Liberia continues to recover from the effects of a brutal 14-year civil war and the devastation of the Ebola outbreak, where already fragile institutions face additional challenges related to school enrollment, ensuring quality education, and building educational capacity across the country. The mean number of years of schooling in Liberia is 3.9, and the unemployment rate is a staggering 85%, and only about 1 in 10 of the children in Clara Town can afford to go to school.
In 2009, while still in high school, Jessica Arnold began raising money for tuition for students at C.W. Duncan School and was later able to visit the school in 2013, where students knew about the ongoing scholarship efforts by Waterford Central United Methodist Church. She was able to meet the students she was supporting (see picture).
Since then, Jessica has worked in President Obama’s administration and is currently earning a master’s degree from Columbia University in International Security Policy. Her home church, Waterford Central UMC in Waterford Michigan, is committed to continuing the work Jessica began. We currently provide scholarships for 24 students, one girl and one boy at each grade level annually. The scholarships cover the cost of tuition, books, fees, supplies, and uniforms for each student.