The power is ON! The children at the Children’s Center read books, did their home work, and chatted into the night last week as the power was turned on and light radiated throughout the rooms. Their reaction was pure joy and excitement – their world changed for the better with a convenience which most of us take for granted.
The majority of the funding for the Solar Power was donated by the Retail Orphan Initiative (ROI) organization. ROI members are leaders from the Retail industry who have a heart for orphans’ worldwide continue to be committed and to assist in critical needs for the Children’s Center in 2015.
Our partnership with the Children’s Center includes the monthly financial support of the 73 children in residence, and the projects that improve their living conditions. We continue to seek donors to support a child for $40 per month.
To support a child for $40 visit http://www.congovoice.org/ways-to-donate
The children used to gather on the floor around a candle to study. Now they are finishing homework with lights above. After just a few weeks of lights, the children’s school test scores have risen an average 20% with their ability to do more homework in the evenings.
Aruftu works for Mission Aviation Fellowship and traveled specifically to Gemena to install solar electricity for the Children's Center. We are grateful for his work and commitment.
Ubangi Protestant University (UPU)
Graduation – 2014
Three-hundred and forty-five students made up the 2014 graduating class of Ubangi Protestant University (UPU); over 1000 family and friends joined them to celebrate their achievement.
UPU has become a beacon of HOPE and OPPORTUNITY in the Congo – and the Gemena area. Our partnership with UPU includes providing scholarship funds for deserving students, financial resources to develop & deliver outstanding educational content, and launching micro financed business ventures by the students to create a sustainable local economy. Our student enrollment is climbing 30% next year to 800 students. UPU is making an immense impact on the local community and driving towards a sustainable economy.
The graduation was a great milestone and testimony to the effectiveness of your generosity to UPU.
What’s Next? - The Vision
We have made outstanding progress through the financial resources that you have donated since CongoVoice was started two years ago. We are delivering HOPE to the lives of thousands of children and students in the Gemena area.
Our Congolese partners aspire to create a better life and are dreaming BIG! Their dreams include:
- One of the key properties in central Gemena became available for purchase and one of our donors funded the acquisition of the property for use as a Community Center. A plan has been developed to remodel that existing structure to launch 3 key uses described below - This requires $20,000 for the remodeling costs.
- Provide UPU classrooms and teaching in central Gemena that will double the number of students that can receive life changing education & training.
- Launch the first general public Internet Café within hundreds of miles, (UPU students have conceived and will operate the café for profit). – We need 10 laptop computers & network servers – estimated cost is $9,000.
- a.Provide an onsite coach / mentor accessible for the entrepreneurs to provide support for their business ideas. We need the first years cost covered - $15,000.
- A.Installing high-speed access to the Internet to the UPU campus would forever change our ability to deliver French based educational content to the students. We need $8,000 per year for data access.
- A.Develop the Children’s Center facility – it is essential to build a local water well to gain access to clean water (estimate is $15,000) – we need to expand the kitchen facilities to support the increased number of children (estimate is $6,000)– we need to add a nursery facility to the current center to meet the need of providing for infant care (estimate is $10,000).
- A.Institute a proven and innovative educational approach to address the early childhood educational challenges based on partnering with the staff of seedsofempowerment.org. We need 40 tablet computers to start this effort – estimated cost $12,000.
Seeds of Empowerment SMILE program: Children using mobile technology to learn multiple disciplines.
Thank you for your past and ongoing support to meet the needs of the people of the Congo. We’re asking for your continuing support by selecting one of the needs listed above and going to www.congovoice.org and designate your donation.