Help David Finish High School

EFAC High School Students at the 2014 Mentor Workshop

EFAC High School Students at the 2014 Mentor Workshop

All of us at EFAC wanted to say thank you to our supporters for a a wonderful 2014!

We are very pleased to tell you that our recent campaign to secure Emma's junior and senior years of high school was a success, and Emma will graduate with her class in 2017.

Thank you.

We are also pleased to tell you that 150 of the 151 EFAC students in high school are fully funded through secondary school.

That's great news. Thank you.

David William

David William

We have only one more student who needs funding so we can guarantee that he, too, will be able to graduate with his class.

During the campaign for Emma, a supporter pledged $500 toward David's tuition -- which means we just need to raise $500 more to guarantee that he can return to St. Mary's Boys School in January.

When David was young, his mother abandoned the family and left David and his siblings in the care of his elderly grandmother. While David’s father works as a peasant farmer to help support his children, he cannot afford high school fees for David or his siblings  -- but he is very supportive of David's accomplishments in school.

In 8th grade, David graduated second in a class of 107 students, securing a spot at top rated St. Mary’s Boys School where he is very happy and doing well academically. Outside of the classroom, he loves singing and writing songs.

In a recent letter, David wrote: "I owe you a huge magnitude of gratitude. Actually my words can’t explain it. What a kind heart you have! I understand that it is no joke sponsoring me and trying to help me reach my dreams."

To help David reach his dreams, please consider an end of the year tax-deductible gift.

DONATE NOW -- the minimum donation is only $10 and 100% goes toward helping David complete his high school education.

Happy New Year!

Education Can Be Fun Puzzle Solution by Walker Royce

Just a few short blog posts ago, we had a wonderful puzzle and promised the answer. You can refresh your memory reading the post here.

Here was the original puzzle:

The poem below has four special attributes with a unifying theme. Can you see the theme?

English shining linens in eggshell sheen.
“Negligees, leggings, high heels,” he sings.
Giggling, she senses illness in his singleness.
Lessening his lies is senile.
Is she seeing his sinning signs?
She sighs. He is selling silliness.
His highness is senseless in English!

Here is the answer! The poem has 4 interesting characteristics around the theme: Enjoy English
1) It starts with the word English, 
2) It ends with the word English, 
3) The first word of each line spells out English
4) Every word in the poem uses only the 7 letters: E-N-G-L-I-S-H

We hope you enjoyed this illustration of how education can be fun! Wishing you all a Happy New Year!

Help Emma Finish High School

Emma with the EFAC secondary students

Emma with the EFAC secondary students

Good news. Thanks to donors like you, every female EFAC scholar is funded through high school -- except for one student -- Emma. Our goal, this holiday season, it to guarantee that Emma will graduate with her class. 

Emma is a bright, motivated teenager from Kenya where high school is not free. Her mother was able to raise the fees for Emma's first year of high school but cannot afford to send her back. 

We need to raise $1000 by December 31 so she can continue her education at Naivasha Girls School.

“We are 3 in our family. My brother is the first born. He dropped out of school when he was in class eight [eighth grade]. Now he does not have any job. I am the second born and the first one to join secondary school in our family. My mother is a single mother. She reached class seven. She has a small garden in which she grow kales and sells them to get money for our food and paying the rent of the house and the garden. All these challenges do not make me lose hope in life. I believe I can do all things…”

Knowing Emma, we have no doubt she will do whatever she sets her mind to.  

After high school, Emma dreams of becoming a banker and "helping other needy children find and get an education." 

Let's make her dreams come true.

How can you help? 

  1. READ MORE about why it is still so critical to invest in educating girls.
  2. DONATE NOW - the minimum donation is only $10 and 100% goes toward helping Emma complete her educational journey.

Consider making a difference in her life today. Thanks!

Repairing Friendship in the Context of Conflict

Blog post by Peter King'ori, a member of EFAC's Kenyan Team. 

People have unique ways of resolving conflicts. Educators always teach the students that fighting and violence do not resolve conflicts. They advocate for healthy ways of anger management and above all embracing reconciliation and forgiveness.

Problem solving skills tend to be one of the key competencies that employers are looking while hiring. Education for All Children has been giving eminence to topics that empower students with the 21st century skills during annual workshops.  Students are taught to resolve conflicts amicably with their peers, schoolmates, workmates, siblings, parents, teachers and the community at large.

Recently, Diana, an EFAC student at Naivasha Girls High School narrated how she reconciled with her friend. Diana’s friend had requested her accompany to a hockey game. Instead, she refused and opted to remain behind and revise for her exams. Afterwards, her friend started saying false things to her schoolmates. She became angry with her and instead of fighting back she opted to write the below poem while controlling her anger. She later recited it to her friend as she sought for reconciliation who initially busted in laughter but later she asked for forgiveness. After all, we are all human.

Human, Too

By Diana, EFAC student, Naivasha Girls High School

As I watch you drawn in the comfort
Of hands alien to me
And a lot too familiar with you
Still, I’ll smile when you smile at me
And give a nod when you wave at me
All the same, the pain and fury gorge deep
Like the winds, reaping off my trust for you.

Tell me I was never the best
And I will dare to accept
Scream at me you wanted more of my time
Look, sure I won’t throw a dime
If staying away was my only crime
Then tame my minutes to their prime
I’ll be there, so let go of the lime.

As the winds ferry the laughter
And the piece of you that goes with it
Freely you give, freely you receive
Just as it always was with me
Is it a miracle what I feel?

Looking on, I don’t know anymore
Where to focus my eyes when you are around
You told me, so I believed
Then you won’t sum me up when I perceive
The filth in those arms that encircle you
And feel the warmth that I imagine you do.

I’m perverse, I won’t refute
But too bad I couldn’t stay mute
Hear the sad melody of my lute
For with it comes my muse
This doesn’t feel the same, but more of a loot
I don’t know if I will listen, when you fall back
Too much I took in, too much I supposed.

Alright, I will tell it to the world
That I’m jealous when you are held by your
A game of pretense yet at the end it will rip you
Saying you love, yet it’s contrasted down to your toe
Tell me what else to do, except for a wounded sigh and broken ‘oh’
I’m human too, did you know.

Education Can Be Fun by Walker Royce

There are so many ways to make learning fun. Plenty of good stuff is available to teach people who are motivated to learn, but how can we increase their motivation? People who really enjoy a topic are much more motivated to educate themselves.

Take language for example. English is a complex human creation, and it is as quirky as those of us who speak it. We expect certain structural attributes: symmetry, regularity, consistency, and logical construction of words and phrases. In general, our language delivers well on these features, but occasionally, or even quite frequently, quirks surface. A whirlwind tour through some counterintuitive usages illustrates this point.

A slim chance and a fat chance mean the same thing. A wise man and a wise guy are very different. Unto means the same as to in most usages. Quite a few means quite manyPineapples have nothing to do with pines or apples. A house can burn up or burn down with the same outcome. Filling in forms and filling out forms produce the same results. We have noses that run and feet that smell. We fire employees who hardly work and praise them if they work hardFolk and folks are both plural and mean the same thing.  Nonword is a word. Furious means full of fury and joyous means full of joy, but gorgeous does not mean full of gorge. A man with hair sounds much hairier than one with hairs. Why can’t people be chalant, plussed, combobulated, or gruntled?  Why can we remember things when we never membered them to begin with? And finally, observe that stifle is an anagram of itself.

These peculiarities might confuse some people, but to me they represent the spectrum of opportunities for surprise and wonder that make English so powerful, puzzling, humorous, and entertaining. It is a remarkably beautiful language.

We can also enjoy English with a puzzle that employs some simple poetic license. The poem below has four special attributes with a unifying theme. Can you see the theme?

English shining linens in eggshell sheen.
“Negligees, leggings, high heels,” he sings.
Giggling, she senses illness in his singleness.
Lessening his lies is senile.
Is she seeing his sinning signs?
She sighs. He is selling silliness.
His highness is senseless in English!

It is a remarkably beautiful language.

(Answer in our next blog post.)

In this short blog, my sole purpose was to point out some opportunities in making a dull topic like language more entertaining to learn. Enjoying a topic motivates us to stay interested even when the lessons are not that much fun. What they don't teach enough of in school is how to enjoy a topic. We mentors, parents and coaches can help reinforce the fun in learning. 

Walker Royce is the Chief Software Economist at IBM and the author of three books. Walker and his family are also EFAC sponsors.