A couple of weeks ago I lead an inspirational assembly for Lugwardine primary school. This kick-started their ‘Path out of Poverty’ project, exploring some of the obstacles many children face when trying to get to school in the developing world. For those living in poverty there’s a lot more to it than jumping on the school bus, and catching nasty diseases like malaria can, at best, keep you off school for weeks. Many of these obstacles are easily overcome with simple solutions like a £3 mosquito net. Other domestic responsibilities like collecting firewood and water help keep around 61 million children (mainly girls) living in Sub-Sahara Africa out of school every single day.
Concern Universal helps combat these challenges in Malawi by providing energy efficient stoves (£2.50), community water pumps (£14 per person) clean toilets (£5) drought resistant seeds (£10) goats (£20) and mosquito nets (£3). It costs just £54.50 to help provide families with the support they need to save time, earn money, stay healthy and send their children to school.
After the assembly pupils got busy thinking about how they can help get children on the path out of poverty, and three days later it was their time to take centre stage. I sat with the parents to see their presentations which ranged from colourful ‘help all children get to school’ posters to thoughtful poems. I particularly enjoyed a piece on goats which ended with a comedy ‘baa-ing’ th-aa-aa-aa-n-k- y-o-u-u-u-u! To close the assembly, pupils read out the following poem before launching their half term fundraising challenge in which they will be rallying round for spare change to put in their handmade piggy banks decorated with the theme of… you guessed it, education.
Concern Universal is helping children get to school
Not many children in Africa have clean water to drink
I am going to help raise money to give children the chance to go to school
Very few children have mosquito nets so they can get ill from malaria
Everyone can help prevent that by collecting spare coins
Regularly children have to collect firewood for their family
Some get ill from lack of toilets in their home
All children want the chance to learn to get them out of poverty
Let’s try to help them have a better life
Let’s help even more children get the education they deserve, please get in touch if your school would like to launch their own Path out of Poverty challenge or if you have any other great fundraising ideas. Huge thanks to the staff and teachers at Lugwardine Primary School, we look forward to hearing how much they managed to raise!