Lufeyo walks to school, every day, on an empty stomach, unsure of when she’ll have her next meal - if it can even be called that. As she sits in her classroom, her stomach is gnawing at her with hunger pains, and it’s a challenge to retain the physical and mental strength she needs to focus on learning her basic skills.
It’s highly unlikely that she’s able to even read a single word, or spell her name. Some of this can be attributed to her hunger, but it is compounded by the fact that she is sitting in a class of 200 or more other students - with only 1 teacher, and is also sharing her textbooks with multiple other children - and she’s already had 3 different teachers this year due to the high turnover rate. As each year passes, Lufeyo isn’t guaranteed that she’ll advance to the next level, and if she’s not able to pass her primary school forms (Elementary School), most likely she’ll never be able to advance into Secondary School (High School). Even if she does overcome the aforementioned obstacles, she would be considered fortunate as only 35% of children in Malawi complete primary school.
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Lufeyo’s teacher is exhausted and considering searching for a new position. Her motivation is waning as she, daily, looks over a sea of faces that are eager to learn, but knows she doesn’t have the assistance or the resources to help her meet the educational needs of every single one of the 200 students crowded into her small classroom. Her pay is meager, and she struggles each day to pay for child care for her baby and toddler. If only her school would provide a preschool/nursery school to help care for her children, and also offer a solid foundation for other young children, maybe her task wouldn’t seem so monumental.
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Unfortunately, this is the norm in Malawi, rather than the exception. In fact, many children aren’t even receiving an education at all because of the extreme poverty - forcing them to work in the fields or be married at a young age. The people of Malawi are eager to learn, however so many obstacles stand in their way.
Our hearts are burdened for the people of Malawi. We understand how important education is to the development of individuals - which then extends to the bolstering of a society and country.
SO WHAT DO WE DO ABOUT IT?
We believe that God has opened the door for us to expand our ministry by working to remove barriers to education. Beginning in 2020, we plan to begin building a Gospel-In-Action School where we can begin a work to change lives of up to 480 students, and their teachers by:
• Conforming to Malawi government regulations for education, while providing optimum learning conditions. Classes will retain a ratio of 1 teacher to every 20-30 students.
• Decreasing malnourishment by providing daily, nutritional lunches for every student
• Providing each student with their own text books to further advance the learning process.
• Hiring qualified teachers, and compensating them with a fair living wage. We anticipate that this will allow us to retain solid teachers, and help the students continue to develop academically due to fewer changes within their classes.
• Providing a nursery/preschool as a trusted and safe place where any pre-school aged children of teachers can be lovingly cared for - at no charge - leaving them free to focus on their students for the school day. The nursery/preschool may also be a place where the younger siblings of our students can begin their journey of learning much earlier instead of staying home or being taken to the fields to work.
Our prayer is that the Gospel-In-Action School will be a place where children can thrive mentally and physically and where teachers will find a solid and stable working environment.
Most importantly, we pray that this school will impact and change lives on a spiritual level by incorporating the good news of the Gospel into each school day - and see lives changed eternally.
IN ORDER TO DO THIS, WE NEED YOUR HELP! HERE'S OUR PLAN OF ACTION:
- Our first goal is to raise $26,000 to construct the school. Would you prayerfully consider contributing?
- After the funds for the building are raised, our goal will be to purchase equipment, desks, and school supplies.
- There will be costs to operate and administrate the school - including upkeep and maintenance. We currently have a volunteer School Board working through the planning stages. We also are pleased to have a lovely woman named Jewel Campbell as part of our team. She has answered God's call on her life to serve full-time in Malawi. Jewel is currently in the process of selling everything (her home, car, etc.) in order to spend the school year on-site as our school administrator. We would love to see her fully funded as well!
- We will need many qualified teachers for the school. Would you consider partnering with us to sponsor a teacher's salary? Believe it or not, a competitive wage for a teacher is currently only $100 USD/month. If we were to hire 10 teachers for our first year, it would only take $12,000/year to pay ALL of our teachers' salaries.
NOW IT'S YOUR TURN...
We've shared our vision for changing lives in Malawi, and all we ask is that you'd prayerfully consider how the Lord would want to use you to help us love them and make an eternal impact in their
It’s so important to us that we take steps only in the direction that God is leading us...which is why this is an exciting and affirming day! God has made it abundantly clear that He wants this school built in Malawi - and He used your generosity to provide! Our need was $26,000 to fund the construction of the GIA school. A few days after we announced our goal, an anonymous donor offered to match all donations through Christmas Day, up to $13,000...
Through individuals and businesses giving via PayPal, FB, GiveButter, and checks sent in to GIA, the total raised was $14,050 - meaning we are FULLY FUNDED to begin building - and THEN SOME! God knows exactly what was needed and He provided!
Keep watch as we begin the next step in the process-we will keep you up to date on our FB page! We love you all, and are sincerely thankful for your part in our mission!
12.22.19 Update: We have 3 days left of our match challenge, and over the past 2 days, we have received over $2500 in additional donations! We praise the Lord for all of you who have contributed so far! If we raise $13,000 in donations by Christmas Day, then the construction of the school will be fully funded once it's matched!!!
11.27.19 Update: We are receiving word that some individuals are donating with a check - so we'll be sure to update our total amount, above! GiveButter is a safe and secure way to make a donation - PayPal and Venmo are both options you can choose at checkout!
11.26.19 Update: We've received a pledge to match every dollar raised toward the GIA Malawi School! When you give - up through Christmas Day - every dollar will be matched (up to $13,000)...That means, if we meet the goal of $13,000 in donations by Christmas Day, we can begin building the school! Praise the Lord - He's at work and it's thrilling to be a small part of what He's doing!
*GIA is a non-profit organization: Reach Out For Christ With Friends Around The World