Mission One, Ebenezer Primary
A Vision for Better Education in an East African Village
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The Village of Tamu Needed Help
About Mission ONE
Mission ONE is a faith-based organization that creates strategic and thoughtful solutions to help transform communities for the better. When a community’s survival is on the line because of war, oppression, or natural disaster, Mission ONE’s goal is to provide immediate help and support. Mission ONE meets the real needs of people across the globe in the hour they need relief the most.
NutraMedix has had a long-standing relationship with Mission ONE. We deeply believe in their missions and strategic projects, especially their work in providing support for businesses, schools, and medical facilities in communities where the need is greatest. We are grateful to know that our donations to their initiatives are helping to give people hope.
In villages in rural Kenya, joblessness is a major contributing factor in alcoholism, domestic abuse, prostitution, child abandonment, and more. The village of Tamu is no stranger to these sufferings. That’s When Mission ONE stepped in.
In rural Kenya in the village of Tamu, children often don’t have the access to proper or consistent education. Those who do have the option often attend antiquated, underfunded schools that don’t provide the education needed for students to continue their learning. Unfortunately, this causes children to grow up uneducated or illiterate, with little prospect of providing for themselves.
While primary school enrollment in Kenya can be compared to western nations like the United States, when it comes to children moving on to secondary schools, enrollment plummets to 50%. This creates an environment where children and young adults simply cannot compete with those who are more educated, resulting in not only a limited job pool, but little to no chance to continue their education.
The Problem — Education in Kenya is Complicated
The village of Tamu currently only has two options for school: one government-run and one privately-run primary school. Unfortunately, neither school is adequately preparing children to move on to the next level of their education due to a major lack of funding. Mission ONE’s partner runs the private school, Ebenezer Academy, which has fallen into disrepair—not from lack of care, but from lack of resources. From out-of-date curriculum, to the unmanageable building itself, it had become harder and harder to run the school and continue to provide education the children of this rural village so desperately needed.
This story is the same for so many rural Kenyan schools. And while private schools offer a slightly better experience than public schools in the area, there are still not enough teachers for the number of students who are attending. Many parents make the decision to pull their children from public school settings and place them in private schools to give them the chance at a better education, at high financial burden. On top of this, most private schools are located away from the village and must be traveled to. But, to avoid such severe overcrowding and the poor quality of teachers, many parents and children are left with little to no choice but to give their children the education that is available to them, no matter how bad, how expensive, or how far it may be.
The Plan — Breathing New Life into the Ebenezer Primary School
The goal was to help rebuild the Ebenezer Primary School in Tamu to be attractive enough for the wealthy families to send their children, while still fostering an environment for students from less fortunate families to attend. Tuition would factor in frequent upgrades needed to maintain facilities and the curriculum, as well as salary for high-quality teachers. The curriculum would be focused on preparing students for the next level of education and setting them on a path towards better job opportunities as adults, with an emphasis on pride for their home village and the education it provided them.
Mission ONE got right to work updating the current school’s facilities and curriculum. New teachers were hired to improve standards and to keep up with the growing population of students. Through word of mouth and a grassroots-driven campaign, more and more individuals in the village began learning of the initiative to update the Ebenezer Primary School. A community leadership council was formed to that also helped to financially support the school, which demonstrated value to the community and to the parents.
Most high-reputation schools in Kenya are boarding schools.
In the second phase of the project, Mission ONE included the introduction of a boarding aspect to the school. The boarding facilities improved the image of the Ebenezer Primary School and its revitalized reputation throughout the region, which increased enrollment of students from higher-income families in nearby villages.
Mission ONE’s Desired Impact — Access to Continued and Quality Education
The long-term goal for the Ebenezer Primary School was for families in Tamu, Kenya, to finally have access to sustainable, quality education. The school was intended to renew pride in their community—families would now have the ability to send their child to a highly rated school, rather than having to send them hours away to a private boarding school with no guarantee for a proper education.
Now, parents would have options of quality education. The school also offers scholarships to families that may not have a steady enough income to meet tuition.
As Ebenezer Academy encourages change in the community, the goal is that the public school will begin to raise its standards as well—following in the footsteps of the private institution and drawing better educators and more funding to the region. For the first time, families with low means have options to keep their children educated.
How Mission ONE is Measuring Success
Mission ONE set goals for the newly reimagined Ebenezer Primary School to measure the success of their efforts with the following goals:
For 75% of students to qualify for secondary education by the end of the 2nd year of its reopening.
- Enrollment to surpass 100 students at that time.
- For the student/teacher ratio to be no greater than 20 to 1.
The school will sustain itself through tuition, boarding fees, and local philanthropy by the end of the 2nd year of reopening.
- 25% of students will receive scholarships.
- Savings to increase each year of existence.
Why We Do What We Do
Stories like this are typical in rural villages around the world. By partnering with organizations such as Mission ONE, we have the power to help support and uplift these communities and give them a chance at something better.
While the school was initially built to much celebration from the village, there was no long-term plan for its continued success. But this time, there’s a plan in place to revive the school starting with tangible goals and a dedicated faculty.
An Ongoing Initiative
The Ebenezer Primary School is still in its first year of reopening, but the new and improved school should be fully operational by August 2021. There are currently about 50 students enrolled in the school but the number does fluctuate while under construction and working through updating the current curriculum.
Want to support Mission ONE yourself? Donate to them directly and make sure to check out their work around the world.