Scholars Empowerment Program

 

A quality primary education is essential but not enough in this evolving world. We envision a world where every child can access higher education to be able to reach his or her full potential in life; breaking the cycle of poverty in Ariang. Since 2011, we have an average of 45 students sit annually for the National Primary Examination at the completion of eighth grade, with an increasing passing rate each year. After finishing at Ariang, the future is unclear for many students due to many obstacles in their way.

Challenges Facing the Community

Lack of School Fees

This prevents our graduates from joining senior schools. Unlike universal primary school, secondary schools are not free in South Sudan. Many families cannot afford to send their children, especially girls, to high school. Those who manage to join, drop out of school during their second or third year mainly due to lack of financial support. Other contributing factors 

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include lack of school equipment such as uniforms, books, and basic upkeep items which amount to stress and dropout.

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Early Marriages

Girls face even more obstacles compared to boys. Some parents see a 12-year-old girl as property and long to marry her off to get cows as dowry. It is believed that a girl is highly priced when she is between 12 and 18 years. This is school-going age and in South Sudan, a 12-year old is likely in 4th up to 6th grade. Once a girl marries, she is much less likely to continue her 

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education. We also see examples at Ariang Primary of young girls who are married off early but still manage to complete their primary education which is commendable. The possibilities for them to continue their high school education, however, is greatly reduced due to responsibilities of child-rearing and other family obligations.

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Generational Poverty

The community of Ariang is recovering from decades of war. Most of the older generation did not get an education. Therefore, a very small percentage are eligible for skilled jobs. The majority of people in the community engage in farming and animal rearing. The methods of farming are still very traditional and the reap is usually barely enough to sustain their families for 6 months.

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 For these, alongside many other reasons, most families in the community can hardly afford to raise money for school fees. This generational poverty often means that the parents don’t support their children to go beyond their achievements. If a parent reached primary 8 and got married, he or she expects their children to follow the same path.

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Lack of Secondary Schools

Without a secondary school in any nearby communities, it is uncertain if students will manage to continue their education. Students are forced to commute long distances to get to school. The schools are usually congested and lack academically qualified teachers and teaching equipment. Teacher-student ratio is another factor that affects the few available secondary schools.

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 Our aim is to place our students in the best performing, and affordable schools in the area.

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To Help!

We have stepped in to help more students, with a focus on girls. Students with promising potential now have the opportunity for a secondary school sponsorship.  A rigorous application process ensures that we select students who are committed to their continued education. We partner closely with the scholars’ families, to ensure greater support and commitment.

There are 3 types of scholarship options we offer in the Scholar’s Empowerment Program; affordable private schools with boarding for our girls, private day schools, and local day schools. The school fees range between $200 – $400 annually.

You can make a direct impact on the life of one student by becoming a monthly sponsor or a one-time annual donor. There are 3 sponsorship levels by which you can help a student finish high school and set them up on a path towards future success:

Advocate ($20 a month)

An Ariang Advocate provides one student with:

  • School fees for a local secondary day school
  • Uniform
  • Books and supplies
  • Tutoring support during school holidays

Since closest secondary school is Akon, a three-hour walking distance from Ariang, students usually find accommodations with relatives during weekdays. Your sponsorship ensures that he or she is provided with meals in the evening.

Ambassador ($30 a month)

An Araing Ambassador provides one student with:

  • School fees for a local private secondary school
  • Uniform
  • Books and supplies
  • Meals

A private secondary school often offers better quality education with more qualified teachers and better resources and facilities. Sponsored students at the Ambassador level are accepted to private schools in Akon and Kuajok.

Champion for Girls ($40 a month)

An Ariang Champion for Girls enables a girl to:

  • Stay in hostels where they are provided with a safe and conducive home environment.
  • Attend a private school during the day and in the evenings and weekends, an older female role model supports the girls with their studies and holistic development.
  • Access empowerment programs where the girls get opportunities to explore future career possibilities, develop leadership skills, and receive extra support in their studies.

Becoming a Champion for Girls will save a girl from early marriage and help her to reach her full potential!

Sponsor a student now! Subscribe to a Monthly Donation!

Make a difference in someone’s life by giving them a lifetime gift of education. Meet some of our students that your sponsorship will support! Be sure to check back soon as we accept more students in the Scholars Empowerment Program.

Monica Awut

Monica Awut is 17 years old. She graduated from Ariang School in 2017 and joined Akon Secondary School in 2018. She was the second best performing student in the zone.

Her brother paid her school fees this year, but his continued support is not possible. Monica says that she would be at home helping her mother with cultivation if she was not in school.

She wants to be the first Woman president in South Sudan.

Santino Luil

Luil comes from a town that borders Sudan and South Sudan; a region that experiences frequent tribal clashes which succeeded the prolonged period of civil wars. The wars have left this area without a school so he joined Ariang School when he was in Grade 2. After graduating, we helped him join Akon Modern secondary by buying him a uniform and paying his senior one fees. However, Luil has faced lots of obstacles since his family is unable to raise fees for the remaining years.

Mary Abuk

Mary Abuk is 17 years old and a last born in a family of four. She is sitting for her primary school national exams this year. She is passionate about education and performs very well in class. Mary decided to put marriage life aside, despite pressures, to concentrate on her studies first. She hopes to bring a positive impact to her community-especially women and girls. Due to her family’s financial challenges, she is unsure if she will be able to enroll in a high school.

Make a One-time Annual Sponsorship!

If you would like to clear a student’s full-year school fees once, this is your space.