Global Learn Day 2018 is Changing the World

Global Learn Day 2018 is in the books! Thank you to all of you who participated and presented in our global event! Over the next several weeks, we will be recapping our ports of call, here on the blog. Hope you will reminisce with us over this epic voyage.

Learning is our goal! World wide access to education is our mission! Each Global Learn Day, we seek to promote the value of education for every person, throughout the world.

One way that we promote education for all is by sharing charities working to help all children receive a life changing education. One of those projects that we had the honor of sharing is the Being Kind Foundation Adava.

be kind

Being Kind Foundation provides underprivledged children in India with clothing, school supplies, tuition, basic necessities at home, and more. Every dollar donated goes directly to children in dire need.

Without a good education, these children have little hope of breaking the crippling cycle of poverty. Won’t you help them by Being Kind?

Learn more in the video below or visit their brand new Facebook page.

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Meet A Presenter: Being Kind

Have you ever felt left out or left behind? For children growing up in the Gajapati District of Odisha, India, this is more profound than being left out of games on the playground. Lower caste and Christian children are shunned in every part of society. It is incredible difficult for them to get the basic needs of life and even harder for their parents to find adequate work.

be kind

The answer that will open the doors shut before them is education. Three brothers who grew up in the region have banded together to supply a better future for these children by providing access to education and school supplies.

“GIVING AN OPPORTUNITY

TO THESE POOR KIDS TO STUDY

BY BEING KIND”

It is the kindness and generosity of Fr Jessaya Nayak, CM, Mr. Kisant Nayak, and Mr.  Susant Nayak that is changing the lives of 45 children every year by providing:

  • School bags
  • Notebooks
  • Uniforms
  • Geometry boxes
  • Tiffin boxes
  • Umbrella for the rainy season
  • Sweaters and warm coats for the winter
  • School tuition
  • Admission fees
  • Hostel fees

Without a good education, the future of these children is grim and their employment prospects are bleak. However, for just $150 per year, a child can receive everything he needs for a successful year of school which leads to a promising future.

gld 2018

We look forward to learning more about the Nayaks’ Being Kind project on Global Learn Day in just a few weeks. Opening doors to education is one of the core goals of the Global Learn Day team. We know that education will not only unite the world, but provide a future full of peace, hope, and promise.

If you would like to help support the Being Kind project, please comment below and we will connect you with the the Nayaks. Any donation can make a difference, for these children the difference is life changing. More information will also be available on Global Learn Day.

How can you make a difference? It could be as easy as sharing your gifts and knowledge with the world on Global Learn Day 2018. Time is rapidly running out. If you would like to be a presenter, please sign up today!

 

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hope and dreams

Meet a Presenter: Hope and Dream Initiative

Do you have a library card? How often do you use it? For many people the library is a regular stop in their daily life, a place to get the latest thriller or read the daily paper. Libraries offer so much that it is easy to take them for granted.  However, libraries are not just your spot for free movie audiobook rentals, they are a land of opportunity and change.

Nguzo Ogbodo started the Hope and Dreams Initiative when her daughter was disappointed that they could not keep their weekly tradition of visiting the library on Saturday while on a trip to Nigeria.

Mummy why don’t you gather your friends together and raise money and build one for the children of this community and I will invite Michelle Obama to come.”

A child’s simple vision is changing the world because it gave her mother an amazing mission. In a global ranking of least literate nations, Nigeria ranks third! Add to that the lack of access to proper facilities for hygiene, and it leaves Nigeria’s children lacking in so many fundamental human rights.

To change that, Ogobodo’s initiative has been building reading rooms with a twist. These mini libraries are chock full of enticing non-fiction and spell binding fiction books for all ages, however, they also work to teach proper hygiene while providing the tools needed to stay healthy.

hope and dreams

WASH reading rooms house a hand washing station at the entrance and resources to teach hygienic practices and their importance. Better hygiene and access to literature are both helping children grow and learn so they can have a more promising future.

Hope and Dream does not stop there, though. In a often overlooked area, lack of simple resources is highly impacting access to education for girls. Girls who need the education to break the cycle of poverty but don’t have the means to do so.

By providing access to menstrual pads, the girls who come to the WASH reading rooms are gaining back 5 days of education, on average, every month. Those few days add up to an extra 2-4 months of education every year! Months that can make the difference between a solid education with hope for the future and an opportunity lost.

One book, one room, at a time are changing the lives of one child,  and one community forever. Through this initiative, the world is a brighter place for hundred of children because of a little soap, running water, and shelves filled with books.

To date, nine WASH reading rooms have been built at schools in the most underserved communities in Africa, mostly in Nigeria. Think of how many more lives could be changed by these simple gifts?

hope and dreams

Nguzo Ogobodo is changing the world and we are thrilled to have her be a part of Global Learn Day to raise awareness for this vital mission.

Do you have a dream you want to share? Are you making a difference in access to education? Global Learn Day is actively seeking presenters and partners to teach the world and further our vision of uniting the world through education.

 

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Meet Our Presenters: Mary’s Meals

Do you want to save the world? Feeling like there is too much to be done and you are too small to make a difference?

 

If you can’t feed a hundred people, just feed one

Mother Teresa

That is the quote and simple premise that inspired a huge charity making immense strides in the battle against poverty and starvation.

Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow began Mary’s Meals with the dream of giving just one child a good meal once a day at a school. His charity now feeds 1,257,278 children around the world every single day.

More than just a small hand out, the meals provided are packed with the nutrition that they hungriest children desperately need. Moreover, with food being provided at school, these children are receiving a life changing education with a side of life saving nourishment.

Food + School = HOPE

Inspired by his deep faith and full of young zeal, Magnus and his brother began collecting donations in the mid-1980’s to aid those suffering from the Bosnian War. What started as a summer project, soon grew into a full time career and a large charity named SRI.

When the war ended, Magnus looked for where he could help next. This led him to Malawi in 2002 where a great famine raged. There, Magnus met Edward who shared his biggest hope with Magnus.

“I want to have enough food to eat and to go to school one day.”

That was the birth of Magnus’ lifelong mission. That year, Mary’s Meals fed 200 children in Malawi. The Mary’s Meals program now operates in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, and South America, as well as running a home for young people with HIV in Romania who were abandoned as children.

The beauty of this simple idea goes beyond the meal at school, though. Ingredients are sourced locally, contributing to the local economy. Local volunteers and employees are used to cook, serve, and guard the meals, creating an empowerment unlike traditional food drop programs.

 

one dime can save the world

The most spectacular feature of Mary’s Meals, though, is the cost. Each meal costs only 10 cents, meaning a child can receive an entire year’s worth of meals for only $19.50! In an effort to feed as many children as possible, at least 93% of all donations go directly toward the providing of meals, not organization overhead.

We are grateful to have Mary’s Meals International as a returning presenter, and inspired by the work it does to provide continued access to education.

Do you know a charity breaking down barriers to education? We would love to know more about it.

Global Learn Day 2018 is just four months away. Are you ready? We are working hard to make this the best Global Learn Day, ever, but we need your help!

We are still seeking presenters and partners, but also participants like you who are our greatest asset.

If you would like to learn more about becoming a part of the Global Learn Day team, please check out our Partners and Presenters page or drop a comment below! We will be sure to get in touch with you, soon.

How to get involved with Global Learn Day 2018

How can you unite the world through education?

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What can just a pencil and a notebook do?

What Can Just a Pencil and a Notebook Do?

What is the greatest treasure you could receive? Is there one thing you would risk everything to have? For millions of children, that one gift is education. The statistics on education around the globe are grim, but there is still hope. Young advocates, like Malala are fighting to open access to education for every child!

 

Who is Malala?

Malala was born in 1997 in Pakistan.  She is the second daughter of the Yousatzi family. While girls are often unwelcome additions in Pakistan, but Malala and her sister are cherished.

Her father is a teacher and was determined to give his daughters a good education and every opportunity he can. Malala grows up as a happy child who loves books and enjoys her time in school.

Why is She Famous?

In 2007, Taliban militants invade her home region of Swat and impose harsh laws, these include banning girls from school. Malala is determined not to give up her education, even though doing so could mean a death sentence.

Malala becomes an underground blogger for the BBC, relaying information about the conditions in Pakistan during the Taliban rule and ensuing fight for freedom. She uses the name Gul Makai to conceal her identity online.

Over one million people, including the Yousafzai family, flee from their homes as Pakistani fighters sweep into the region to push out the Taliban. In the midst of this, the New York Times does a feature piece on Malala and her father because of her blog posts. The pair discuss there fight for education for every girl.

The Taliban is forced into the more rural areas of Pakistan and Malala’s school reopens. She is happy to be back but wary of her growing notoriety. In 2011, she receives the Pakistani National Youth Leader award.

Almost one year later, on her way to school, a masked gunman boards her school bus. He asks for Malala by name then shoots her in the head, shoulder, and neck. Two of her friends are also injured.

Malala is critically injured and flown to a hospital in the United Kingdom to recover. While world prays for Malala’s recovery, she undergoes multiple surgeries and months of therapy.

When Malala recovers and is released, she has found her purpose in life and her new home. Her family set up their new home in Birmingham, England.

What is Malala fighting for?

There are 130 million girls out of school due to laws prohibiting their education or life circumstance. Malala is fighting to get that statistic down to zero!

In her campaign, she has met with numerous heads of state, presidents, and world leader. Malala spoke at the United Nations on July 12, 2013. She promised to celebrate her birthday each year by bringing attention to the plight of girls around the globe.

In December 2014, Malala became the youngest Nobel Peace Prize laureate. This highest award of distinction is not the end of Malala’s work but the beginning.

What is the Malala Fund?

Established in 2013, the Malala Fund works to promote education access. The fund has a threefold purpose: Advocacy–Investing–Amplifying

  1. Advocacy- Malala fund seeks to shine a light on the crises worldwide preventing girls from being educated. In addition, it shows the difference a secondary education can make not only in one girls life but her community, country, and world
  2. Investing- Through the Gulmakai Network, the Malala fund provides support and funding to education champions in developing nations that are working to open school doors to girls.
  3. Amplifying- The Malala Funds works not to just tell her story, but the stories of millions of girls just like her. Through blog posts, the stories of girls are told in their own words.

Learn More:

To learn more about Malala and her fight or to support her with a donation, please check out the links below:

I am Malala Memoir by Malala, the youngest Nobel Peace Prize Recipient

Malala’s Magic Pencil by Malala a picture book of Malala’s story for younger children

Malala.org Malala Fund information and blog

Malala is not only a famous Nobel Peace Prize winner, but a student at Oxford, and a millionaire who has donated over a million of her own dollars to educate girls everywhere. Though her life has been transformed by her achievements, she seeks to let her achievements transform the lives of millions of girls just like her. As she has said, “I tell my story, not because it is unique, but because it is not, it is the story of many girls.”

How has Malala’s story touched or inspired you?

 

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light

Electric Education Part 2

Electricity is a blessing to education, as we explored earlier in the week.  Now let’s look at innovative ways that electricity is coming to remote places and building bridges to the future.

Innovative Supplies of Electricity

Bundles of Energy

Have you ever watched children play? They run, they jump, they seem to just never stop.  More than once each of us has joked about harnessing their energy to power a small city.  What if I told you the joke is now a reality.

Jump to It

When on a trip to visit family in Nigeria, Jessica O Matthews, founder of Uncharted Play(now Uncharted Power), struggled with the fumes from a diesel generator used to power the lights for her aunt’s wedding celebration.  Determined to find a way to solve the problem of energy sources in developing nations, Matthews got her chance in college and not only built a high scoring project with a few of her classmates for her engineering class, but founded a company.

Their first product SOCCKET is a soccer ball that is actually a generator.  It provided 2 hours of power for a lamp used by students to study in areas without electricity. Then there is PULSE a jump rope that can charge a cell phone to half power after just 15 minutes of use. Play become power.

Uncharted Power’s mission is to reach areas most in need of electricity with clean, easy to use generator options.

Shine Some Light on the Situation

Groups like Solar City are bringing brightness to developing areas of the world, including Mali Malawi, Nicaragua, and Haiti, through donating solar panels.  The solar panels are attached to school roofs or mounted on the ground. They power simple LED lights and include a battery back-up feature.

These panels allow for better access to education for children and parents, spreading not only light but hope.  A school in Nigeria that received the panels now functions as a community center at night.

Not only are the panels usable in areas that would never see on the grid electric, they are cost effective and clean–creating no harmful fumes.

Gravity Works

The GravityLight  uses a simple pulley system and sand bag to provide off the grid power anywhere.  Available for use as emergency lighting in the USA, Deciwatt Ltd funds donations of the GravityLight to those who need it most around the world.

The system provides clean energy that is much safer than kersene lamps, traditionally used in developing nations, and costs only $5! Aside from the dangerous fumes that cause health problems and make homes prone to disaster by fire; kerosene also consumes a large percentage of a developing world family’s budget–as much as 30%.

By using a clean, renewable, and safe source of light, children have more time to study and parents have more resources to provide for their family. Both help to break the cycle of poverty.

What’s Next?

With the advancements in solar and kinetic power generation, the hope of spreading light across the globe is closer than ever.  After all, who doesn’t want a magic machine to wash their clothes?

 

Electricity is only the beginning. By providing access to lighting, schools become open to adding technology. Currently, mobile phone usage is growing in developing nations more than anywhere else on the planet.

Mobile phones build bridges through providing communication to the most remote parts of the globe.  Phones are also used to increase literacy by providing incentive to learn to write and spell through texting and download information from the Internet.

No longer are remote school relegated to out of date textbooks.  Simple phones can open an entirely new world of information and learning.

It is important to not just jump on the bandwagon of technology donation, though, without the proper infrastructure and education, this technology is rendered useless. Program which can build, teach, and provide technology programs to underserved schools can be the key to bridging the gap in education worldwide.

As one school rises, so does an entire town, area, region, country, and generation.  Little by little, light by light, we can see a future where every child get to learn and poverty is extinguished.

How would you help a school in need?

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Why It Matters

Education is a human right.

 

No Way Out

Imagine being left in a box, a dark, sealed box with no means of escape.  You had just barely enough to keep you alive in way of oxygen and nourishment and that was it.  How long could you stay there?  How long would you want to stay there?

 

Lack of education and crippling poverty most often go hand in hand, they are wicked friends who hold so many captive throughout their lives.  Snatching opportunities to move beyond mere existence, the lack of resources for much of the world has keep generations in boxes of despair.

Education in History

Education is as old as time.  The process of passing skills on to the next generation, mentoring, apprenticing, inspiring discoveries is what makes us human.  Without education and the freedom to apply what is learned, our history would be very bleak.  Discoveries would not be made. Hypothesis would not be tested. Improvements would not be pursued. The edge of mere existence would be the fate of all.

 

The hallmark of a civilization is the accumulation and perpetuation of knowledge.  Civilized societies create languages, and a written system to record them.  Understanding of mathematics leads the way to an economy and commerce.  Our world has moved continually toward a deeper understanding and higher level of thinking, except for those who for socioeconomic reasons have been stripped of their rights to a civilized existence.

 

Education is not merely attending school, but being given the resources to move beyond surviving to thriving.  In the world of ultra-poverty, of complete devastation devoid of any resources, an education is an impossibility.

 

Opening the Trap

An opportunity to learn and grow not only enriches a life, but gives a person the means to live it.  The poorest of the poor do not only need more food, they need the know how to find and earn quality food.  More than their physical needs, their minds need to be fed to allow for thought, wonder, ingenuity, and reason.  Just as a body must be trained to perform athletically, a mind must be shaped and nurtured to perform on a higher academic plane.

 

Providing resources and opportunity for the world’s poor to be educated benefits the entire world as it is an investment in our collective future. That investment will pay off in dividends of cleaner environments, safer childhoods, healthier communities, problems solved, inventions created, conflicts settled, and stable families established.

 

Education of today’s children provides the means for them to provide sustenance, shelter, and stability to the children of tomorrow.  As One Planet, One People, it is paramount that we come together to build up cultures of learning through access to educational resources that build hope.

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Mary's Meals

Mary’s Meals

A Nickel’s Worth

What can you do with a nickel?  Could you change the future?  Could you build bridges?  Could you save lives and fuel dreams? You can if that nickel finds its way to a Mary’s Meals collection campaign.

 

Founded on the principle that food+school=hope, Mary’s Meals feeds over a million children each day and has revolutionized the war on hunger.  The concept is so easy, anyone, including young children, can make a difference.

 

How Mary’s Meals Works

In 2002, Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, founder of Mary’s Meals, was on a service trip to Malawi.  There he met a young boy named Edward.  Edward’s one life wish was to have enough to eat and go to school. Out of this request, the idea of Mary’s Meals was born.

 

Inspired by the words of Mother Teresa, “If you can’t feed one hundred children, just feed one.” Magnus set out to feed children one good meal a day at a place of education, thus feeding their bodies and minds.  Soon he was feeding 200 children a day in Malawi with 93% of all donations going directly to feeding children.

 

The simple porridge, Likuni Phala, is served in large plastic mugs to the children each day. The mugs are so prized that many children wear them on strings hung around their necks so as not to lose them.  This simple blend of ingredients is prepared in a dedicated kitchen built at the school by Mary’s Meals

 

All of the kitchens are staffed by local volunteers and supplied with local goods to create a simple, but highly nutritious porridge for the students of the school where the kitchen is housed. Using local sources keeps the cost of feeding down while investing in the community.  By coming to school, the children receive life saving food, and a life altering education.

 

The Little School with Big Dreams

In 2014, a small, Catholic school in New York embarked on a mission to build a Mary’s Meals kitchen in Malawi.  Inspired by the movie Child 31, the students held nickel drives and fundraisers.  In just four months, they raised the $11,500 to build a kitchen at Dzungwi school, Malawi but it didn’t stop there.

 

Mary’s Meals became such a part of the school’s culture that a Mary’s Meals club was born.

Throughout the year, the children meet dressed in their signature blue Mary’s Meals shirts to sort and count the money raised each month to feed keep the kitchen running.  As part of the club, students learn more about their sister school in Malawi, exchange letters, videos, and photos; and even learn to play the same games that entertain their faraway friends.

 

Last year, St. Stephen St Edwards School raised over $20,000 by collecting deposit cans and bottles, holding nickel drives, selling popcorn each Wednesday, selling giftware, and more.  Through their efforts, a second kitchen was adopted in Liberia that is now fully funded by the club.

Building Bridges One Nickel at a Time

The Mary’s Meals Club has built a bridge for children in a semi-rural town to learn and grow.  Their worldview has expanded, and their connection to others on the opposite side of the world has solidified.  The efforts of serving and understanding have benefited the children in the club as well as those they fundraise to feed. Likewise, the simple meals that are being provided in two countries thanks to this club are building bridges to the bright futures for the recipient children.

 

This is what One Planet, One People is all about.  Journeying together in hope and knowledge to a promising future.  Building a bridge isn’t hard.  Just start one brick at a time, one child at a time.  Inspiring youth to serve others and support global education is one of the greatest lessons we can offer.

 

St Stephen-St Edward school has not just found a hobby, it has discovered its mission.  It is currently one of the largest and longest running fundraising campaigns for Mary’s Meals in the world.  It all started with a simple idea, let’s help bring hope to a child in need.

 

How are you spreading the light of education to the world?  Be the spark that chases the dark. Help those most in need and build a bridge to a better world!

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Overcoming Obstacles

NELSON MANDELA

Overcoming Educational Obstacles

 

Many of us are lucky to have had the biggest obstacle to our education be ourselves. There was a time that this wasn’t the norm. For much of human history, we have had to overcome significant obstacles to obtain knowledge. In the US, many have heard the “I had to walk five miles uphill to get to school”. Perhaps, our grandparents were trying to impress upon us the gift that our ease of education is. There are still parts of the world that haven’t knocked down as many of these obstacles though. Places that educate based on some factor that the individual has no control over. Places where war has prevented education from being a safe thing, as shown in this article.

Admittedly, this is old information, but the concept that in 2016 WAR was what prevents children from receiving an education is heartbreaking to say the least. Not enough has changed to make that untrue in 2017. Education, which we firmly believe builds a bridge for children to access a better future, should be available to all people. Nelson Mandela emphasized the importance of distance education to overcoming obstacles in South Africa and the same is true all over the world. You can listen to his speech here.

 

Today, there are opportunities for children in primary and secondary schools to learn via distance education. Additionally, schools around the world offer distance education options. This opens the door for those who are homebound, unable to travel great distances or unable to handle the stress or stimulation from a traditional education to overcome and achieve their educational goals. Nelson Mandela recognized this two decades ago but as a people, we are just beginning to fully embrace it. If we could provide distance education options (even books for them to learn at their own pace from) to the South Sudanese children mentioned above, we would be opening them to a whole new world. Hopefully, that would be their bridge to a better future.

 

Organizations like War Child, support mothers and children in war torn countries. One of the most important ways is to educate them. This way, they can read the important signs…

Danger – Landmines

Putting it in perspective, no obstacle I have met is half as hard as a child in Sudan. It’s time to build bridges and share with those around us the ways we have found that help us overcome our educational obstacles.

How do you overcome obstacles? Feel free to suggest a distance education provider!

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Why One Planet, One People

Why is our theme One Planet, One People?  The answer is simple yet very complex.  We are all on the same journey around the sun each day.  As the planet spins beneath our feet, our lives continue in regular rhythms that are so alike, despite our appeared differences.

 

Learning is the tie that binds us together, to our past and to our future.  Lessons that will ensure survival, break down walls, and build up rubble.  Our understanding of history, as well as science, and math, is essential to fixing all the problems that plague our modern society.

 

The ability to effectively communicate and problem solve, born of a good education that is rooted in quality literature, creative thinking, innovative exploration, and the arts, both practical and fine, is the mortar that will bridge the gap over what divides us.  Through a pursuit of lifelong education, we each contribute to making changes for the positive on this planet of ours.

 

One Planet, One People is not just our motto, it is our reality.  Do you want to see a better tomorrow?  Invest in understanding the “why” of our present age and then innovate a “how” to fix it.  We all share a common history and the unifying desire to make a difference. Help us expand this desire, your participation and presentations are an integral part of our mission.

 

One Planet, One People is a double sided call to action.  It first asks you to consider what you must study to open your own mind to possibilities, not yet thought, to improve our blue home. Secondly, it begs you to reach beyond your own little world and unite, to greater understand your neighbor, and to carry the torch of freedom born of knowledge to the far corners of the world.

 

This is the mission of Global Learn Day, to reach and to teach.  Not just on October 7th, but every trip around the sun.  It is our hope that this voyage will inspire every passenger to dive deeper into his own self improvement and help the tide to rise all ships that all may get to learn. Join us for our voyage!

What do you think when you are One Planet, One People?

 

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