Skype To Africa! With Education Is Power


(upbeat music) – Hi. (All) – Hi. – Um, so, this is Spencer Middle School and um, we’re trying to help Education is Power. – Education is power is an NGO with a mandate to improve access to effective education for Africa’s future leaders. In North America we assume that education is a right and that it’s basically free. In Kenya and Tanzania, it’s a different story. A child’s parents has to pay for them to go to primary school. High school can cost $300-$400 per year where the average salary is only $2 per day. Education is Power is paying school fees directly to the schools so that that financial barrier is removed. Students are able to go to school and we also have major engagement with the parents of the students, making sure that they are committed to seeing that their kids succeed in going to school. We are also providing teachers with opportunities to gain the training they need to be a more effective teacher in the classroom. Education is Power does a lot more as we believe in the importance of connecting East African students with North American students and we do this through Skype. (fast percussive music) – Basically got assigned a project where you take photos like where you sleep, what you had for dinner last night, favorite activity. – This is my favorite hangout spot. It’s called Starbucks. – Then Kenyan students show us their photos they took. – That is Monica’s bedroom. – And the chair and the table, that is where I do my studies from. – There was a lot of wow-ing. – And this is a picture of our classroom. – Wow! (laughing) – Rather than looking at that map on the classroom wall, you’re able to see these kids from where those countries are and ask them questions about what it’s like to live there. – When does your school start? – It starts at 6:45. – In the morning? – One student, I saw the bedroom. He had a double-decker bed. – They were like, “Woah!” – Maybe I could never think that such a little kid could have such a bedroom. – What I really enjoyed seeing was the reactions of my students. Seeing their faces and them going, “What’s that?” Or like, “Oh! I see.” It was just, it was incredible, it was amazing. – I mean, they ate mashed potatoes, I mean we eat mashed potatoes here. – So when I participate in this video chat, it helps to interact with people whom you have never met before. – So you can learn about what’s going on on the other side of the world. (sad piano music) – I would not have been in school anywhere. I would have been employed as a house girl. Even I could also be married somewhere. If Education is Power is not there because my grandfather and mother don’t have that capability of paying school fees towards attending school. – Less than half of students that start in primary school are able to actually able to finish with a high school education. So you can see that there is an amazing need to help. (hopeful music) I was blown away by how important school was to people in Kenya and Tanzania while I was spending time there and I got to know people and really wanted to help certain individuals and then it spawned from there. Since we started in 2008, we’ve been largely a volunteer organization. We’re able to put all of our proceeds towards where it counts on the ground. By the end of 2014, Education is Power was supporting 35 students to high school and post-secondary institutions and now in 2017 we’re supporting 100 students and we want to continue to grow. That is what our focus is. (upbeat music) – We had a Skype call with a bunch of Kenyan students in Kenya and they showed us pictures of their life and we showed them some of ours. – Hello everyone. As you can see there is a lantern lamp. That’s what we use for lighting our homes. – My whole life I’ve just had a light switch and it’s just so easy. – They would walk to a river to get water and carry 20 liters back. It’s kind of shocking maybe, to see the stark contrast between our two lives, even though as we’re talking it seems we aren’t that different. We do a lot of the same activities, play a lot of the same sports and instruments. – Better attitude than I have. They were really looking forward to school. They wanted to learn, they’re more passionate. I guess because they have to work for it, they realize the value more than a lot of people in Canada do I guess. – Education is Power has been helping these students and we hope that as time goes by, we’ll be able to raise such funds to help our students attain their educational achievements in Kenya. – If you would like to support Education is Power, every bit helps whether it’s $5, $10, $15, or whatever is reasonable for you to donate. All of the proceeds will go directly to provide more education opportunities in East Africa. – I think that you should support Education is Power because it’s a super important cause and you can actually see the effects of the help that you give. It made me feel super happy that I donated to Education is Power. I think that you should donate. (upbeat music)

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