Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day and think of all the money you’re saving not buying an ungrateful cheater chocolates and flowers. Consider using the cost savings to help a 12-year-old girl, Annabel, start school instead. Annabel would appreciate your gifts. Cheaters, not so much.
Chump Nation has a big heart, as I learned during our “Buy an Orphan a Book or Some Sparkly Shoes” campaign last November. For those of you just tuning in, my friend LeAnna Marr is stationed as a USAID officer in South Sudan. Last Christmas, in lieu of giving or receiving gifts, she asked for donations to an orphan school in Juba and posted her Amazon wish list to her friends. Unbeknownst to her, I posted that wish list here, and Chump Nation filled the list and then some! within 24 hours, bringing needed shoes, toys, and books to the kids. (See pictures here.)
Well, I hate to go to the well too many times, but guys, if you feel moved I’m asking you to help again. LeAnna has started an Indiegogo campaign to help one of the school girls, Annabel (her name has been changed to protect her privacy), receive an education in Uganda. I can personally vouch for LeAnna and the good work she’s doing in South Sudan.
Annabel is deaf. Life is very difficult in a refugee camp, especially if you are a girl (if you want the horrifying particulars, read this State Department report) — and especially if you are a girl with a disability. Annabel was brought to the school LeAnna volunteers at run by Confident Children Out of Conflict. They were able to get her medical help and eventually a place at a school for the deaf in Uganda. But her tuition and expenses are $3,500 a year. While she has a place, she doesn’t have funding. Enter LeAnna and her Indiegogo campaign.
If you think being a chump is humiliating, try starting school for the first time at age 12, sitting in the second grade. Above is a picture of Annabel (the tall girl) being welcomed at her new school in Uganda. This kid is an example to us all of resiliency. If she can be mighty, we can too.
Please consider giving here. Every bit helps, and heck, your money will go much farther than a reconciliation book bought on Amazon or lame cheater chocolates.
Tomorrow I’ll announce the Valentine’s Day poem winners.
She was referred to Confident Children out of Conflict (CCC) interim care facility because she was unaccompanied and at risk. It turned out she was also physically unwell and deaf. She never had hope of going to school, because in South Sudan there are no schools for children with hearing impairments.
Last year Annabel attended an end of year school event with some of the other girls from CCC. She watched three of her friends from CCC receive awards for excellent performance. The experience sparked a strong desire in her to go to school.
After an extensive search, the Executive Director and Founder of CCC, Cathy Groenendijk, found a specialized school in neighboring Uganda, the Mulago School for the Deaf, which seems to be ideal for Annabel.
Without any formal schooling, Annabel will need to start in second grade with children much younger than herself. Although she stood out because she was twice the size and average age of the other children in her class, she refused to let it get in her way. She went through a series of emotions: excitement, anxiety, fear… but remained calm and hopeful. She was admitted in the boarding section and bid Cathy farewell and promised to do her best.
CCC has sent Annabel to her new school on a wing and a prayer. Annabel needs $3,500 a year for five years to keep her in this school.
This amount will cover her tuition, extra tutoring and classes, bedding, uniform, shoes, books, pencils, food, visitation, transport, specialized health care, and psychological and social services.
Our goal is to raise one year of tuition and costs for Annabel. Any additional funds raised over the $3,500 will go for Annabel’s tuition for subsequent years.
Thank you to everyone who has already donated to CCC, and specifically to Annabel’s cause. You are helping us to make Annabel’s dream of going to school a reality.
*name changed to protect identity