A Digital Drive for 900 Out-of-School Children Trapped in Conflict in Cameroon
Education in the two English-speaking regions of Cameroon was disrupted in 2016, when a teachers’ strike morphed into armed conflict, now featuring the kidnapping and killing of teachers and schoolchildren. In 2017, political actors demanding independence for the two regions took over the strike and declared an indefinite suspension of schools across the two regions.
Suddenly, we found ourselves the only source of learning for thousands of children idled by the conflict. The Nascent/McGovern Dole Mobile Libraries, which we had initially designed as an after-school and holiday activity, was rolled out in March 2017. Starved of access to their classrooms and teachers, students took to the program with great enthusiasm, with high participation of girls in the program.
We currently serve 43,000 school-age children via community reading groups in their remote villages, transporting books by motorcycle or headload and navigating between separatist and government forces. About 700,000 of other out-of-school children have not touched a book since September 2017.
Goal: 300 e-Readers
Solar-powered e-readers, an innovation introduced into the literacy program as a pilot, have become the great revelation of this turbulent period. Our budget allowed us to acquire only 50 of these devices to pilot in 10 schools, rotating each device among three students. Each device contains 100 age and grade-appropriate books and various teaching aids, which proved so effective that teachers, students, and parents are clamoring for more. With most rural schools closed, these e-readers are the only means children can access any educational media.
We intend to raise $15,000 to procure 300 e-readers to help 900 out-of-school children to catch up with their peers in more peaceful parts of the country.
At just $50 per device, this will be the best value-for-money present you can give a child this giving season. Please tell your friends. Tell your children, who I think will immediately understand the importance of an e-reader for children who don’t have the same access to educational tools.
On behalf of the staff, management of Nascent and grateful beneficiaries, we wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
Nascent Solutions Inc. is a humanitarian and development organization dedicated to creating a self-reliant poverty-free Africa. Our programs have impacted the lives of over 10 million children, women, and men. Nascent Solutions Inc. is a Tax Exempt, 501C3 Organization.
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