Famous for its unique flora and fauna, Madagascar remains one of the poorest countries on earth with more than 80% of the population living on less than $2 per day and 50% of children under 5 suffering from malnutrition and stunting (World Bank 2018). For thirty years, MfM has been helping communities in Madagascar to fight poverty and transform their lives. Investing in the education and training of both children and adults is at the heart of our work.
Our integrated ‘Education for Life’ Programme helps remote rural schools to tackle the huge obstacles to primary education; providing classrooms, toilets and water as well as books, teacher training, school kitchen gardens and school canteens. Now the time has come to give the parents some help. Over 20% of the parents at the schools we work with are struggling with illiteracy. This makes it hard to support the studies of their children. Being illiterate also makes it hard for parents to earn enough money to pay school fees – forcing many bright kids to drop-out. To help keen students stay in school and improve their life chances, we need to help their parents too.
Thanks to Better World Books we are launching a pilot literacy scheme for parents at 3 of our ‘Education for Life’ schools. The grant will pay for training and resources, including a TV and DVD player at each school to support learning. Whilst parents will be the focus of this new activity, students will of course benefit from the new books and audio-visual facilities to support their classes. If this pilot project is successful then we would love to roll this opportunity out to many more schools.
“We are very happy to receive help from ‘Better World Books’. Thank you for helping our children with their studies and thank you for even thinking of helping us, the parents. Even here in rural Madagascar, we are very keen to help our children to get an education. But it is so difficult. As parents, we want to be able to support our children in their studies, but we are sad to say that many of us do not know how to read or write ourselves. Therefore, we are very happy to hear that Money for Madagascar with Better World Books will be helping to provide classes and resources to help us to learn to read and write. We can’t wait to be able to assist our children in their studies. Literacy will open many other doors too. It will help us to learn new skills and help us to earn a living to support our families. Thank you for this gift which brings us hope for a better future.”
Irenee Rajaona-Horne, Charity Development Officer