The School Proposal:
What if you had to leave everything you know and love to get a great education? If you’re reading this, chances are you’re lucky enough to have some education. You’re even more fortunate if you got to choose where you went to school and what degrees you earned — in other words, if you were able to choose your own path. In Senegal, the path to a great education is filled with obstacles at every step of the way, even moreso for girls.
There are so many girls and young women who aren’t afforded the opportunity to attend school or who have less schooling than they need to succeed in a modern society. Enter: Expedition Subsahara. Our plan is to create a technical school for young women who haven’t had the ability to attend school.
The school will be business based with two hubs, one for graphic/creative arts and another for the technical side. After the students finish school, we plan to help them find jobs through partnerships with businesses close to Senegal.
In Senegal, there’s this overarching belief that if you want to be successful — if you want to get a great education or job, you have to leave Senegal. So many, many young Senegalese leave their homes, cultures, family and friends for a better opportunity. The fact that there aren’t opportunities at home is disheartening, but we plan to change that. We need to raise a total of $125,000 in 2018. This is the first step in a four-year timeline to build the school and get girls and women the resources they need to be successful.
Through sells, we aim to build a school in Fass Cabolone, Senegal, to give young women access to education beyond secondary school. Our mission is to increase opportunities for women to succeed in the 21st century without being forced to leave their home countries through technology and graphic arts, incorporating science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) into a formal education.
Unequal access to education: According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) - although there are more girls with a primary education, (for every 100 boys enrolled, there are approximately 104 girls), as the level of education increases girls’ enrollment rates decrease. Only 39% of women aged 15 years and older are literate, compared to 62% of men. Many families still only send boys to school, keeping girls at home to help with housework or look after siblings. Other factors, such as early marriage, the long distance to school, unsafe roads and poor infrastructure of school buildings, as well as the low quality of education get in the way of girls’ enrollment or completion of education.
Senegal’s Human Development Indicator of 0.494 is below the average of 0.497 for countries in the low human development group and below the average of 0.523 for countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. Over half of the Senegalese population lives below the poverty line. Many young women face difficulties furthering their education because it’s not available locally, they cannot afford supplies and schools lack funding to pay for necessities such as textbooks, electricity and running water.
According to the United Nations Human Development (UNDP) indicators, there is a positive correlation between education for women and the development of a community. To help tackle Senegal’s problem we are building a school that focuses on technology and visual/graphic arts. After the students finish school, we plan to help them find jobs through partnerships with businesses close to Senegal. We believe women should have the education and tools needed to choose her own destiny. And though there will still be hurdles to achieving success, education won’t be one of them. The school will serve 120 young women.
STEPS TO PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION
Buy land in Fass Cabolone by the end of 2018. The following year, will be dedicated to raising the funds to build the school from the ground up. Once the funds are fully raised, Sofi will move to Senegal to start construction while a dedicated team runs Expedition Subshara in the U.S. The plan is to open the school in 2022.
BUDGET FOR SCHOOL CONSTRUCTION
Item Cost in USD
- Cost of Land Approximately $65,000
- 6 Classrooms $7,200 per classroom = $43,200
- 2 Restrooms $10,000 each = $20,000
- 2 Computer labs $50,000 each = $100,000
- 2 Teacher/Staff Room $7,200 each = $14,400
- 1 Library $20,000
- 1 Cafeteria/Kitchen $100,000
Total to raise: $362,600
Costs based on World Bank and UNICEF estimates for building a school in Sub Saharan Africa.
HOW EXPEDITION SUBSAHARA WILL FUND THE SCHOOL
Sales! We are going to build and start the school using a percentage of each sale and by fundraising throughout the year. It costs $1,000 per year to educate a student in Senegal.