Standing in front of her family’s kitchen, she hid her face at first.
Only because she was shy. After a gentle glance from her mother, this sweet girl showed her beautiful face.
Our jeep was parked in her village in the morning. On a school day.
Why wasn’t she in school?
I’m not sure.
Pamela wasn’t in school either. I had a chance to ask the preschool teacher in Attir why Pamela, a baby on her back, wasn’t at school the other day when Cullen and I were there.
“Normally she is, but today she has to work. Her next school fee is due, and her mother doesn’t have the money.” So Pamela, her tiny sister on her back, had spent the day making and collecting charcoal to sell in the village to get her school fee.
How much does it cost to go to school in our villages here in central Kenya?
300 Shillings a term. Which is about $1 a month.
In many of these villages, there isn’t much at home.
(This is a modest home in the village of Gambella.)
At school, the kids learn. Are together with a caring, responsible adult and their peers.
And of course there is lunch! Every day. Included in the cost of their school fee. Many times, its the only meal these children eat all day.
The day we visited, we brought cookies and suckers. Because. Kids!
These are the students.
But there are so, so, so many more children in each village who aren’t able to attend school. There are 250 at least in Attir alone!
The answer seems simple: Let’s all just give $1 a month ($10 a year, since there is a break with no school around December.) to help these kids go to school!
It’s complicated, though. I don’t purport to have all the answers by any means, but the many trips I’ve made to Africa and the amazing people much smarter than me I’ve worked with (Like Jeff Power of Global Hope Network International!) have taught me it’s about sustainability.
Development. Self sufficiency. Long term solutions. The villages standing on their own, taking responsibility.
Our job isn’t just to visit, giving high fives and suckers. It’s not to build houses or dig wells. And the best way to help is not to dump thousands of dollars of aid into an area and walk away.
Global Hope believes in relationships. Partnering. Empowerment.
That’s why we gave the goats. And it’s why we want to help with schooling. But we want to help by empowering the parents to create income so they can send their children to school.
This is where you can come in. In a big way.
Would you donate $1 a month to Global Hope? $2 a month? $20 a month? (To make the donation recurring, you’ll need to be on a computer or click view desktop version from your mobile.)
The money will go to empowering the adults in Gambella, Ola Nagele, Shambani, Attir and more to learn trades so they can support their families!
There is also a sewing teacher and classes at the Empowerment Center, helping Merry from Attir and more escape prostitution and instead earn money. Merry, a young teen, now provides for her uncle’s children to attend school!
With our donations, the Center can grow. Sewing, hair braiding, motorbike taxis, milk goat raising, more charcoal making and beyond are viable trades we are wanting to teach.
I will keep track of the donors here:
If when we get to 1,000 spots of $1 a month (Feel free to take up a few spots! Maybe everyone in your family can do $1 a month?), I will shave my head.
I tell you what, when we get to 1,000 $1 spots a month, I’ll commit to donating $1000 extra each month from my family.
And want to come back and visit our villages with me? The next trips will likely be in March and/or August. Let me know!
*Put “Empowerment Center” in the “notes” section when you donate. And also, be sure to message me and let me know you donated so I can get you on our list! Heck, let me know you want a spot and I’ll write you down even for committing and you can set up the payment when you have a chance.