We are pleased to have received a grant from the Giving Hope Network at their annual gala last night. This grant will enable EFH to complete the first phase of the Three Communities Primary School project in Rogbantama, Sierra Leone. Many thanks to Michael Szot and the GHN Board for making this possible.
On Saturday, December 15, 2013, EFH broke ground on the Three Communities Primary School project. It was very exciting to see the elders, men, women, and children who showed up and participated in this ground-breaking event—a total community effort. The women fetched and carried water and the men were actively involved in mixing and carrying concrete, sticks, stones, and cement, and laying out the foundation, while the elders assisted in many ways—preparing food and serving drinking water to the workers.
The Three Communities residents were very excited and hopeful and look forward to the completion of their first-ever primary school to give their children the ability to read and write and thus chart their own destiny.
EFH continues to support the Tumba Primary School, its first constructed school. There has been an increase in enrollment since the school was completed, and children from surrounding villages also attend the school.
On Thursday, December 12, 2013, EFH donated sport packs each containing a dictionary, notebooks, and pencils to the 68 pupils and 3 teachers of the Tumba Primary School. The donation was well received and appreciated by the community. The EFH team informed the community elders that they need to continue to support the school and the teachers.
The National School for the Deaf was founded in 1965 by the Sierra Leone Society for the Deaf. It is a voluntary and non-governmental organization. This organization depends mainly on charity and has little support from the government. The school is non-residential and is located at Wilkinson Road .
The aims and objectives of the school are to help the deaf children be part of the society in which they live and to have as normal a life as possible within the community, thereby encouraging them to use whatever little hearing they have in order to acquire language and education and have a vocation.
The school is a nonresidential coeducational special day school and includes preschool to class six as well as a small vocational workshop for children who do not excel academically. Children are taught all subjects as in a regular school but with Sign Language and Speech included to meet their challenging needs. After 2 years of class six work, they take the National Primary School Examination and go to the mainstream school to continue their secondary education (the teachers in the mainstream schools usually do not have expertise in teaching deaf children).
In Sierra Leone, deafness is one of the disabilities that is usually ignored or, rather, to which little or no attention is paid, while other disabilities are given maximum attention. Deafness in most cases is associated with other physical disabilities like lack of speech, brain injury, etc. Due to the invisibility of this disability, it is referred to as the unseen handicap, thus it creates less attention and interest, especially in Sierra Leone society. Most of the children are from poor homes and find themselves plagued with many problems over the years.
The National School for the Deaf is faced with many challenges including a lack of school materials. On Tuesday, December 11, 2013, EFH donated 50 sport packs, each containing a dictionary, notebooks, and pencils, to girls at the National School for the Deaf. The staff and girls were very grateful and appreciative of the donation and kindly asked the EFH team to consider them for future donations.
EFH continues its partnership with the Sierra Leone Library Board (SLLB). On December 3, 2013, EFH presented the dictionaries donated by the Dictionary Project as well as fiction and nonfiction books to the Chief Librarian of the Sierra Leone Library, Mr. Salieu Turay, to seven primary schools, and to the Peace Corps. The SLLB will distribute these dictionaries to libraries across the country, the Peace Corps will give the dictionaries to their volunteers to be used in the various schools where they teach, and the primary schools will make these dictionaries accessible to their pupils.
In addition, the Chief Librarian gave the EFH management team a tour of the central library. The central library is undergoing major improvements—installation of air conditioning and localized WiFi, repainting of the entire structure, digital archiving of publications, and installation of new furniture. The EFH team was very pleased with the continuous improvement of the central library and of libraries across the country and pledged to continue its partnership and support of SLLB initiatives and projects.
SLANGO is the governing body of all Non-Governmental Organizations in Sierra Leone, and EFH has fulfilled all the registration requirements and is now a registered and certified nonprofit organization in Sierra Leone. Therefore, EFH is certified to perform work in health and educational sectors in Sierra Leone.
On December 2, 2013, the EFH management team presented its 2012 annual report and donated dictionaries to the Director of SLANGO, Ms. Shellac Davies, at their headquarters in Tenbegh Town, Freetown.
On November 26, 2013, the Education for Hope (EFH) management team presented its 2012 annual report to the Hon. Osmond Hanciles, Deputy Minister 1, Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology (MEST), Sierra Leone. After the presentation, the EFH team had a meaningful discussion with the Minister and will be working closely with MEST as we develop and implement programs across the country.
Thank you for joining us for a fun night of fundraising and excitement at Policy Restaurant and Lounge in Washington, DC – Come Build with Us! The funds will go towards the construction of the Gbantama Primary School, in Sierra Leone.
The event was a success; we met our fundraising goal for the night. Many thanks for your kind donations and support. People such as you make it possible for us to continue to create pathways out of poverty through education.
If you were unable to attend the event, and would like to make a donation, please do so on our website's secure online donation platform (Paypal) or you could mail your donation to Education for Hope, P.O. Box 6184, Woodbridge, VA 22193. Education for Hope is a registered 501(c)(3) charity and all donations are tax-deductible.
Thanks again for your support of our effort to give hope and to help the children of Sierra Leone realize their dreams and God’s given potential.
The donated dictionaries and school supplies are en route to Sierra Leone.
Education for Hope, Sierra Leone, will donate a majority of the dictionaries to the Sierra Leone Library Board to be distributed to libraries across the country, making them easily accessible to all. The school supplies will be distributed to primary school children of various schools.
Many thank yous to our donors and supporters for your continued support of our mission. Individuals like you make it possible to give to the children of sub-Saharan Africa.
Thank you so much for your generous donation of 40 cases (960 dictionaries) of student dictionaries to Education for Hope. These dictionaries will be distributed to the Tumba primary school children and the Sierra Library Board to be placed in the children sections of libraries across Sierra Leone. THEY ARE NOT FOR SALE.
Lack of educational opportunity is the primary cause of stagnant development and increased poverty within underdeveloped African nations. While many regions of the world are susceptible to hard times, children in Africa are at high risk for continued poverty and less educational opportunities; therefore, they are our organization's primary focus.
The Dictionary Project’s donation will support hundreds of local children in Sierra Leone and help them to harness the power of knowledge and improve literacy and communication skills. With the generous support of the Dictionary Project, we will be able to help many of these children learn to read books and also help them work toward a brighter future.
Thank you again, and we hope for your continued support.