EduNations Microfinance Limited Donates Solar to EduNations Inc.
EduNations Microfinance (EMF) Limited was established in 2018 with the goal of promoting economic growth and self-sufficiency in the Northern provinces of Sierra Leone by providing microloans to small and medium enterprises. In addition to providing loans, EMF is committed to donating a majority of its proceeds back to EduNations schools to support our educational programs.
In 2019 and 2020, EMF donated a sum of $14,000 to provide school supplies and uniforms to students at our schools. This year, we are pleased to announce that EMF donated $12,000 to EduNations to provide solar lights in the village of Rokassa. This project will provide lighting in the new dormitories, the school building, classrooms, and the new church in Rokassa. This is a huge step in the development of the community because now students will be able to study in the evenings in the comfort of their own dormitories. These lights will also provide opportunities for tutoring, church activities and more in the evenings.
We are thankful to EduNations Microfinance Limited for its continual support of EduNations and we look forward to seeing how this partnership will continue for the good of Sierra Leone.
EduNations Golf Outing Raises $42,000!
EduNations hosted its third annual golf outing on Monday, September 20 at Avalon Golf and Country Club in Sharon, PA. It was a beautiful day as 102 golfers joined us that morning to participate in this year’s scramble. After a brief welcome and a delicious lunch served by Meat Man BBQ, the golfers headed out on the green to enjoy a friendly competition, which was played in “best ball” format. Congratulations to Matt Kaltenberger, Chris McLauglin, Dave Smith, and Chris Ware from Grace Community Church in Cranberry, PA who took first place this year!
Following the afternoon of golf, nearly 170 guests joined us for a banquet dinner. We were thrilled to be able to host the dinner again since last year we were unable to have it due to COVID restrictions. In addition to dinner, attendees were able to take part in our week-long online silent auction that evening. This year, there were over 60 items available for bidding — everything from week-long getaways to sports memorabilia and themed baskets. Since all bidding was online, guests who were not able to attend golf or dinner that evening were still able to participate in the silent auction.
We were grateful for the opportunity to share about our work in Sierra Leone following dinner. In 2019 at our first golf outing, we “Raised the Roof” on the Senior Secondary School, which completed the construction of our first-ever senior high boarding school in Rokassa. At last year’s outing, our goal was to “Send Them to School” and provide room and board for our first class of high school students who would be attending the Senior Secondary School. The goal of this year’s golf outing was to “Send More to School” and provide room and board for our second class of students entering the Senior Secondary Boarding School in Rokassa. In addition to receiving a free and quality high school education, our boarding students are housed in dormitories and provided three meals each day.
Thanks to all of you who supported and participated in this year’s golf outing, we raised $42,000 — a $10,000 increase from last year’s fundraiser! We are so grateful for all of you who helped to make this happen. Whether you joined us for golf or dinner, donated an item to the silent auction, purchased a sponsorship, volunteered, or donated, we are so grateful.
Because of YOU, 260 students are attending EduNations Senior Secondary Boarding School in Rokassa this year!
New Teachers’ Quarters Constructed in Mapainda
Over the past few months, EduNations built housing in the village of Mapainda for our teachers. A key part of offering quality education is employing educated and qualified teachers at our schools. EduNations is blessed to have some of the best teachers throughout the country who have willingly left their homes to come teach in the remote communities of Sierra Leone.
The move that many of our teachers make can often be a challenge, as many of them have previously lived in large towns and cities. When many of our teachers first move to the remote communities, they struggle to find permanent accommodations due to the lack of available space throughout the community. Many have had to temporarily live with the pastor in the village, with other community members or teachers, or in other provisional housing. Some of them have even found housing outside of the village and therefore have had to walk 1-2 miles each day to get to their classrooms.
It is for this reason that EduNations constructed living quarters for EduNations teachers in the village of Mapainda. The new building offers 10 apartments for our staff, with each apartment featuring a bedroom, parlor, and a bathroom. We hope that this apartment not only provides housing, but also fosters a close-knit community among our Mapainda teachers.
EduNations Hires New Education Secretary!
Crucial to the successful operation of our schools in Sierra Leone is the Education Secretary position, who oversees the curriculum and programs of all of the schools and acts as the liaison between our schools and the Sierra Leone government. Over the past several years, this position was filled by Reverend Hassan Koroma, who has done a fantastic job and greatly contributed to the success of our schools. As Rev. Hassan nears retirement, he decided to step back from his role as Education Secretary and take on the role of Principal of EduNations’ new Senior Secondary Boarding School.
Over the summer, EduNations took on the task of screening and interviewing candidates to fill this important role before the school year started up. After much thoughtful consideration, we were thrilled to offer the position to EduNations’ own Michael Turay, who previously served as the Principal of the Fintonia Junior Secondary School.
Michael Turay has worked with us since 2018, when we initially connected with him through a group called the Sierra Leone Fellowship of Evangelical Students. Michael was finishing up his university studies and had applied to be a teacher at our school. After a few interviews, we offered him a position as a mathematics and basic electronics teacher in Fintonia. Though it required Michael to relocate to a community far away from everything he knew, Michael accepted and happily began his career with us.
Michael Turay wasted no time in making a difference in Fintonia. He was quickly promoted to Principal of the Junior Secondary School due to his drive and commitment to the students and the village as a whole. By the end of his time as JSS Principal, Michael Turay had helped to make Fintonia JSS very competitive among the other schools in their district. One year, they even scored second highest in the Basic Education Certificate Exams (BECE) throughout the whole entire country of Sierra Leone!
EduNations is excited to have Michael Turay as our new Education Secretary. We know that he is committed to the mission of the organization and will work hard to continue to make a difference in Sierra Leone.
Resilience of EduNations Orphans
The Ebola epidemic of 2014-2016 hit Sierra Leone hard, plaguing thousands of people throughout the nation. This pandemic left thousands of orphans throughout the country, and after the pandemic ended, the government and their partner organizations provided support and aid to many orphans.
As a leading organization complementing the government of Sierra Leone in the education sector, EduNations reached out to some of the remote communities and started caring for about 100 orphans, providing them with food, housing, and free education at our schools.
To this day, EduNations still supports many orphans who are attending our schools, providing them with free education and learning materials, and checking in on them from time to time. Though these orphans are being cared for, they still face many challenges. Many of them now live with extended family members who also have their own children to provide for, leaving them financially stretched due to limited resources.
Some of the orphans that EduNations cares for are now students at the Senior Secondary Boarding School, where they have said they feel very cared for and supported. We are thankful for our Psycho-social Coordinator who goes out of her way to check in on each of our orphaned students and support them in various ways. We greatly value your continued prayers for these students, who have already overcome so much and continue to face obstacles.
Save the Date for our Benefit Concert!
We are excited to announce that Sandra McCracken will be performing at this year’s benefit concert! The performance will be held on December 3 at 7:00 PM in the Memorial Park Evangelical Presbyterian Church Sanctuary. Stay tuned for more information about how you can register for your free tickets.