My name is Max, and I am writing tonight not only as a member of the board of Tusubira, but as an idealist, a dreamer, and a believer that small changes and efforts over time can make a big impact. Let me share some numbers with you:
34 - The % of Ugandans who enroll in Secondary School
71 - # of pupils at YANA Community High School
25 - The cost of one student's term
Take a moment to look at that - $25. That's it. My friend today was browsing umbrellas for that price online. I can think of so many things I pay for $25 or more that I could live without, one tank of gas, one meal at a restaurant, that taxi ride to the airport. But to give a child a chance at an education can have an impact much greater than any of us can imagine.
Having worked in the education sector in Uganda and now in New York City, I know just how valuable a quality, community-centered secondary education can be. Our model offers something both innovative and groundbreaking by not simply outsourcing great students to far-off schools in big cities, but bringing the education to the community and utilizing the strengths of a community. When I lived in Uganda less than 2 years ago, I witnessed the power of communities. People working together can ingeniously overcome so many obstacles and as we seek to harness the power of communities, I believe that we are setting afoot to a new hope for these children.
I joined the work of Tusubira two years ago when I met with Carol Bogezi in a traffic jam in Kampala. Learning about this work of investing in communities through students and women was deeply intriguing, but having studied and worked in this sector myself I always view development work with skepticism. I will refrain from sharing all the stories, but I will state that the work Tusubira is doing aims to be a model for excellence in community-led development. I would not devote my time and energy to an organization that was not doing work that is not dedicated to real, long-term change for communities.
Only a few months ago, YANA CHS did not exist. Today we have 71 youth become scholars. An education is not simply about learning, but can reshape a community. Will you contribute to help ensure that children continue to grow and flourish?