Expanding access to education is at the core of the Cultures of Resistance Network‘s vision for change. A robust education system is the cornerstone of any meaningful, participatory democracy, and providing educational opportunities to those who are otherwise excluded is a critical step towards establishing greater democratic rights for all. Particularly in contexts where power is concentrated in the hands of the few, or where war has shaken the foundations of society and government, education fosters the critical analysis and technical skills that are needed to bring about political change. Here, we highlight a few scholarship programs that are opening doors for students who ordinarily wouldn’t get a shot at an education.
Creating Education Opportunities for Pakistan’s Poorest Children
Expanding Access to Education for East Timor’s Most Vulnerable Youth
Empowering the Next Generation of Women Innovators in Pakistan
From birth, girls in Pakistan face barriers to education and financial independence. Around 4.5 million Pakistani girls are barred completely from attending school—but many young women are rising up. The Dawood Global Foundation, through its platform Ladiesfund, supports girls’ education through scholarships and the empowerment of women entrepreneurs through career support and business partnerships. With over 12,000 members—including award-winning filmmakers, members of the National Assembly, and other Pakistani luminaries—Ladiesfund is a powerful force in bringing women into positions of leadership in Pakistan. Most recently, Dawood and Ladiesfund supported the Educate a Girl – Mission 1000 campaign, which aimed to provide vocational media studies training to over a thousand girls. The Cultures of Resistance Network supported fifty scholarships in 2014 and another fifty in 2015. Visit Dawood or Ladiesfund online to see how you can contribute. This can include anything from getting involved with Ladiesfund’s Student Advisory Board to internships and mentoring programs. Watch the video below to learn more about Educate a Girl:
Building the Next Democratic Generation in Burma
Creating New Opportunities for Young Refugees of the Iraq War
Resisting Natural and Political Disasters in Haiti
Expanding Women’s Education in Afghanistan
Rebuilding Classrooms and Futures in Somalia
Fostering Human Rights Leaders From Conflict Zones
Schooling for Peace in Kashmir
Raising AIDS Awareness in South Africa
Educating Orphans and Refugees of War in Afghanistan
As a result of the US-led invasion and occupation of their country, tens of thousands of Afghan citizens have died, whether as casualties of military actions or through starvation and disease. Many of those killed have left behind orphaned children who must fend for themselves to maintain a home and care for their siblings. Such difficult circumstances put childhood development at serious risk, which is why the non-profit Omeid International works to provide the building blocks of a healthy life to Afghanistan’s war orphans. By providing safe housing, health care, and an education to these young people, Omeid hopes to contribute to the next generation’s confidence and its ability to rebuild its ravaged country.
In addition to leaving thousands of children orphaned, the war in Afghanistan also created one of the worst refugee crises in recent decades, only recently surpassed in its urgency by the Syrian civil war. As of 2015, some 2.7 million Afghan refugees continue to live in exile, primarily in neighboring Iran and Pakistan. At the end of 2015, Pakistan was home to 1.5 million Afghan refugees. At its RUMI International School, the Khubaib Foundation provides quality education to children of the Afghan refugee camp in Haripur, Pakistan, including a basic literacy program for thousands of children and a sewing program for women. Committed to supporting Pakistan’s most vulnerable people—including orphans, refugees, prisoners, widows, and the destitute poor—the Khubaib Foundation also leads projects such as the Khubaib College Haripur, which was established in 2008 with an emphasis on providing an education to orphans of the 2005 earthquake. To learn about volunteer opportunities like mentoring and organizing donation drives, click here.
Breaking the Cycle of Poverty in the Congo
Providing Education to the Children of Samburu Rape Victims
For more than fifty years, the UK has maintained military training facilities in the Samburu region of its former colony, Kenya. Women there have faced an epidemic of sexual violence at the hands of the soldiers, and they have filed more than 600 official rape claims. Despite the overwhelming evidence, Britain’s Royal Military Police (RMP) has cleared all soldiers of wrongdoing and has quashed past efforts to seek justice for these women. Many women have been outcast from their communities due to social stigma, often harming their abilities to provide for their children. Along with ally organizations in Kenya, the CoR Network has helped to establish a primary and secondary school scholarship for the children of rape victims. Through these efforts, more than two dozen students have had the chance to attend school at the primary and secondary levels. A small donation can make a huge difference in creating opportunities for a child whose family has faced the burden of exclusion and social stigma. Please email us at campaigns [at] culturesofresistance.org if you would like to contribute to this important fund.
[Featured image courtesy of SOPUDEP.]