The thought of building a country of 12 million people from the ground up is daunting. Where do you begin? With no infra-structure (sewer systems or electric power grid), the task is utopian.
Knowing that knowledge is the basic building block that is at the beginning of everything, and realizing that no advanced educational institutions exist in the entire country of South Sudan, we at empowerkids South Sudan have sponsored a number of very bright young men and women who graduated from secondary school with very high exam grades to attend Bridge2Rwanda in Kigale, Rwanda.
Bridge2Rwanda currently educates 40 students for 10 months, focused solely upon English, mathematics, and science. The intent: to prepare these students to succeed
in gaining full scholarships into some of the finest colleges and universities in the world. The hope: these students will return to South Sudan, with excellent university educations, prepared to help build a brighter South Sudan.
South Sudan’s educational system was disrupted dramatically, beginning in the 1950’s when civil war erupted. This civil war continued for decades, during which time meaningful energy and capital into the basic components any civil society delivers to the populace—including education—were limited at best. Naturally, the lack of meaningful across-the-board outcomes were quite predictable.
In an effort to help jump-start South Sudan’s capacity to deliver higher-quality outcomes from their educational system, we at empowerkidsSouthSudan funded 13 South Sudanese teachers (plus 1 from Rwanda) from both public and private schools for one semester at Arizona State University in Phoenix where they were exposed to 21st century teaching techniques.