve my grade to a grade which will be valid at any institution and enable me to reach my future dreams. Hopeful Africa has been more like our mother, and we highly appreciate support from Hopeful Africa. May God bless Hopeful Africa, May God bless America.” - Caleb

Kirobon Primary School had the best performance in school history. From 1st grade to 8th grade each class was either 1st, 2nd or 3rd in the district rankings of public schools...this is a huge accomplishment. Brady asked the head teacher why district rankings had improved, and she quickly responded that “It is due to the support Hopeful Africa has provided to our school over the years.”

Emarangishu Primary School is undergoing change with a new head teacher. Mr. Towett has a level of dedication that we have never seen before. He has chosen to live on school grounds, has lengthened the school day to improve the performance, and has brought the whole community together to invest in education. We truly saw the meaning of equal partnership after talking to him. Everyone is excited to see how the school’s performance will improve by the end of the year, and they are confident it will be a significant improvement.

At Kondamet Primary School (previously Marishoni). This school was started a few years ago by the parents in the community because students had to walk more than three miles toschool. Hopeful Africa became involved with the school soon after it began. The school had 12 students in the start of 2014, 77 students in 2015, and it now has 184 students! Last year the school only had two teachers, and now the school has four teachers plus one head teacher employed by the government. Hopeful Africa provides support for two of the four teachers.

Our final experience so far was at Ruiyobei Primary School. There we were welcomed by a new headteacher and a larger staff team. The new administration had worked hard to ensure that the school was fully utilizing the resources at their disposal. This was clearly evident after the headteacher shared that there was a 19% increase in the national examination schools placing the school 3rd in the division! He attributed the success to the support Hopeful Africa has provided.

From providing access to secondary education, to achieving high ranks in the district, and increasing enrollment by over 1000%, we have truly seen the impact Hopeful Africa is making in the lives of thousands of students in Kenya. This would not be possible if it weren’t for the support you provide. You truly make a difference in the lives of youth in Kenya.

Unfortunately, the work is not done. Hopeful Africa’s support is needed more than ever to continue its partnership with these schools. While we have seen the impact at each of these schools, we have also experienced and seen needs and challenges faced by the schools. Additional teachers are still needed to reduce the student to teacher ratios and provide quality education. Textbooks and storybooks are required to boost better learning opportunities for students. Future resources will allow for development to continue at these partner schools.

We hope you will join us in this movement. A movement to give every student in these communities an opportunity to succeed. We have a great opportunity for you to take a part in this. On Wednesday, June 15 GlobalGiving will be matching all donations made to Hopeful Africa at 50% until matching funds run out. This opportunity will allow for you to make a greater impact. Please fill out this simple form with your information and we will remind you on the day of to donate. We hope you will consider this request.

Thank you for reading and we look forward to your support in our upcoming Global Giving campaign.

-Moses & Brady

Meet Caleb one of the 22 students sponsored by H.A
Meet Caleb one of the 22 students sponsored by H.A
Headteacher at Kirobon addressing the students
Headteacher at Kirobon addressing the students
Mr. Towett - Headteacher at Emarangishu Primary
Mr. Towett - Headteacher at Emarangishu Primary
Kondamet coming to life with record attendance
Kondamet coming to life with record attendance
National examination results of Ruiyobei
National examination results of Ruiyobei
Students at Ruiyobei Primary School
Students at Ruiyobei Primary School

Because of supporters like you, Hopeful Africa has made tremendous educational impacts in the Kenya. Through continuous investment over the last eight years, totaling over $100,000, here are a fewof the impacts Hopeful Africa has made:

  • Reduce student to teacher ratios. Through provision of additional teachers through our teacher support program, Hopeful Africa has reduced the student to teacher ratio from 39.8 to 29.8 in partner schools.
  • Increase district rankings based on improved test scores.
    • There has been a 72.1 percent improvement in district ranking at Ogilgei Secondary school, who moved from 29th to 10th in the district out of 42 schools. These are the students who were beneficiaries of Hopeful Africa’s investment at Ogilgei Primary School over the years, and are now showing their advancement at the secondary level.
    • Ogilgei Primary School has also seen a 66.67 percent increase in district ranking, moving from 6th to 2nd out of 12 schools.
    • Kirobon Primary School has achieved a 28.57 percent improvement in district ranking (now 2nd out of 14 schools).
  • Increase enrollment rates. Among the seven partner schools, on average there has been a 38.5 percent increase in enrollment.

Hopeful Africa is truly thankful and encouraged by the impact made thus far. This would all not be possible if it weren’t for supporters like you. You have provided  the resources and means to touch the lives of over 3,000 students in Kenya. To capture the impacts of your support, here’s a quote from one of the students we sponsor:

“I remember one time I was sent home for not being able to pay school fees. But now there is a hope in life.” - Edwin

For a detailed look at the impact Hopeful Africa and its donors have made on Kenyan education, view the full 2015 Impact Assessment Report. Click here for a copy of the report.

For supporters in the Greater Des Moines area, come join Hopeful Africa for the annual Hope Night celebration on Saturday, April 9. During the event you will learn in detail the impact made so far and garner support for future investments. Learn more about the event>

Thank you,

-The Hopeful Africa Team

Students at Kondamet Primary School
Students at Kondamet Primary School
Friends and supporters at Hope Night 2015
Friends and supporters at Hope Night 2015
 

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Organization Information

Hopeful Africa

Location: Urbandale, IA - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @Hope4Africa
Hopeful Africa
Moses Bomett
Project Leader:
Moses Bomett
Founder
Urbandale, IA United States

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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