This weekend the girls and I hit the soccor park to raise money for our partner school in Kenya. We took the bracelets that they had made along with some lemonade to tempt thirsty potential donors. We were not there for long and it did not take much of our day, but we did raise enough to send a few more children to school! We met really great partents and interested youth. It was fun to tell them about some of our experiences with the kids in Kenya and the School Ties project.
We did come across one rather grumpy man who cast a slight shadow over our good feelings for only a moment, but I think it was an important moment and something that should be talked about.
The girls invited the man over for some lemonade and he seemed interested until he saw our sign, “Lemon AID for Africa.” At this point he turned and said, “Not for Africa.” Huh? What? The girls were pretty confused why their perspective donor had pivoted away and why he had said, “Not for Africa.” They both looked to me for an answer. Perhaps there is a great answer out there, but I didn’t have one. I am not sure why this man decided against a cold lemonade on a hot day when he realized that the donated money would not be kept in our pockets but instead given to children who need it more.
This question snowballs into more questions like, “Do we feel it our responsibility to help people in a different country? Should we only worry about our own families and communities? Why do the children in Africa need this lemonade money more than children here in the United States? What part do we each play in assisting those in need?
Again, I don’t have all of the answers to all of these questions for everyone. I just hope that the questions are asked, thought about, studied out, and hopefully a personal conclusion reached.
Today we held our first humanitarian club meeting at Reynolds Elementary. We talked about humanitarian work, global awerness, current world issues, and how we can learn more about the world around us. I was surprised to hear that the kids are very aware of ISIS and Ebola. We talked about how those issues affect us in the United States and the rest of the world.
We met our partner school in Nairobi, Kenya and looked at some picutres they sent showing their school and lives. We talked about how we are different, how we are the same, and how we can work together.
We also started our MONSTER ECHANGE. Our kids drew a picture of a monster. They then had to write a description of the monster. We will send the description ONLY to our partner school. Using the description the children in Kenya will draw a monster. When we meet up to Skype we will be able to show each other the monsters we have come up with! It will be fun to see how they are the different and the same!
School Ties is looking to expand to your neck of the woods! We currently have FOUR international schools waiting to partner with your school here in the US!
(in no particular order)
The Falkland Islands. What? Where is that? Want your kids to know? Down at the very tip of South America children are waiting to reach out and get to know you too!
Ghana. This school in West Africa already has bracelets ready to go! One teacher at the school wrote,
“Actually we are going through a lot of challenges and problems as a school to extend that some children stay out of school because they don’t have basic learning materials like pencils, pens, exercise books and others to use at school, let alone money to buy food sometimes.”
They hope to buy the school’s first computer with money earned from bracelet sells. In the mean time, they are willing to walk to a nearby internet cafe to skype!
Ghana. This school in Accra is full of enthusiasm to learn. They are all set up for skype and email. The lead teacher has tons of educational ideas to share with their partner school.
Liberia. Did you know that Liberia and America go way back? I’m sure you’ll find out more when you partner with a school full of students ready send pictures and letters about their lives. This school does not have skype and emailing is limited, but they would love to be involved in the School Ties project in an effort to raise money to add a computer to their school.
Let’s see what we can do!
Please comment, text, email, or call me if you are interested in getting involved!
Although we have been on a bit of a summer hiatus, the children in Nairobi have been hard at work. They are making new bracelets to sell come the start of another school year.
We would like to have a few summer fund raisers. Please email if interested
Bracelet sells are in from Idaho! The entire 5th grade at Emmett MIddle School, in Emmett, Idaho, worked together to earn money for their partner school in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. They advertised bracelet sales around the school and then spent … Continue reading →
“Our times demand a new definition of leadership – global leadership. They demand a new constellation of international cooperation – governments, civil society and the private sector, working together for a collective global good.”
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
Speech at World Economic Forum
Davos, Switzerland (29 January 2009)