Malawi is a country situated in northern Africa with a population of almost 18.9 million, as of 2017. Unfortunately, about five percent of youth aged 15 to 24 have no formal education and 57 percent of youth have not fully completed primary education. This means that there is a total of 62 percent of youth that have not finished primary education in Malawi.
For those that are in school, there is an immense lack of resources. The supply of notebooks, pencils and books greatly needs improvement. Perhaps most importantly, there are very few desks for children to sit comfortably at and write on.
To address this issue, UNICEF has partnered up with MSNBC’s “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell,” in order to launch a campaign known as the Kids In Need of Desks, or K.I.N.D., Fund. Desks will motivate children to concentrate on schoolwork and make going to school all the more engaging.
The K.I.N.D. Fund aims to provide desks to all of the students and potential students in Malawi. The organization asks for donations on their website ranging from $27.50 up to $1,300. The initial donation amount pays for the purchase of one desk for a child in school to use. The latter is able to buy supplies for an entire classroom. Regardless of the amount, any donation is generous and meaningful for the good of the children in Malawi.
The nation of Malawi understands the importance of having children enrolled in school. In 1994, Malawi introduced free primary schooling for all children. This drastically increased the amount of children that attended.
The only problem resulting from this is that secondary school and higher education costs money, which is why there is a decrease in enrolled students once they finish primary school. Thus, only the bare minimum levels of education are completed. On top of this, Malawi currently suffers from a lack of education infrastructure and resources to meet the demands of students.
This is where the K.I.N.D. Fund enters the picture. It works through fundraising, advocacy and education in the United States. Even if one chooses not to donate, just sharing the program online and through word of mouth to garner attention to issues such as this one would drastically change the lives of thousands of children. Improving the quality of education in Malawi will not only directly impact the individual students, but will change the future of the entire community as well.
Education allows for individuals to gain knowledge in multiple fields and allows for greater participation in a growing economy. Whether it is a desk or something else, these supplies help motivate kids to stay in school. Because of organizations like the K.I.N.D. Fund, schools are filled with an eagerness to learn that was not present before.
– Caysi Simpson