On Sept. 20, 2021 in-person classes began in the rural community of Baitoa, but due to financial setbacks caused by covid-19, many families found themselves unable to purchase all the supplies needed in order to send their children back to school. It costs more than $75 just to outfit one student with everything they need, and most households have at least 3 school-aged kids. A typical family in Baitoa earns barely $200 per month, which is barely enough to cover food expenses.
Thanks to our network of 68 Community Health Leaders, Project Hearts has strong ties to the various neighborhoods throughout Baitoa. This means we can easily identify which students are most vulnerable to dropping out of school because they don't have the materials they need to return to classes.
Education is the best way to exchange the cycle of poverty for a cycle of empowerment, and enabling youth to stay in school is a simple way to encourage that transformation. With more students attending classes, Baitoa will have fewer idol residents, fewer teen pregnancies, less drug use, and more informed youth who will be capable of addressing the problems faced by their communities.