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CHILDREN

MicroEDU

To provide a platform of education opportunities for children who lack access to education through online to solve setbacks of onsite volunteering, and also a systematic and organised database of inno

1. Project summary
Summary: 

MicroEDU is an effort to engage all educators and learners through technology and, most importantly, to offer more learning opportunities to children who lack such opportunities (such as those from rural areas). MicroEDU provides a systematic database of educational games, pre-recorded lessons, slides, videos submitted by innovative teachers and students from all over the world. This makes it easy and convenient for people to learn and share. Teachers have the opportunity to share their innovative ideas in engaging students in learning while all students, including children who lack learning opportunities, have access to these education resources as well.

This is because we will be providing technology gadgets and internet access to these children who lack learning opportunities. Along with teacher and student volunteers who will be appreciated and honoured with certificates of recognition, we will also help prepare these children to take recognised exams in their respective countries.

As each submission by innovative teachers or students reach a certain quality and rating, or for each time somebody scored full mark for the ‘featured educational game’ , MicroEDU will receive a certain amount of funding from Corporate Sponsors, and we will provide them with great advertisement and publicity services.

We also provide an opportunity for people from rural areas to market their products (handicraft etc.) online. This is also a means of fair trade (as they are frequently exploited by middleman when selling their products) and to develop entrepreneurial skills among these people. Individuals and small enterprises can also support us through purchasing these products. These small enterprises will receive publicity as well. Thus, we can ensure the sustainability of our project and continue to help more children from other parts of the world to have more learning opportunities.

We believe that education is a means to eradicate poverty. With technology, we shall build a bridge to reach out to children who lack learning opportunities, while connecting all educators and learners.

2. Country (City / Region)
State: 
Philippines
City: 
Philippines/Malaysia
3. Company/organization/institute presenting the project
Organization: 
MicroEDU
4. Type of organization
Select type: 
School
5. Project coordinator
Name and Surname: 
Soo Jin Yun
E-Mail: 
jasmines0405@gmail.com
7. Please select the category in which you candidate your project
Youth Education Project. Select Project Users by age: 
Up to 18 years
Helping youth step in the job market: 
Helping youth step in the job market
Creativity and Social Innovation: 
Creativity and Social Innovation
8. How long has your project been running?
From: 
31/12/2008
9. Targets and Elements of Innovation
Please explain the targets and the background of your project: 

It all started when 15 students from across the Asia Pacific are selected to attend the 1st Asia Pacific Microsoft Innovative Students’ Forum in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in conjunction with the Teachers’ Conference. Soo Jin Yun, a Malaysian, and Johanna Leibandoy, from Philippines, are partners in this project idea. The project idea is then awarded a 1500-USD micro-grant by Microsoft Corporation. Soo Jin Yun is currently on scholarship for the Sprout e-course to be assisted by TakingITGlobal to make this project a success.

Our mission is to advocate education for all, adopt an equitable use of technology, and work towards poverty eradication. Our vision is that all children and youths will gain education opportunities and be involved in youth participation as well as to benefit from the use of technology, and to have an awareness on fair trade and enterprise.

What does it try to achieve and how: 

We call this the 21st century—an era of globalisation and advancement in technology. To quote Jimmy Carter, “Globalization, as defined by rich people like us, is a very nice thing... you are talking about the Internet, you are talking about cell phones, you are talking about computers. This doesn't affect two-thirds of the people of the world…”

The integration of technology in education is a noble intention, but in reality this will most likely only benefit students who are studying in big cities and prestigious schools. What about those children who do not even have sufficient education opportunities? Be it the urban poor or children from rural areas, many still encounter the lack of access to education due to factors such as daunting journey/inconvenience of transport to school, unable to enroll in schools, lack of teachers etc. Some children do attend school but are highly dependent on the availability of teachers who would want to volunteer at certain times, and this often results in not having regular, frequent and sufficient number of lessons. In addition, they are rarely involved in healthy competitions and exposure to more learning experiences to be able to improve themselves. It is imperative to provide them a situation conducive for effective learning.

On the other hand, we have students who have easy access to technology like computers and the internet. Yet, many of them only use them for addictive games, social networking sites and such. They either lack the initiative or the information to explore the possibility of the role of technology in providing a systematic database of educational resources as well as in youth participation. Some are eager to involve themselves in youth participation but lack opportunities or are unable to commit due to various reasons.

On top of that, we have educators around the world who have devised innovative methods in teaching. While some of them have received recognition of some form, others may have been doing this for a long time and yet they did not receive support from their school/local authorities. Educators today are gradually pioneering the reform of teaching methods to engage students in learning. However, most of these efforts and initiatives are done individually or within a small group of educators. What is needed now is a platform for the exchange of ideas between different communities of educators, the compilation of these ideas, and to share their innovations to benefit more learners instead of just a limited number of their own students. These educators and teachers need a platform that supports their efforts and initiatives too.

Education, technology, youth participation and support for the generation of innovative teachers are the key issues integrated into my project idea. We believe that education is a means to eradicate poverty too. With technology, we shall build a bridge to reach out to children who lack learning opportunities, while connecting and encouraging the involvement of all educators and learners.

Which opportunities/problems does it address to: 

After attending the Asia Pacific Microsoft Teachers’ Conference and Innovative Students’ Forum, we realized that there are many teachers who are seeking innovative methods in teaching, but sometimes not all of them are given the opportunity to showcase their effort and share their ideas to be applied in other schools, communities or even other countries. We want to provide teachers with the opportunity to share and showcase their ideas, as well as students to access these educational resources. Students do not have to search randomly online because we arrange them in a systematic database.

While countries in the Asia Pacific are working towards the MDG of Education for All, and the use of technology in education is given more attention, there are still marginalised communities or children who lack education exposure.

Schools may be built but the lack of human resource for teachers in those areas and/or inconveniences in access (transport etc) to the schools are factors that these children are still being left behind.

In Phillipines, some children only get to attend school for 3 days a week because the place they are living in is too inconvenient for teachers to come in every day.

Besides that, in certain parts of East Malaysia, there have been cases on girls being raped by loggers on the way to school and some students dropped out of school because it takes a long boat ride to reach the school. Other times, some children who did attend school and who are able to communicate in English, ended up making handicraft in their own villages nevertheless.

Intervention is needed for an alternative platform to provide opportunities for these children. In terms of education, we can utilise technology so that helpful teachers/students are able to reach out to these children. This is also a systematic and organised database of resources for all educators and learners. Besides that, it is a platform for them to learn small entrepreneurial skills by doing online selling of handicraft, and avoid going through a middle man.

Please explain what is unique or special in your project: 

Our project is a cross-national project by two people of different nationalities. We start our pilot project in Philippines but look forward to expanding it to other communities in Asia Pacific. Our project idea is also acknowledged by the highly recognized Microsoft Corporation.

Children who lack access to education are usually helped by teachers who volunteer to teach, donations etc. But most of the time, teaching is not done on a regular basis or not as frequent as the normal schooling programme as there may be inconvenience for teachers or volunteers to get transport to the area, the money needed to travel, and most of all the time commitment.

Our project fully utilizes technology to bridge the gap. To solve the inconveniences stated above, we are using technology to bridge the gap. Educators and learners can connect with those children through the internet conveniently.

Our project is built upon the basis of involvement from various stakeholders, professionals, children, youth, corporate support, and anyone in this world who cares. (Details mentioned at section 12.5 of this proposal)

Our project also makes using the internet more meaningful to our stakeholders.

Our project is possible to be done on a long-term basis, and is able to expand as we gradually bring this benefit to more and more communities who need it. It is not only sustainable, it can gradually expand to a regional or international level, and thus widen the range of people who can benefit from our project.

10. Results
How has it improved the participation of professionals, children, youth and other stakeholders: 

The nature of our project requires active participation from various stakeholders.

Professionals, namely teachers or educators, have an opportunity to showcase their ideas at an international level. They can share their innovations and teaching methods to benefit other schools/communities/countries. Many teachers have been working on applications of technology in education but remain unknown to the society and world, and some of them do not receive enough support. They can now also learn from other teachers sharing the same dedication towards technology in education and help one another to improve current innovations.

Children from rural areas or urban poor who lack access to education will now receive an opportunity to learn online when resources are not available. Children can now learn from the online volunteers consisting of teachers and youths and also search for their own resources in our database. As our project expands in the future, these children are able to connect with children from other communities who are in similar situations. Children can also help their parents to market their products (such as indigenous handicraft etc.) at our online store.

Youths have the opportunity to become volunteers who will make an impact to the lives of those children. They can prepare prerecorded lessons/educational games etc or similar innovations like the teachers’ and submit it to our database to benefit the children. This will also benefit their character building and we will award certificates to acknowledge their contributions. Youths play a part in making the environment conducive for learning for all.

As each submission by innovative teachers or students reach a certain quality and rating, or for each time somebody scored full mark for the ‘featured educational game’ , MicroEDU will receive a certain amount of funding from Corporate Sponsors, and we will provide them with great advertisement and publicity services.

Individuals and small enterprises can also support us through purchasing these products. These small enterprises will receive publicity as well. Thus, we can ensure the sustainability of our project and continue to help more children from other parts of the world to have more learning opportunities.

Other stakeholders include Silliman University, Youth Organizations, Teachers Organization, Partner School, Students, Parents, Teachers, Principal, Local Industries, Volunteer Students, Volunteer Teachers, Internet Provider, Computer Shop, School Supplies Shop, Local Corporations, Department of Education, Municipality Mayor, Municipality Councilors, Local Media, Online Media

How does it promote the use of ICT for the educational and cultural development by professionals, children and youth: 

This is being described in the previous sections. Our project is not only relevant, but the core rudiments of it correspond to the promotion of the use of ICT for the educational and cultural development by professionals, children and youth.

Everyone gains personal benefits as well as uses ICT for a good cause.

11. Sustainability
What is the full duration of your project: 
More than 6 years
What is the approximate total budget for your project (in USD): 
Less than 10.000
What is the source of funding for your project: 
Advertising
Is your project economically self sufficient now: 
No
12. Transferability
Has your project been replicated/adapted elsewhere: 
No
What lessons can others learn from your project: 

Youths nowadays tend to complain about not having laptops or sufficient technological gadgets at school but we wish to remind everyone of the children who do not even have the chance to receive sufficient education.

All our stakeholders, educators, professionals, learners, youths, students and people in this society can surely learn a lot. (Details mentioned at the other section).As mentioned, we hope to expand this project to benefit other communities of children who lack education opportunities too.

We are available to help others starting or working on similar projects: 
We are available to help others starting or working on similar projects.
13. Background information
Background: 

It all started when 15 students from across the Asia Pacific are selected to attend the 1st Asia Pacific Microsoft Innovative Students’ Forum in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in conjunction with the Teachers’ Conference. Soo Jin Yun, a Malaysian, and Johanna Leibandoy, from Philippines, are partners in this project idea. The project idea is then awarded a 1500-USD micro-grant by Microsoft Corporation. Soo Jin Yun is currently on scholarship for the Sprout e-course to be assisted by TakingITGlobal to make this project a success.

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Nakuru Learning Center Educational Program for Vulnerable Children

Currently LDK supports 324 orphans and other vulnerable children with their basic needs to enable them reach their full potential.

1. Project summary
Summary: 

In 1998, Three Kenyans - Philip Ndeta (the brains behind the organization), Obed Tsuma and Benta Atieno founded Learning and Development Kenya (LDK) to work with the local communities to address the problems brought about by government’s introduction of cost sharing in the education and health sectors. While outwardly improving the economy of Kenya, these government measures ultimately led to an increase in child labor, high rates of school dropouts, and increased homelessness in children. As Director of the organization, Mr. Ndeta oversees the day to day running of the organization.

At LDK we believe that education is the great equalizer, and by working to ensure that all Kenyans (especially children), have access to quality educational programs, we believe we can dramatically reduce the inequalities caused by extreme poverty. Through teaching a child to read, helping a youth master a computer so she can get a better job, or educating the community about HIV, LDK is working tirelessly to equip the most vulnerable Kenyans with the tools they need to succeed.

Since 1998 and through its education program, LDK has been able to provide support for high education and specialized training in secretarial courses, computer, teaching (both primary and ECD), IT and even tailoring to over 150 young Kenyans who would otherwise not have had a chance to empower their talents and build their future. Though no follow up has been made to establish their current status, we believe that with the qualifications attained through our support they are now employed in the government or private sector or even self-employed and therefore contributing to nation building.

Currently LDK supports 324 needy children in nursery, primary and secondary schools. It further supports 74 orphans with shelter, food, medical care and other basic needs. The orphans live in the home at the Virginia center in Rhonda slums within Nakuru Municipality.

Programs: Education program; HIV/AIDS program; Environmental and Sanitation program; Peace initiative project; Relief activities; Civic education program.

2. Country (City / Region)
State: 
Kenya
City: 
Nakuru, Rift Valley Province
3. Company/organization/institute presenting the project
Organization: 
Learning and Development Kenya
4. Type of organization
Select type: 
School
5. Project coordinator
Name and Surname: 
Philip Ndeta
E-Mail: 
philipndeta@yahoo.com
6. Website
The website of the project: 
http://www.learninganddevelopmentkenya.org
7. Please select the category in which you candidate your project
Youth Education Project. Select Project Users by age: 
Up to 29 years
Helping youth step in the job market: 
NOT Helping youth step in the job market
Creativity and Social Innovation: 
NOT in Creativity and Social Innovation
8. How long has your project been running?
From: 
05/02/2001
9. Targets and Elements of Innovation
Please explain the targets and the background of your project: 

In 1998, Learning and Development Kenya (LDK) was founded to work with the local communities in addressing the problems brought about by government’s introduction of cost sharing in the education and health sectors. While outwardly improving the economy of Kenya, these government measures ultimately led to an increase in child labor, high rates of school dropouts, and increased homelessness in children.

What does it try to achieve and how: 

We believe education is the great equalizer, and by working to ensure that all Kenyans (and especially children) have access to quality educational programs, we believe we can dramatically reduce the inequalities caused by extreme poverty.

Which opportunities/problems does it address to: 

Since 2000 Learning and Development Kenya has been implementing a literacy project, designed to improve on the literacy and reading skills of the orphans and needy children and prepare them for positive and active participation in nation building. LDK provides an enabling learning environment with modern teaching facilities including solid classrooms, highly qualified and caring teaching staff and a modern library with the necessary books to motivate and boost the morale of both the children and teachers at the institution. This has improved the standard of learning, making the project one of the best within the Municipality in terms of provision of quality education.

Meal program: Every day, we provide a warm meal to 324 students in our school, children who would otherwise miss a meal.

Emergency Relief: During the post-election violence in Kenya in 2008, LDK hosted nearly 7,000 displaced peoples, coordinating with the Red Cross to ensure steady food supplies.

Athletic Leagues to Drive Community Empathy and Understanding:
Historically, athletic competition has peaceably brought together individuals, factions, and even nations with troubled relations, and we believe that friendly competition and the spirit of teamwork can have a positive impact on the youth of Kenya who have been driven apart by the recent political elections. We have organized soccer games from teams of idle youth who would otherwise be engaged in gang-related activities and violence.

HIV/AIDS Education: In conjunction with the Ark Foundation of Africa, we’ve provided training workshops for locals that aim to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS and promotes sustainable behavior change among the youth and residents. The workshops also aim to support scale up activities of CBOs within East Africa, engaging and strengthening the capacity of indigenous organizations so that they can scale up their programs and effectively meet the complex needs of orphans and vulnerable children in their communities.

Environmental Sustainability: It is a priority to LDK to ensure that the people we are helping will have a clean, healthy, safe place to live for many, many years – and environmental sustainability through improved sanitation is a critical component of that effort. LDK mobilizes youth in the community to participate in the environmental activities.

Please explain what is unique or special in your project: 

LDK provides an enabling learning environment with modern teaching facilities including solid classrooms, highly qualified and caring teaching staff and a modern library with the necessary books to motivate and boost the morale of both the children and teachers at the institution. This has improved the standard of learning, making the project one of the best within the Municipality in terms of provision of quality education. We consider this special for our literacy project.

The students in our classrooms are already among the neediest in the region, and by providing a warm meal as part of their education, we are improving their ability to learn while ensuring they are meeting their minimum daily nutritional needs. Our feeding program is of its own kind among the local schools.

Other than the local churches, LDK was the only local NGO in the area that hosted displaced peoples during the post-election violence in Kenya in 2008. This was because most of the affected people were from this area, a majority being the poor parents that LDK supports with education of their children. The facilities at its learning center also ensured safety of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) as well as our networking skills with both the provincial administration department and the Red Cross.

Being an active participant in community activities, LDK has positioned itself as a collaborating agency with the community in solving their most pressing issues. Due to this position the community has high regard for LDK’s initiatives, providing the much needed support and networking that is required for effective project implementation.

Initially there was stigma related to HIV/AIDS but with continuous awareness activities carried out by LDK staff and their understanding of the local cultures, the community became more cooperative and supportive. Also given the fact that we care for orphans in the community whose parents have died due to HIV/AIDS related dieses gives the community members all the reason to participate and support the imitative. Our unique facilities at the learning center have also made it possible for LDK to host participants for HIV/AIDS training and education.

10. Results
Describe the results of your project as per today: 

Since 1998 and through its education program, LDK has been able to provide support for high education and specialized training in secretarial courses, computer, teaching (both primary and ECD), IT and even tailoring to over 150 young Kenyans who would otherwise not have had a chance to empower their talents and build their future. Though no follow up has been made to establish their current status, we believe that with the qualifications attained through our support they are now employed in the government or private sector or even self-employed and therefore contributing to nation building.

Currently LDK supports 324 needy children in nursery, primary and secondary schools. It further supports 74 orphans with shelter, food, medical care and other basic needs. The orphans live in the home at the Virginia center in Rhonda slums within Nakuru Municipality.

During the post-election violence in Kenya in 2008, LDK hosted nearly 7,000 displaced peoples, coordinating with the Red Cross to ensure steady food supplies.

Since the Micor credit program was initiated in 2001 it has helped more than 4,500 families to develop sustainable sources of income (through loans of small amounts of seed capital at zero interest to start their own business), directly benefiting more than 36,000 individuals where an average family in these rural and urban poor areas consists of 8 members. These are families who otherwise would never have dreamed that financial independence was a possibility. In addition, we have held monthly workshops for the loan recipients to empower them with business skills. And because of the relationships we have fostered with the families of the many children from the communities enrolled in the schools, LDK is uniquely positioned to identify the most motivated, entrepreneurial individuals as recipients.

How does it fulfill the users’ needs: 

Users needs: Education – which we believe eventually contributes to reduction of inequalities caused by extreme poverty. LDK provides quality education and other services to its users, meeting their needs.

How many users interact with your project per month and what are the preferred forms of interaction: 

3,000 users. To be precise, 324 children, 22 teaching and subordinate staff, 1,600 familly members (200 families), 10 government, NGO and church officials, at least 500 other community members, and 500 other stakeholders (donors, overseas friends and guests, etc.) interact with our project per month through personal vists to the school (for the children, staff, government visitors, guests, and some parents), postal mail, and email. Some family members are updated by the school going children and therefore considered to be interacting with our project. Our termly newsletter since 2008 is also used as a form of interaction with the community while our website is visited by many people from around the world.

How has it improved the quality of educational and/or training services: 

The quality and standard of education of our children is high due to the determination of our teaching staff. The number of children per class is also reasonable at 35, enabling the teacher to reach all the children in the class, unlike in public schools where the population exceeds 120 children per class. This teacher-pupil ratio, in addition to available learning aids ensures that quality education is provided to the needy children. The interaction has fostered trust among the users who enjoy using the services, though it has not been able to attract more support in terms of funding, as we earlier anticipated.

How has it improved the participation of professionals, children, youth and other stakeholders: 

Participation is still less except for a few high schools and local churches that have mobilized their students and members to donate for our activities targeting the orphans and the poor. The youth participate in the activities while other members of the community have been very supportive, inspiring us even more. The government recognizes the role LDK play in the provision of basic needs to the needy and has supported our initiatives like donation of food for the feeding program and a grant for the learning aids.

How does it promote the use of ICT for the educational and cultural development by professionals, children and youth: 

The use and promotion of ICT is core to our project and a major component of our activities. The installed cybercafé at our learning center allows not only students but the rest of the community members to use the internet and communicate with people around the world, effectively promoting the use of ICT among the professionals, children and youth.

To market our services: Education, training, HIV/AIDS etc., to a wide audience LDK uses a number of techniques including advertisement in both print and mass media, posters, brochures, our end of the term/year newsletter, and even the internet. We therefore try to reach as many people (professionals, children and youth included) through frequent use of these techniques, again, effectively promoting the use of ICT.

Describe how you measure (parameters) these results: 

We record the number of users applying for our services. The number has exceedingly increased over the years, indicating strong support of our programs by the users.

Exams done by the children in our school together with other children in other Municipal schools: Comparison done has shown that children in our school have done much better than children in other public schools, confirming the high quality of education that we provide to our children.

We interview the public to find out how they view our services and they positive comments confirm their satisfaction with our services.

The visitors to our website, viewing our programs and interacting with us thereafter now exceeds 4,200 people. This is also used to measure the results of our services.

11. Sustainability
What is the full duration of your project: 
More than 6 years
What is the approximate total budget for your project (in USD): 
From 30.001 to 75.000
What is the source of funding for your project: 
Sale of products or services
Is your project economically self sufficient now: 
No
12. Transferability
Has your project been replicated/adapted elsewhere: 
Yes
Specify: 

The Government of Kenya through the district children’s office started a street children rehabilitation center “Ukoa Mtoto” within Nakuru Municipality and sent its engineers in 2007 to our learning center to get a view of the home we put up for the orphans to replicate the same at their planned rehabilitation center.

During our HIV/AIDS workshop held in 2007 for CBO leaders from Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda, participants from Tanzania were particularly impressed with not only the solid buildings but with the whole set up for a home for orphans who have been empowered and feel very much at home. They lived with the children in the same home during the workshop period and promised to replicate the same in their respective projects. No follow up has been made to confirm if at all replication has been made by any of the participants.

What lessons can others learn from your project: 

Quality is everything that others can learn from our project. With quality the users feel assured of the results.

Empowerment approach: We empower the users to feel part of the project, hence project ownership.

Permanent (solid) structures: These ensures that quality is provided to the users, for example the case with IDPs who felt much secure at our center during the post election violence.

Networking: Good and sustainable results are obtained through consistency and networking. LDK has been consistence with its approach to poverty aleviation, establishing and positioning itself as a poverty reduction agency within the community and hence wining the much needed support from all stakeholders – community, government, donors and friends.

Innovation: Unique activities started after careful research for community needs have had profound effect on the lives of our users.

Invovement and participation of the users have garaunteed project sustainnability even during difficult times when funding is so low like now.

We are available to help others starting or working on similar projects: 
We are available to help others starting or working on similar projects.
13. Background information
Background: 

In 1998, Three Kenyans - Philip Ndeta (the brains behind the organization), Obed Tsuma and Benta Atieno founded Learning and Development Kenya (LDK) to work with the local community to address the problems brought about by government’s introduction of cost sharing in the education and health sectors. While outwardly improving the economy of Kenya, these government measures ultimately led to an increase in child labor, high rates of school dropouts, and increased homelessness in children.

Since 1998 and through its education program, LDK has been able to provide support for high education and specialized training in secretarial courses, computer, teaching (both primary and ECD), IT and even tailoring to over 150 young Kenyans who would otherwise not have had a chance to empower their talents and build their future. Though no follow up has been made to establish their current status, we believe that with the qualifications attained through our support they are now employed in the government or private sector or even self-employed and therefore contributing to nation building.

Currently LDK supports 324 needy children in nursery, primary and secondary schools. It further supports 74 orphans with shelter, food, medical care and other basic needs. The orphans live in the home at the Virginia center in Rhonda slums within Nakuru Municipality.

Vision: To see a free Kenyan Society without inequalities of extreme poverty, destitution, deprivation, or austerity.

Mission: To respond to the needs of the communities and those of their children with a primary objective of improving the quality of life of those in need.

History: Local non-governmental, non-profit, non-sectarian development organization founded in 1998. It acquired special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations in 2008.

Programs: Education program
HIV/AIDS program
Environmental and Sanitation program
Peace initiative project
Relief activities
Civic education program

Overview of donors that have contributed to our programs:
Foundations; INGOs; Overseas corporations: The Hilden Charitable Fund – UK
Bertelsmann AG – Germany
The Ark Foundation of Africa – USA
CO-OPERAID – Switzerland
Random House New York – USA (Books)
Crossroads International – Hong Kong (China)
Misereor – Germany
Advantage Africa – UK
MIVA Switzerland (Vehicle)
Government: Kenya Government (Department of provincial administration – food for feeding program).
Kenya Government (Ministry of education – Grant for support of informal education system).

Programs details
Literacy Project
Since 2000 Learning and Development Kenya has been implementing a literacy project, designed to improve on the literacy and reading skills of the orphans and needy children and prepare them for positive and active participation in nation building. LDK provides an enabling learning environment with modern teaching facilities including solid classrooms, highly qualified and caring teaching staff and a modern library with the necessary books to motivate and boost the morale of both the children and teachers at the institution. This has improved the standard of learning, making the project one of the best within the Municipality in terms of provision of quality education.

Meal Program
Every day, we provide a warm meal to 324 students in our school, children who would otherwise miss a meal.

Skills Training Workshops
The skills training program is more connected to the micro credit project. It aims to provide capacity building and therefore strengthen individual business skills of the loan recipients. The program is based on the premise that trade is the most effective way of helping the poor to create sustainable, long-term solutions to the economic problems they face. It has helped beneficiaries to master their trading skills, lowering default rate on repaying the loans.

Microcredit Program
To help families develop sustainable sources of income, we loan small amounts of seed capital at zero interest to families to start their own business—families who otherwise would never have dreamed that financial independence was a possibility.

The micro credit project has been implemented on the believe that the best way to address poverty is to help families and individuals to become financially independent – through free revolving loans, education and training, that will lead them into income generation and employment. And because of the relationships we have fostered with the families of many children from the community enrolled in the school, LDK is uniquely positioned to identify the most motivated, entrepreneurial individuals as recipients. These individuals are often the parents of our students, which allows us to ensure that this support is being targeted at the families most in need and maintain continuous contact.

Emergency Relief
During the post-election violence in Kenya in 2008, LDK hosted nearly 7,000 displaced peoples, coordinating with the Red Cross to ensure steady food supplies. Other than the local churches, LDK was the only local NGO that was involved in this exercise because most of the affected people were from this area, a majority being the poor parents that LDK supports with education of their children. The facilities at its learning center also ensured safety of the Internally Displaced Persons as well as our networking skills with both the provincial administration department and the Red Cross.

HIV/AIDS Education
The program aims to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS and promotes sustainable behavior change among the youth and residents.
LDK has also collaborated with the Ark Foundation of Africa to support scale up activities of CBOs within East Africa:

Too many orphans and other vulnerable children (OVC) in Africa are growing up in situations of scarcity without education, healthcare, strong parental support etc. Similarly, grandmothers who care for the majority of orphans are overwhelmed, doing their job under very difficult, unsupportive circumstances. Grandmothers are simply doing what they know and what they love doing, day after day.

In countries with very weak or practically non-existent social safety nets like Kenya, indigenous NGOs and CBOs are also struggling to survive. Many do not have the resources or enough staff with the right skills and training to enable them to effectively address OVC related challenges.

To address this dilemma, LDK and the Ark Foundation of Africa and its partners organized a 5-day capacity building workshop for leaders of indigenous organizations in Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda. The participatory workshop focused on building culturally sustainable and realistic programs to close the large gap between the need and available services. Learning and Development Kenya acted as the host organization for the workshop.
30 participants were nominated for the workshop from eligible organizations working directly with orphans and vulnerable children and their caregivers. Most of the nominated organizations that participated in the workshop are based in the districts of:

Kenya – Nakuru, Mombasa, Nandi and Trans Nzoia
Tanzania – Bagamoyo, Dodoma Rural, and Mbozi, and Zanzibar
Uganda – Gulu, Kitgum, Luwero, and Wakiso

The workshop aimed at engaging and strengthening the capacity of indigenous organizations so that they can scale up their programs and effectively meet the complex needs of orphans and vulnerable children in their communities.

Athletic Leagues to Drive Community Empathy and Understanding
Historically, athletic competition has peaceably brought together individuals, factions, and even nations with troubled relations, and we believe that friendly competition and the spirit of teamwork can have a positive impact on the youth of Kenya who have been driven apart by the recent political elections. We have organized soccer games from teams of idle youth who would otherwise be engaged in gang-related activities and violence.

Environmental Sustainability
It is a priority to LDK to ensure that the people we are helping will have a clean, healthy, safe place to live for many, many years – and environmental sustainability through improved sanitation is a critical component of that effort.

LDK mobilizes youth in the community to participate in the environmental activities. Usually once a year in tree planting exercises when the long rains start in March/April, and once monthly in the clean up exercises. Most of the youth participating in these activities are those being supported but they influence other members in the community in the overall cleaning exercises.

Barriers: 

Poverty is at its highet in this urban poor (slum) area. The users come in large numbers but have not been able to contribute substantially to the level that the project can remain sustainable. Our IT training has not quite picked up since a majority of the targeted youth cannot afford to meet our subsidzed tuition.

Funding from potential donors has been less or nil in some situations, leading to difficult implementation of the planned activities. For sustainability purposes we plan to diversify our funding sources and initiate more for-profit activities that will generate more income and cover for any dificit in donor funding.

Marketing of our products – college, Cybercafé, magazine etc. has not been effective due to less funding for marketing activities.

Cultural norms: Particularly stigma when it comes to HIV/AIDS awareness program.

Solutions: 

Consistency in provision of services, for example our creation of awareness activities for the HIV/AIDS program has worked positively towards stigma reduction among the target groups.

LDK has started for-profit activities to meet the needs of our charitable initiatives. We have planned to introduce a magazine “The Charity”. The first copy is ready but funds for its production, marketing and distribution is still unavailable.

Sale of T-Shirts planned.

Student’s canteen planned.

Sale of stationery and being agent for Safaricom for M-PESA services also planned.

Cybercafé has been installed.

College planned, awaiting marketing to get the minimum number of students. Facilities and human resources are available and on standby.

Future plans and wish list: 

LDK plans for the future:
LDK hopes to become a vibrant organization adhering to its core values of integrity, honesty, fairness, openness, respect and responsibility in all that we do. It will focus on improving the lives of the poor, especially children, youth and women, and those affected by the HIV pandemic.
In the next two years LDK hopes to enroll more than 1,000 children and youth in its literacy program – from nursery, primary and secondary schools. Its training facility will be training more youth in IT and other specialized courses to enable them gain the required skills for employment. The construction of the stalled primary school will also be LDK’s top priority once more funding is available.
For it to remain sustainable LDK will target to fully operate the student training facility and offer other services associated with it including a student canteen, a cybercafé, and a stationery shop. Other income generating activities like the production and sale of publications e.g. a newsletter/magazine will be LDK priority at this time and when funds become available.
To have more impact within the community it operates and to contribute positively to reduction of poverty, LDK will increase its loan support to the poor members and continue with the workshops to empower the beneficiaries with business skills required to ensure business success.
For the projects to be run professionally and ensure that the stated goals and objectives are met on timely basis, LDK will require to retain and sustain its qualified staff, by paying them salaries and allowances based on the current market rates.
Stalled initiatives: Soccer teams and athletics will be enhanced when LDK access more funding.

When all this is achieved, we believe we shall be taking a holistic approach towards fighting the inequalities caused by extreme poverty within the communities that we work with.

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TAKORADI EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE

THE TAKORADI EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE HELPS CHILDREN AGES 6-15 REACH THEIR FULL POTENTIAL AND OBTAIN SKILLS FOR A BETTER FUTURE.

1. Project summary
Summary: 

TO BE WORLDWIDE IS A FOUNDATION THAT HELPS CHILDREN IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES REALISE THEIR FULL POTENTIAL, SO THAT LATER THEY CAN HELP BUILD THEIR COMMUNITIES. TO BE WORLDWIDE HAS MADE A MEANINGFUL CONTRIBUTION TOWARDS ACCESS TO FACILITIES FOR QUALITY EDUCATION. FOUNDED IN 20024 BY NELLIE KIRSCHNER-TIMMER, WHO IS OF GHANAIAN/DUTCH DECENT.

NELLIE WANTED TO CONTRIBUTE TO HER GHANAIAN ROOTS BY USING HER EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE GAINED IN EUROPE. SHE HAS USED HER BACK GROUND AS A HUMAN RESOURCE SPECIALIST TO DEVELOP THE CONCEPT OF THE EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE.

TO BE WORLDWIDE BUILDS & OPERATES EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRES THAT COMPLEMENT THE EXISTING PUBLIC SCHOOL STRUCTURE. EACH FACILITY OFFERS A LIBRARY, A COMPUTER CENTRE AND AN ACTIVITIES PROGRAM TO STIMULATE THE DEVELOPMENT OF CHILDREN'S CREATIVE AND TECHNOLOGICAL SKILLS. THE CENTRE OFFERS INNOVATIVE E-LEARNING MATERIAL THAT REFLECT WHAT THE CHILDREN ARE TAUGHT AT SCHOOL. THE CENTRES WORK WITH LOCAL GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS TO PROVIDE COMPUTER LESSONS DURING SCHOOL HOURS AND OFFER A RANGE OF ACTIVITIES (E.G. DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY PROJECTS ETC.) FOR AFTER SCHOOL. CHILDREN PAY A NOMINAL FEE TO USE THE CENTRE THEREBY ENSURING COMMITMENT. WWW.TOBEWORLDWIDE.ORG

THE OBJECTIVE OF THIS PROJECT IS TO SCALE UP THE CONCEPT OF THE EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE IN DIFFERENT REGIONS OF GHANA. SCALING UP THE CONCEPT WILL BASED ON THE (SUCCESSFUL) EXPERIENCE OF THE FIRST EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE LOCATED IN TAKORADI, A 4 HOUR DRIVE FROM ACCRA, AND SERVES
MORE THAN 12 LOCAL GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS.

TO BE WORLDWIDE STRIVES TO PROVIDE CHILDREN IN GHANA WITH SKILLS THAT WILL BETTER PREPARE THEM FOR THE FUTURE, FOR THE LABOUR MARKET AND FOR AN OPPORTUNITY TO CONTRIBUTE TO THEIR COMMUNITY.

2. Country (City / Region)
State: 
Ghana
City: 
TAKORADI , WESTERN REGION
3. Company/organization/institute presenting the project
Organization: 
To Be Worldwide
4. Type of organization
Select type: 
Other
Other: 
Foundation/Ngo
5. Project coordinator
Name and Surname: 
NELLIE KIRSCHNER- TIMMER
E-Mail: 
nellie.kirschner@tobeworldwide.org
6. Website
The website of the project: 
http://www.tobeworldwide.org
7. Please select the category in which you candidate your project
Youth Education Project. Select Project Users by age: 
Up to 15 years
Helping youth step in the job market: 
Helping youth step in the job market
Creativity and Social Innovation: 
Creativity and Social Innovation
8. How long has your project been running?
From: 
24/07/2004
9. Targets and Elements of Innovation
Please explain the targets and the background of your project: 

TO BE WORLDWIDE WANTS TO DEVELOP 4 EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTERS BETWEEN NOW AND 2013. SHE THEN WANTS TO MAKE THE CONCEPT OF THE EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE AVAILABLE TO PARTNER ORGANISATIONS TO SET UP IN AREAS IN GHANA AND EVENTUALLY OTHER DEVELOPING COUNTRIES WHERE THESE PARTNERS WILL HAVE A BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF THE NEEDS OF THAT PARTICULAR REGION OR COUNTRY. TO BE WORLDWIDE WILL PROVIDE HER EXPERIENCE AND STANDARDS TO MAKE THE IMPLEMENTATION SUCCESSFUL. WITH THE 4 CENTERS SHE REALIZES HERSELF SHE WANTS TO REACH 25000 CHILDREN OF THE AGES 6-15 YEARS.

What does it try to achieve and how: 

THE PRESENT EDUCATIONAL, RESOURCE CENTRE BASED IN TAKORADI GHANA, REACHES 3000 CHILDREN. IT IS OUR INTENTION TO INCREASE THE ENROLLMENT AT THE CENTRE AND WORK CLOSELY WITH THE MINISTRY OF EDUCATION AND THE LOCAL SCHOOLS TO MAKE SURE WE HAVE THE RIGHT MATERIAL AND PROGRAMS THAT COMPLEMENT THE REGULAR SCHOOL SYSTEM. THEN TO BE WORLDWIDE WILL CONTINUE TO CREATE INNOVATION BY BRINING IN EXCITING E-LEARNING COURSEWARE, WORKSHOPS, EXCHANGE PROGRAMS ETC. ALL GEARED AT EMPOWERING THE CHILDREN WHO MAKE USE OF OUR FACILITIES. WE WILL THEN DOCUMENT ALL THESE PROCESSES IN ORDER TO MAKE THE SCALING UP MORE EFFICIENT.

Which opportunities/problems does it address to: 

WE REALISED THAT ALTHOUGH GHANA HAS A GOOD EDUCATION SYSTEM IT IS STILL DEALING WITH A HIGH DROP OUT RATES WHEN CHILDREN TRANSITION FROM PRIMARY SCHOOL TO SECONDARY SCHOOL AND BEYOND. WE HOPE WE CAN CONTRIBUTE, BY MAKING LEARNING EXCITING AND OFFERING MORE FACILITIES, TO KEEPING CHILDREN AND PARENTS MORE INTERESTED IN EDUCATION AND THUS KEEPING CHILDREN LONGER IN SCHOOL.

Please explain what is unique or special in your project: 

OUR PROJECT IS UNIQUE AS IT IS INNOVATIVE IN ITS APPROACH, TRANSPARENT AND EFFICIENT IN ITS MANAGEMENT. BUT MOST OF ALL ALTHOUGH WE TARGET CHILDREN AGES 6-15 YEARS WE INVOLVE THEIR TEACHERS AND THEIR PARENTS ON ALL LEVELS, THUS PAVING THE WAY FOR THE CHILDREN TO MAKE BETTER DECISIONS WITH THEIR PARENTS AND COMMUNITY ABOUT THEIR FUTURE.

10. Results
Describe the results of your project as per today: 

AS MENTIONED BEFORE WE HAVE BEEN ABLE TO REACH AROUND 3000 CHILDREN, MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN THE LIVES OF SO MANY CHILDREN. WE HAVE SEEN STUDENTS USE SOME OF THE SKILLS OBTAINED AT OUR CENTRE TO SET UP SMALL BUSINESSES (USING POWER POINT TO MAKE ADVERTISING STILL FOR LOCAL SHOPS AND EARNING A LITTLE MONEY TO FURTHER THEIR EDUCATION) TEACHERS HAVE CONFIRMED THAT CHILDREN WHO USE OUR FACILITIES HAVE IMPROVED IN THEIR REGULAR SCHOOL WORK

How does it fulfill the users’ needs: 

CLASSES AND MATERIALS AT OUR CENTRE COMPLEMENT THE CURRICULUM OF THE EXISTING SCHOOL SYSTEM IN GHANA. THIS MAKES IS VERY USEFUL TO THE USERS. CHILDREN ARE ABLE TO EXPLORE TOPICS TAUGHT AT SCHOOL AT OUR CENTRE AND LEARN MORE, BY USING THE INTERNET TO RESEARCH OR EVEN USING THE REFERENCE BOOKS IN THE LIBRARY.

How many users interact with your project per month and what are the preferred forms of interaction: 

ABOUT 470 CHILDREN VISIT THE EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE EACH WEEK/1800 A MONTH. THESE ARE REOCCURRING USERS. CHILDREN COME TO THE CENTRE TO TAKE ICT COURSES, USE THE INTERNET, BORROW BOOKS , READ AND PARTICIPATE IN ACTIVITIES

How has it improved the quality of educational and/or training services: 

WE HAVE ALSO OFFERED ICT TRAINING TO THE TEACHERS OF ALL THE SCHOOLS WE SERVICE IN THE COMMUNITY. WE HOPE THAT THIS WILL HELP THEM UNDERSTAND THE NEW IMPLEMENTED CURRICULUM BY THE MINISTRY OF EDUCATION. WE ALSO HOPE THAT HAVING ACCESS TO THE INTERNET THROUGH OUR CENTRE WILL HELP THEM PREPARE THEIR CLASSES AND MAKE THEM MORE APPEALING FOR THEM SELVES AND THE CHILDREN

How has it improved the participation of professionals, children, youth and other stakeholders: 

WE FEEL THAT WE ARE MORE AND MORE ABLE TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE COMMUNITY AS A WHOLE KEEPING OUR TARGET GROUP OF CHILDREN AGES 6-15 IN MIND. RECENTLY A SURVEY FOR CHILDREN’S PARENTS MADE US REALISE THAT A SUBSTANTIAL NUMBER OF PARENTS WERE ILLITERATES. WE THEN PROCEEDED TO CONTACT THE NON-FORMAL EDUCATION DEPARTMENT TO DISCUSS POSSIBILITIES TO HOLD LITERACY CLASSES FROM OUR FACILITIES IN EVENING HOURS WHICH WILL THEN ALSO ALLOW US TO OFFER THIS OPPORTUNITY TO THE CHILDREN’S PARENTS. WE FEEL THAT ONCE THEY ARE ALSO FUNCTIONALLY LITERATE THEY ARE IN A BETTER POSITION TO HELP THEIR CHILDREN PLAN FOR A BETTER FUTURE.

How does it promote the use of ICT for the educational and cultural development by professionals, children and youth: 

THE CENTRE OFFERS A BASIC COMPUTER SKILLS COURSE TO CHILDREN AGES 6-15 YEARS. MOST OF THEM COME FROM SCHOOLS WITHIN A 10 MIN. WALKING RADIUS OF OUR CENTRE. BUT THERE ARE ALSO STUDENTS THAT COME FROM ACROSS TOWN. THE BASIC COMPUTER SKILLS COURSE IS ALSO OFFERED TO ADULTS, BUT AT A FEE, WHICH ALLOWS US TO GENERATE INCOME LOCALLY.
THE COURSE CONSISTS OF MS OFFICE, INTERNET AND WORKING WITH THE E-LEARNING COURSEWARE AVAILABLE. DIFFERENT PROJECTS ARE INITIATED USING ICT, E.G. EXCHANGE PROGRAMS SUCH AS THE GLOBAL TEENAGER PROGRAM OR DIRECT EXCHANGES WITH DIFFERENT SCHOOLS.

Describe how you measure (parameters) these results: 

WE REGISTER THE NUMBER OF USERS AND THE NUMBER OF BOOKS BORROWED EACH MONTH. IT IS STILL VERY DIFFICULT TO MEASURE THE EXACT IMPACT OUR WORK HAS ON THE CHILDREN. WE DO HOLD SURVEYS AMONGS OUR USERS AND WILL SOON BE WORKING ON A REPORT CARD COMPARISON TO OBTAIN INFORMATION ON HOW CHILDREN WHO HAVE USED OUR FACILITIES HAVE FARED COMPARED TO CHILDREN WHO HAVE NOT USED OUR FACILITIES. OBTAINING THE RIGHT MEASURING INSTRUMENTS IS ONE OF OUR WISHES.

11. Sustainability
What is the full duration of your project: 
More than 6 years
What is the approximate total budget for your project (in USD): 
From 10.001 to 30.000
What is the source of funding for your project: 
Grants
Is your project economically self sufficient now: 
No
12. Transferability
Has your project been replicated/adapted elsewhere: 
Yes
Specify: 

WE ARE CURRENTLY BUILDING A SECOND EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE IN ANOTHER REGION IN GHANA. WE EXPECT THE CAPE COAST EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE TO BE UP AND RUNNING IN THE FALL OF 2009 .

What lessons can others learn from your project: 

WE INVITE ANYONE WHO HAS THE INTENTION TO SET UP A SIMILAR TYPE OF PROJECT TO CONTACT US AS WE ARE ALL FOR SHARING OUR EXPERIENCES AND LIKE TO LEARN FROM OTHERS AS WELL. OUR STRENGHTS LIE IN OUR APPROACH. THE FOUNDER AND MANAGER IS OF BOTH WORLDS, THE WESTERN WORLD AND THE DEVELOPING WORLD. THIS COMBINED WITH OUR EXPERIENCE IN THE CORPORATE WORLD AS WELL AS THE NGO WORK MAKES US VERY CAPABLE AT CREATING A CONCEPT AND IMPLEMENTING IT.

We are available to help others starting or working on similar projects: 
We are available to help others starting or working on similar projects.
13. Background information
Background: 

I (NELLIE KIRSCHNER-TIMMER) WAS BORN IN TAKORADI GHANA AND I AM HALF DUTCH , HALF GHANAIAN. I HAVE SPENT MANY YEARS STUDYING AND WORKING IN EUROPE AND EVENTUALLY DECIDED THAT I WANTED TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF GHANA USING MY SKILLS. THIS LEAD TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE CONCEPT OF THE EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE. WE HAVE WORKED HARD AT REALISING THE FIRST CENTRE WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF PARTNERS SUCH AS UNICEF GHANA, EUROPEAN UNION IN GHANA AND MANY OTHER SPONSORS AND VOLUNTEERS. WE ARE NOW ON OUR WAY TO OPEN A SECOND EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE.

Barriers: 

AMONGST OUR CHALLENGES WAS THE FACT THAT OUR PROJECT DID NOT, IN THE EYES OF SOME POTENTIAL FUNDERS, ADDRESS THE ISSUES SUCH AS HUNGER, DISEASE POVERTY DIRECTLY, THUS MAKING FUNDRAISING IN THE BEGINNING VERY DIFFICULT. ANOTHER CHALLENGE IS MAKING A BUDGET AND WORKING WITHIN IT. WHEN DEALING WITH INFLATION IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES, YOUR BUDGET FOR BUILDING A CENTRE ENDS UP DIFFERENTLY THEN INTENDED.

Solutions: 

BY TRAIL AND ERROR , EXPERIENCE AND NOT GIVING UP EVENTUALLY GOT US THROUGH MOST OF THE BARRIERS. E.G WHEN MAKING A BUDGET FOR BUILDING CALCULATE IN A LARGER AMOUNT FOR INFLATION AN FLUCTUATION OF PRICES OF BUILDING MATERIAL.

Future plans and wish list: 

AS MENTIONED BEFORE. OUR ORGANISATION WOULD LIKE TO DEVELOP 4 CENTERS BY 2013. THIS WILL REQUIRE FUNDS TO BUILD AN OTHER 2 CENTERS ( € 100’000). BUT EQUALLY AS IMPORTANT IS TO BUILD OUR ORGANISATION IN GHANA TO MANAGE THESE CENTERS, TO SUSTAIN THE QUALITY OF EDUCATION GIVEN AND REMAIN INNOVATIVE. THIS REQUIRES THE RIGHT PEOPLE IN THE RIGHT POSITIONS. FUNDS FOR RECRUITMENT AND CAPACITY BUILDING (€ 25000).

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