BENEFITING: VALENTINO ACHAK DENG FOUNDATION
South Sudan is in an educational crisis.
- 85% of South Sudan’s population is illiterate.
- 94% of appropriately aged students are not enrolled in secondary school.
- There is a high dropout rate, where only 18% of students who enroll in first grade remain in school by the end of the primary cycle, through eighth grade.
Qualified teachers are essential to reversing these stark trends. Without them, this crisis will only worsen. However, the region faces a critical lack of teachers. While the number of children enrolled in school in South Sudan is increasing, there are not enough teachers to meet the widening need. In fact, the proportion of teachers to students is already too low: as of 2009, each class had, on average, about 129 students. Moreover, in South Sudan today, 61% of teachers do not possess any professional training. And because the state of education in South Sudan is currently so poor, it is hard to attract and keep teachers that are qualified. Almost 50% of the country’s educational staff are volunteers, and benefits such as pensions, teacher service commission housing, and health insurance are virtually nonexistent.
By donating to fund one teacher’s salary at Marial Bai Secondary School, you will be helping to pay a certified teacher, who will be best equipped to give students the skills they need to overcome such obstacles as illiteracy and poverty. In this way, your gift does much more than simply enable one teacher to pursue his or her passion—your gift will help support the next generation of future leaders in the world’s newest country.