The Madame Dorbor Scholarship – Student Update

In 2018, The EHG Fund and Full Circle Learning set up the Madame Dorbor Scholarship to help support multiple students in Liberia to fund their education. The students that were awarded the scholarship have continued to show growth and have helped develop their communities by using the lessons they learned from Full Circle Learning. We are so excited to share their progress and update you on the projects they have been working on this year.

Wubu and Rose

“Scholarship students Wubu and Rose received their books at Kingdom Foundation International this week, after starting a sustainable development club. The girls led other youth in identifying the causal effects of environmental pollution and public health problems. They recommended community-based approaches to prevention and environmental reform.”

Saldayah and Joana

“Saldayah and Joana gathered friends from O’Nance International Christian School and Faith Academy International. They taught the children how to make paper boats, to send love and appreciation out into the world. The children placed the 20 boats on the water and set them in motion. Their positive messages will go to wisdom exchange partners in other Full-Circle Learning countries.”

Laura

“Laura has acquired new land for a larger school farm. As one of the first scholarship students, she has taught her school how to feed the community and has especially helped keep the elderly alive during the pandemic. At a time when some were dying of hunger in their homes, Laura designed a plan to bring widows to the garden to grow their own food. For people too elderly to work, she hired drivers to bring them food from the garden. To pay the drivers, she and her classmates used funds earned from selling a portion of the food they had raised.”

Bendu

“Student Bendu of Korto school is one of FCL students whose life has changed since she got admitted into the school. She treks almost every day to school, a one hour walk. Bendu has been involved in nearly all of the school community service projects and she volunteered to help Laura, Masu, and Benetta with their projects. 

Before Covid, she has already learned and mastered the habit-of-heart “altruism” and frankly it is helping her to see the needs of others and assist. She has totally become selfless. 

Bendu lives in a community where nearly everyone of her neighbours including her parents are surviving just by the grace of God. She learned an art (trap making) that she has introduced in her community. She taught other young kids of her age and below her age the skills of making traps to hunt for crab meat. Most families in her community and other slums in Liberia who can’t afford frozen meat and fish depend on crab meat for survival and it is really helping. She produced over 20 crab traps as she taught the kids. Her first day catch was distributed among her neighbours. 

Bendu has also taught the kids how to be entrepreneurs. She knows that more people like the crab meat. The kids will not only hunt crabs for food but also to sell and raise some money for their families.”

About the Madame Dorbor Scholarship

Madame Dorbor scholarships are offered through the EHG Fund, an in-house charitable arm of DentalXChange, an American company that provides online services to the dental industry. DentalXChange’s company founders have helped support a number of projects of Full-Circle Learning, spanning over a decade. Generations of children in multiple countries have benefited from the charitable giving of DentalXChange’s employees and clients, who value equal access to purposeful, transformational education.

Lindsey Schurman In Liberia – Day 4

Lindsey Int PhotoIn May 2016, Lindsey Schurman, Manager of Client Services atDentalXChange and a representative of the EHG Fund, went to Monrovia, Liberia to attend Full Learning Center’s Conference to see firsthand, the changes and challenges the Full Circle Learning has had to deal with to help that community. She was king enough to write a daily log so we can read about her adventures. 

Day 4 

20160527_104823We were lucky to start day 4 without rain. This allowed us to visit two schools outside of Monrovia, Korto and New Hope. The schools were about an hour’s drive away. This was not because it was a long distance away but required a large distance of driving over unpaved roads to get to the school. These roads were difficult to drive along and required much care. This is the case for most roads that lead to villages in Liberia. Davidson explained that the road to Korto had been slated for paving multiple times but when it came time to pave the road they were told by the government there was no money.

The school in Korto had planned to do a service project in town this Friday but was unable to due to the weather of the week. This is an area that has faced a great amount of gender based violence and one of the classes had planned a project to go out in to the community to ask about what ways they could do something in the community to prevent it. Instead we were able to visit the classrooms of each grade to meet the students. The school was no bigger than the 2 floors of our office building but there are currently just over 500 students enrolled. Additionally, the principal shared that over 100 students had left over the course of the year due to the inability to afford tuition.

Each class welcomed us and we had the opportunity to see some of the lessons. We entered the preschool class as they practiced their ABC’s, the first grade class as they practiced reading and the twelfth grade class as they spoke about the age of imperialism. We got to speak with teachers from all grade levels during a quick recess and watch the children play.

kids-school-yardWe then went to New Hope, a school that has remained tuition free to allow students the ability to attend school when they would otherwise be unable to. The director of this school was sick with typhoid at the time and was not able to make it to the school to meet us. Unfortunately when we arrived, school was done for the day but several children remained for the afternoon. Two girls were preparing for a performance on Saturday and we got to see them dance in traditional African outfits. I received a tour of the school from one of the teachers. Each of the classrooms I saw was small with only a few desks; in some cases, 2 or 3 grade levels were taught in the same room. After the tour I was told about what the school had done to assist with learning during the Ebola crisis. At the time, schools, business, government programs, etc. were closed and people were very afraid to go outside and interact due to the easy spread of the disease. It was described as a ghost town. In order to continue educating students that wished to continue learning, this particular school held classes underneath the mango trees just outside the grounds. The classes were so popular students had to be turned away when class size got to big to maintain.

After visiting schools, we drove to central Monrovia where we went to a library run by a program called We Care Liberia. This program and library were started to encourage pleasure reading, which would assist with the literacy problem in Liberia. The program also publishes books by Liberian authors to promote writing from the community. Several students were using the space to study and a volunteer with the library was giving a talk on Early Childhood Development and the necessity of literature in this process.

20160527_172453It was a very enlightening day that ended with pizza in central Monrovia followed by reviewing the newspaper articles that published a review of our conference from the day before with glowing remarks!