We all want to have a social impact, whether we want to start a neighborhood garden or provide clean water in sub-Saharan Africa. And yet, for many of us, we hesitate. We might be afraid or feel ill equipped. Or we might feel like we do not have the time. Sometimes it takes a significant emotional event to shake us up and to send us on a journey to social impact. Duncan Ward has just such a story.
After the death of his brother, Duncan picked up his backpack and set off into the world to find meaning and purpose. While traveling in Cambodia, Duncan met Racky. Racky is a former child slave in the Pol Pot regime. Because Racky understand the importance of education, he uses his money to provide education for local children.
With a little investigation, Duncan found out just how big of a problem the lack of access to education is. 121 million children of primary and secondary education age do not have access to schools. 250 million children globally cannot read or write. Duncan also found that UNICEF has a standard for judging the health of a school called the Child Friendly School. UNICEF provides a standard assessment for rating schools on a range from 0 - 100.
One of the secrets of success of Classroom of Hope is that they do not try to solve the problem of access to education alone. They develop "smartnerships" with the best local organizations who have the vision, drive and community standing to create change.
In 2015, Classroom of Hope completed their first programs with a batch of 15 schools. At the beginning of the program, the schools on average received a rating of 36% child friendly. After completing the Classroom of Hope program, the schools averaged a score of 79% child friendly. In these same schools, dropout rates went from 10% to 2%.
In this interview on Social Entrepreneur, Duncan Ward shares his journey and the lessons he has learned along the way.
Something Simple You can Do:
If you are inspired by this story, here is something simple that you can do.
You can retweet this: https://twitter.com/TonyLoyd/status/702248382983708672
Or you can go to the Classroom of Hope web site and pick your favorite picture to tweet out. Be sure to tag Classroom of Hope.
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