Look what you helped achieve in our first quarter:
In honor of the International Day of the Girl, Newman’s Own Foundation has pledged $800,000 over five years, to further SHOFCO’s work empowering and educating girls in Kenyan slums.
Newman’s Own is one of the organizations the White House recognized yesterday for making a new commitment to Let Girls Learn - an initiative launched by First Lady, Michelle Obama, to fight for girls' education globally. We are so proud to be a Newman's Own partner; they were one of SHOFCO’s first major funders and they have provided unwavering support in the past six years.
Our Kibera School for Girls students are entering their final year as eight graders in January. But, with this new commitment from Newman’s Own, SHOFCO will be able to provide the exceptional support our girls need well into high school.
To learn more about our Kibera School for Girls, click here. For more information on the $800,000 commitment, read below for a full press release:
Newman's Own Foundation today announced a $1 million commitment to support the education of girls, aimed at helping them to reach their full potential without discrimination or barriers. $200,000 has been granted to the Peace Corps Let Girls Learn Fund. An additional grant of $800,000 over five years is being made to Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO), which runs the Kibera and Mathare Schools for Girls in Kenya, so girls may continue their education through high school.
The International Day of the Girl was established to recognize the need to educate young girls and empower them to overcome the complex physical, cultural, and financial barriers in accessing education. When girls are educated, they lead healthier and more productive lives with skills and knowledge that help them break the cycle of poverty and strengthen their communities.
Newman's Own Foundation began funding SHOFCO in Kibera, one of Africa's largest slums, in 2010 as the earliest major philanthropic investor, and has continued support which has helped educate girls, first grade through eighth grade. The Foundation's commitment of $800,000 will help the girls continue their education beyond eighth grade, supporting scholarships and enrichment programs, principally at high schools and colleges in the U.S. and abroad.
The Peace Corps Let Girls Learn Fund will use the Foundation's grant to help educate adolescent girls with community-led solutions in various parts of the world. Let Girls Learn is a U.S. government initiative launched by the President and First Lady that helps girls attain a quality education that they deserve.
"Newman's Own Foundation is proud to support efforts to help girls learn, encouraging them to dream and reach their full potential," said Bob Forrester, President and CEO of Newman's Own Foundation. "We join First Lady Michelle Obama in the effort to raise awareness around the need to educate girls."
Forrester added, "In the years that we've supported SHOFCO, we've seen a transformation of the girls who came from horrid conditions in the slum and became educated, talented, and hopeful for the future. The Peace Corps empowers local leaders around the world to put lasting solutions in place. We see that education and opportunity open doors for a better life, and we're confident that our grants will help empower young girls to achieve more.
For Immediate Release
Contact: Susan Varghese, firstname.lastname@example.org
The Schooner Foundation Extends a $1 Million Matching Challenge to Support CGI Commitment
Nairobi, Kenya- To commemorate the end of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), the Schooner Foundation announces a $1 million multi-year pledge to support and expand the work being done by CGI partner and nonprofit organization, Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO).
Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) gathers leaders around the world to address the world’s most urgent problems. Every year, people make new Commitments to Action — precise and measurable plans for addressing global challenges. Though CGI is coming to a close, SHOFCO’s commitment to transforming urban poverty in Kenya’s slums is not.
In support of SHOFCO’s commitment, the Schooner Foundation is offering a matching challenge to garner support and drive the organization's mission forward. The Schooner Foundation is deeply invested in entrepreneurial solutions to social problems - which is what SHOFCO was founded on.
Schooner Foundation Senior Advisor and Trustee, Cynthia Ryan, said, “Rarely does a foundation find a partner with the local knowledge and support that Kennedy and Jessica Odede have from the Kibera community. Add to this their holistic approach to development, their commitment to excellence and their courage to try creative and cutting edge approaches to their work and the decision to support them with financial and human capital is a no brainer. We are honored to be part of the SHOFCO family and hope other donors will join us as partners for Shining Hope for Communities”.
The Schooner Foundation is offering the match around this momentous time of collective leadership to encourage others to come forward and match their gift. They will match a total donation of up to $1 million.
Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO) combats gender inequality and extreme poverty in urban slums by linking tuition free schools for girls to essential services for all. The services include health clinics, access to clean water and empowerment programs. The SHOFCO model elevates girls while connecting community transformation to women's empowerment.
About The Schooner Foundation
The Schooner Foundation is a foundation focused internationally on human rights, peace & security and economic opportunity issues. Domestically, the Foundation supports progressive media, campaign finance reform, the green economy, investigative reporting and judicial reform. They seek to honor human dignity and to act where they see the greatest need and opportunities to leverage their funds domestically and globally.
As a kid living in the slums of Kibera, I remember our family spending two days without food. My mother was able to get some porridge, but just enough for me and my siblings. Though she was probably starving, I witnessed love in her eyes as my sister and I had it - down to the last sip. I'll never forget that, especially because her journey in life was far from easy.
My mother was just 15 when she had me - a breech baby - in a remote village in Kenya. Born into poverty and with no access to proper healthcare, the odds were stacked high against us. There's only one difference between my story and the stories of countless mothers without access to maternal care: luck.
We were lucky we survived.
I refuse to have "luck" be the determining factor for women and babies living in the slums. We started the Maternal Care and Health Program at SHOFCO to ensure that the women in our communities get the care they need, and together, we can continue to make that happen. It's not too late to join our special Mother's Day Campaign to help women just like my mom.
And, to all of the extraordinary mothers that keep the world turning, gappy Mother's Day!
- Kennedy Odede