Newsletter June 2009

From educating girls in the Atlantic forest reserves of Paraguay to the launch of our annual conference in the Amazon region of Ecuador - welcome to another tree-mendous edition of the Teach A Man To Fish quarterly newsletter!

  • Entrepreneurial Reserve: An Empowering Environment for Girls in Paraguay
  • Learning From One Another: Uganda Members Share Their Solutions
  • Teach A Man To Blog: An Inside View Of Our African Projects
  • Save The Date: Education That Pays For Itself 2009 Launches
  • And Finally...

Entrepreneurial Reserve: An Empowering Environment for Girls in Paraguay

vistaA new Teach A Man To Fish school in Paraguay is empowering girls to develop their communities and protect an endangered forest for future generations.

There are some conservationists in the world who would prefer to put a giant fence around vast areas of land and shut out the local people who cause them so many nights of lost sleep.

Fortunately the Fundación Moises Bertoni take a more holistic approach. They know protecting nature means creating a situation where local communities can pursue alternative income opportunities with a low impact on the environment.

In collaboration with the Fundación Paraguaya they have established an all girls high school within the Mbaracayu Atlantic Forest - an internationally recognized Biosphere Reserve encompassing one of the last remaining tracts of this once vast ecosystem.

By giving local girls a business and skills education where making money goes hand-hand with respect for the environment, they will leave school not only economically empowered, but also ready to defend the unique habitat they live alongside.

Like with all Teach A Man To Fish programs, the school's enterprises - from forest-shaded nurseries, to eco-tourism facilities - provide an opportunity for hands-on business experience, while the income they generate helps pay the school's costs.

Green truly is the new gold!

The Fundación Paraguaya will be sharing their experiences from this and their other programs at Education That Pays For Itself 2009. Find out more, here.

Learning From One Another: Uganda Members Share Their Solutions

Earlier this year the Teach A Man To Fish Uganda network held its first ever workshop in Kampala kindly hosted one of our local partners, PEAS Uganda. Education professionals, NGO workers and rural development experts travelled from all over the country to share their views and lessons learnt on how to take Self-Sufficient Education forward in Uganda.

Uniquely, this workshop focused on the challenges to implementing the Teach A Man To Fish model with attendees offering their own innovative solutions based on practical experience.

To give one concrete example, many programs suffer from limits to the amount of time field staff can spend providing capacity building. VODA Uganda have had success in overcoming this challenge by using a peer-mentoring system. This provides quick answers to common questions, but moreover strengthens students sense of collective responsibility for solving their individual problems by working together.

Feedback from the workshop was excellent and firm plans are in place for developing the Teach A Man To Fish Members' Network further in Uganda, to ensure that as many young people as possible benefit from Self-Sufficient Education.

This is a great example of how the Teach A Man To Fish model has been adopted and adapted, taking on its own momentum and driven by local change-makers!

If you are interested in hosting your own Teach A Man To Fish country workshop, please get in touch.

Teach A Man To Blog: An Inside View Of Our African Projects

It's amazing how fast three months seems to pass, and suddenly there it is, another Teach A Man To Fish quarterly newsletter in your inbox.

With so much going on all the time however, these bulletins can only give you a quick snapshot of some of the exciting projects we're involved with.

For those of you who're interested in a more in depth and personal view of what we're up to on the ground, keep an eye out for our African project blogs.

Africa's First Self-Sufficient School For Girls in Kenya. James Riggs' account of the highs and lows of working with a local community to create a self-financing girls' high school in Ondati village, deep in rural Kenya. There's no electricity, but plenty of bananas - and even the odd crocodile! Read more...

Uganda's First Self-Sufficient School Project. Gemma Moffat's diary from St Denis, a Ugandan secondary school with around 250 students, which is at the start of a journey of conversion to Education That Pays For Itself. The matoke (plantain) orchard is in full swing outside, but there's plenty to be done working with the teachers to bring business thinking and practical examples into the classroom. Read more...

Save The Date: Education That Pays For Itself 2009 Launches

Dates announced for the 3rd International Conference on Sustainable Education, which will take place from 8-10 December 2009 at the Yachana Lodge, Ecuador.

Everybody talks about the importance of education for fighting poverty, but very few have concrete ideas on how to pay for it, and how to make it meet the needs of the poorest.

If you've ever got tired of constantly battling to raise enough funds to keep your education program running another year, then this is one conference you shouldn't miss!

Education That Pays For Itself 2009 will be bring together around 100 participants including some of the world's leading experts on Financially Sustainable Education.

This year's theme of "Income Generation for Education" recognizes the double role of school businesses, not only source of program funding, but even more importantly in providing a real-life learning environment for skills and entrepreneurship education.

The conference is hosted by Yachana Foundation which has led the way in using eco-tourism at their lodge in Ecuador's Amazon rainforest to support a unique high school for young people of the local indigenous community.

For more information on the conference, click here.

Note. Registration will open in early July, and with limited capacity places may run out fast. Make sure you don't miss your place, subscribe to Conference Updates now, and receive a mail immediately when registration opens.

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