For untold thousands of children in Chad, just getting clean water to drink and food to eat is a struggle, particularly for orphans and the poorest of the poor in this destitute country – and the idea of going to school is beyond the realm of possibility.
But thanks to the supporters of Bread and Water for Africa® hundreds of Chadian boys and girls not only have their school fees paid through a tuition assistance program operated by our partner Hope Services, they are also provided the required uniforms. The costs for their examination fees are also covered.
For us and our partners at Hope Services, the mission of educating children is one in the same: “Giving the underprivileged the same opportunities to be educated like others, and leading poor children into established self-reliant individuals,” states director Esther Ndichafah.
In sub-Saharan Africa, roughly 40 percent of children will not spend even one day in a school classroom, amounting to untold millions who will never learn to read or write or do more than the most basic math.
Without even an elementary school education, they will never be able to build better lives for themselves dooming future generations to repeat the cycle of poverty that has entrenched lives of their parents.
Many of these children live in the sub-Saharan African countries of Kenya, Sierra Leone, Cameroon, Chad, Zambia and Zimbabwe where thanks to the supporters of Bread and Water for Africa®, we are able to fund our school fee program enabling them to realize their greatest dream of going to school, providing them hope for a brighter future.
For 20 years, we have been partnering with our local partners in those countries to provide an education for the orphaned and impoverished children in our belief that literacy and education is the key not only to their future but to the future of the entire continent.
Do the math: 567 boxes + one 40-foot shipping container holding 35,000 pounds of books = 50,000 Ugandan school children in 150 rural schools given the opportunity to not only learn to read, but also develop a lifelong love of reading and learning.
This summer, thanks to our supporters, we were able to do just that. Through our partnership with Books for Africa and Bega kwa Bega (BkB) (Shoulder to Shoulder) for Uganda Orphans, these 50,000 children will have access to more than 20,000 books, including picture and story books for the youngest, and science, math, social studies, health and art textbooks for the older students.
“Most children find it difficult to learn and master reading skills in English due to a lack of books,” says BKB Founder and Director Conche McGarr, who added that the storybooks with colorful pictures will attract young readers “to develop an interest in reading at an early age.”
Conche also noted that the books will benefit the teachers as well who will be coached on how to use the books to the help their students improve their literacy in a country where half the adult population is illiterate.
“Our schools rarely get such an opportunity,” she told us. “Therefore, this donation will be unforgettable in the lives of the beneficiaries and who will be forever grateful for this kindness.”
The mission of our partner in Cameroon, Hope Services, is “To build up the capacity of our beneficiaries through the provision of skills that can enable them to be self-reliant thereby avoiding dependency syndrome.”
In sum, to provide children with the resources they need to attend school and become successful adults.
And thanks to our supporters, and our partners throughout Africa such as Hope Services, that’s exactly what we have been doing for 20 years.
Through our school fees assistance program, Hope Services is able to do more than provide scholarships for hundreds of primary and elementary students – more than 4,500 orphans in 20 years – but also pay for the essential items they need including the mandatory school uniforms, books, exam fees, school bags and supplies, and more.
As Hope Services director Esther Ndichafah puts it, the objective is to give “the underprivileged the same opportunities to be educated like others…to be successful and fulfilled like others.”
In the thousands of Cameroonian children, Esther has been able to assist through our school fees assistance program thanks to people like you, Blandine is among those who stand out.
Blandine was selected by Esther for tuition assistance despite being visually impaired, which for most destitute children like her would have meant a miserable life, a day-to-day struggle for survival.
But Esther could see beyond that in Blandine – a smart young partially blind woman seeing a bright future for herself.
Blandine excelled in secondary school, but all the while wondered what happens after she graduates. Even with a high school degree, there is no way she could even begin to earn the money she would need to realize her dream of attending college.
For Esther, there was no one more deserving of a college education than Blandine, and she turned to us. And thanks to our supporters, for the first (and so far only) time, we provided tuition assistance to a college student.
“She has experienced a great feeling of fulfillment because she has no one to count on,” Esther told us when Blandine started classes at the University of Bameda a few years ago. “The funds made all the difference.”
And she hasn’t let us down.
“Our first university beneficiary of our annual school program for vulnerable children rounded off this year,” Esther reported recently.
As for Blandine, with her dream realized, “Today, I can boast of an education.”
This year, we are helping to provide educations for thousands of orphaned and destitute African children in Cameroon, Kenya, Sierra Leone, Zambia and Zimbabwe, but we need your help to assist even more realize their own dream of attending school.
Your gift of $25, $50, $100 or more goes a long way in countries where it only costs a few hundred dollars a year to help lift a deserving child out of a life of poverty and despair.
Please give the gift of an education today.
What would you choose: Safe Water or an Education?
In most villages in Sierra Leone, school-age girls and boys walk up to five miles a day to fetch water for their families. By the time they get back home they are physically exhausted from carrying 40-pound jugs of water on their heads. To make matters worse, many of these children are unable to attend school regularly because they waste so much time just carrying water.
Imagine the terrible choice faced today by their mothers – water or an education for their children!
But, with assistance from Bread and Water for Africa®, several communities are making progress. There is hope. A little goes a long way and we hope to raise $15,000 by the end of this month to provide fresh water for years to come to thousands of grateful families – and children who will be in the classroom getting an education instead of doing a mindless chore.
“One day I will be Dr. Daniel Kabweza,” says Daniel, who thanks to our supporters was able to not just attend school, but excel. He is now set to graduate and looks forward to going to university to study medicine.
Daniel is one of 58 primary and high school students in Zimbabwe who has benefited from our school fee assistance program for the past several years.As explained by our Executive Director Bethelhem Tessema, once a child is accepted into the program, we feel a duty to fund their education through high school graduation. “Once we start paying, we continue,” says Beth.
The future wasn’t always so bright for Daniel
“I lost my parents when I was very young and lived in the villages with my grandparents and some family members,” he told us. “Life for me and my sister was very hard in the hands of some relatives.”
And while some might give up all hope and believe there is no future for them, Daniel did not.
He did not know how it would happen, but he had faith – a faith that was realized through the generosity of our supporters and the love and dedication provided to him by our partner there, Margaret Makambira, founder and director of the Shinga Development Trust.
While it is because of our supporters that we are able to provide the funding for our school fee assistance program, it is Margaret who is able to spot those “diamonds in the rough” such as Daniel and enable them to reach their full potential – oftentimes more than they even realize for themselves.
His dream is to become a doctor.
“I had a dream to become educated and become a medical doctor one day, but I did not know how this was going to be without a reliable source of funding until my friends took me to a Shinga program where I was selected to benefit from your education funding,” Daniel told us.
“This made me work harder at school and this year I finished high school,” he added. “I know I will pass and qualify for university. Thank you for your kindness and love. I have hope for a very bright future. God bless you all.”
Our supporters made Daniel’s story possible.
And thanks to our supporters, hundreds of students just like Daniel have the opportunity not only to attend school but to successfully complete their education every year.