Africa is a big continent with over 1 billion people and 54 countries. Each of these countries has numerous ethnic groups that can vary greatly in terms of language, history, culture, etc. In 2000, the United Nations agreed on the Millennium Development Goals, which are to be met by 2015. One of these goals is to ensure that, by 2015, children everywhere, boys and girls alike, will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling. While great strides have been made, many countries in Africa are still not on track to meet this goal.
We want to become irrelevant. Education will give the next generation the tools to fight poverty, stabilize nations, and conquer diseases such as HIV/AIDS and malaria – rendering aid from abroad unnecessary. School also offers children a safe environment, with support, supervision and socialization while potentially providing children with life-saving vaccines, fresh water and nutrient supplementation.
Ignorance leads to poverty and disease, which fosters the instability seen in so many African countries today. This instability leads to poor infrastructure and therefore a lack of quality education. In several cases it leads to war, crime and insecurity. It is a vicious cycle that only quality education can break.
The Education Situation in Kenya
In 2002, a new Kenyan government, under President Mwai Kibaki, came to power. It can be argued that Kibaki won the majority of the votes by promising to eliminate school fees in the primary level, providing free primary education for all students in Kenya. However, with this great idea came great consequences; the government did not take the time to add enough facilities, hire more teachers or acquire more school supplies. This led to a high level of school enrollment, with some places experiencing an increase of 94%. This caused the quality of education to decline all over the country in public schools.
We believe that simply achieving universal education will not produce the positive results that are expected in Africa. It is not just any education but quality education that makes the difference. This is where we come in. In 2009 through a visit to Kenya by our founder Moses Bomett we started to work with three public schools in the outskirts of Nakuru, Kenya. These three schools are located in poor, rural areas where most of the people are peasant farmers leaving on less than a dollar a day. Therefore, it is not feasible for the local communities to sustain a sufficient level of quality education for the local schools. We stress the concept of partnership – partnership and dialogue with the schools we help, the students we sponsor, and the communities we benefit. No sustainable solutions can be imposed on the people of Africa – they must be grown in Africa. We work as partners with these schools, communicating with them to discover their greatest problems, and then finding ways to implement the solutions. We make sure that each program is plausible and sustainable at the local level.