Mastercard to pump USD500m into African education
DEVELOPMENT| Sept. 27, 2012, 10:46 a.m.
The MasterCard Foundation has announced the launch of The MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program, a USD500 million education initiative that will provide talented yet economically disadvantaged students from developing countries – particularly from Africa – with comprehensive support for secondary and university education.
Over the past decade, Africa has been the second-fastest growing region in the world. Seventy percent of the continent's population is under the age of 30, and millions of them will need to enter the workforce. However, the region still lags the world in secondary and higher education completion rates. In order to sustain the continent's rapid growth, it will be essential that its young people have the skills needed to participate in a competitive global economy.
Reeta Roy, President and CEO of The MasterCard Foundation, announced the Scholars Program at a United Nations Special Session marking the launch of Education First. This initiative led by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Special Envoy for Education Gordon Brown seeks to ensure all children have access to quality, relevant, and inclusive education. The Scholars Program illustrates the values of the Education First initiative and was highlighted as an innovative model for educating young people and encouraging citizenship.
"An education does more than liberate people from poverty, it is the foundation of social and economic progress," said Reeta Roy. "The MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program is a network of extraordinary educational institutions, non-governmental organizations, and young people. Together, they will contribute to the emergence of a more equitable, dynamic, and prosperous Africa."
Special Envoy Gordon Brown, the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, added, "The MasterCard Foundation's significant commitment to provide today's youth with the values, attitudes, and skills to give back and contribute to their societies through education demonstrates the values at the heart of Education First."
The Scholars Program is designed to enable successful entry into secondary school, as well as transitions from secondary school to university, and, ultimately, into the workforce. At all points, young people will have access to financial, academic, social, and skills-building supports. The Scholars Program will create a peer network of alumni who share a 'give-back' ethos.
"The MasterCard Foundation scholarship is more than just school fees to me; it's the fuel, it's inspiration, it's courage and confidence," said Joseph Munyambanza, a former refugee from the Democratic Republic of Congo who, at the age of 14, set up COBUR WAS, a non-profit organization that provides nursery and primary school for orphans. Munyambanza, a graduate of African Leadership Academy, added: "I feel that I am in the right hands because I get support and inspiration, and I have confidence that I will achieve my two big dreams for Africa; better health for my people and better education that changes lives."
The network includes: American University of Beirut – Faculty of Health Sciences, Arizona State University, Ashesi University, Duke University, EARTH University, Michigan State University, Stanford University, University of California – Berkeley, andWellesley College. The Program also includes a partnership with African Leadership Academy to develop an African-based careers network for the Scholars to access internships and jobs across the continent.
MORE DEVELOPMENT NEWS
Airtel Kenya illuminates schools in Machakos CountyBharti Airtel has donated 40 solar lamps to Tala SA primary school and St. Mary’s Tala primary school in Machakos County, Kenya. Read More
First in MEA: Dubai to host Microsoft in Education Global ForumIn a clear message of Microsoft’s strong engagement and support to the Middle East and Africa region, Dubai is hosting the two day Microsoft in Education Global Forum on the 22nd and 23rdFebruary at the Grand Hyatt, Dubai. Read More
Tigo commissions water project for DawurampongOver 3,000 residents of Dawurampong and surrounding communities in the Gomoa West District of Ghana’s Central region will now have access to clean and safe water with the successful completion and commissioning of a new borehole and water tank by Tigo. Read More
Congo’s Marien Ngouabi University launches staff ICT trainingIntensive ICT training will take place this year for staff at Congo Brazzaville’s state-funded Marien Ngouabi University (UMNG). Read More
MTN Cameroon rewards academic excellence in telecomsExcellence scholarships have been awarded to 145 students of the National Advanced School of Posts and Telecommunications and the National Advanced School of Engineering. Read More
UNICEF, Airtel form pan-African partnership to empower children and youthUNICEF and Bharti Airtel have entered a partnership agreement to expand their collaboration across 17 countries in Africa. The partnership aims at improving Africa’s population access to health and education-related information whilst pushing forward various innovative projects supported by UNICEF. Read More
Airtel Kenya mentorship programme inspires the future for Mukuru studentsToday's children grow up having to cope with many social issues and challenges as they pursue their dreams of achieving their education dreams and as they go through difficult life transitions. Read More
1,089 patients to be released from hospital by the Leopards, AirtelBharti Airtel will be settling hospital bills for hundreds of patients in Congo, through a partnership with the Democratic Republic of Congo national team – ‘The Leopards’. Read More
Airtel, OKF make a difference for visually impaired studentAirtel Ghana, Ghana Telecom CSR Company of the Year has partnered Osei-Kusi Foundation (OKF) to Make a Change in the life of Grace Annabi a level 200 visually impaired student studying education at the University of Cape Coast. Read More
Kalulushi school gets US$50, 000 worth of computersSchool students in Zambia will be the first to benefit from Orica’s Global Community Partnerships Program, with the installation of a state-of-the-art computer lab at Twalubuka Secondary School. Read More
FEATURED STORYMalawi Govt denies clinging to ‘Cashgate’ software
The Malawi Government will not exclude the software brand that has been in use for the country’s Integrated Financial Management System (IFMIS), but it has rejected reports implying that it is ‘clinging’ to the old system.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHKenya’s digital TV battle hots up
Kenya’s journey to Digital TV broadcasting took a new turn this week, when the Communication Authority of Kenya (CAK) accused three local media firms of intent to disrupt the process.