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New grant unlocks education and economic opportunities in rural Africa

10 September 2008 - Camfed is delighted to announce a major new grant of $2.5 million by the Skoll Foundation. This grant is part of the Foundation’s commitment to developing ‘a global ecosystem of social entrepreneurs’.

In announcing the grant, Sally Osberg, CEO of the Skoll Foundation, described the impetus driving their new investments: “We have had the chance to work closely with our initial group of Skoll social entrepreneurs over the last three years, helping us better understand both what is most effective in driving systemic change and what these innovators need to be successful. The additional investments we’re making now show our continued support for the power of the social entrepreneurial model.”

Camfed’s model places partnership at the center. We work closely with a wide range of institutions, including Ministries of Education in Africa and together, we are dismantling the barriers to education faced by girls. “Every member of the Camfed organization is thrilled and exhilarated at the news of this grant,” said Ann Cotton, Camfed’s founder and Executive Director. “And it is so special that it follows the visit by Sally Osberg and Lakshmi Karan of the Skoll Foundation to see our work in Tanzania. Camfed Tanzania Executive Director Penina Mlama and her team were able to show them firsthand the transformation in children’s lives in some desperately poor yet hugely aspirational rural schools. These schools and communities will now have the resources to make education a reality for so many more children.”

The grant will also enable Camfed to develop and articulate its model for girls’ education as a best-practice template that can be widely replicated. Camfed’s blueprint for change calls on donor communities to better account for the resources that are raised in the name of the child, and to protect the well-being of every child at school.

“The Skoll Foundation’s long-term support of Camfed’s entrepreneurial spirit will allow us to continue to respond with creativity and resourcefulness to the specific needs of individual girls in rural Africa,” said Ann Cotton. “By working closely with communities who understand the hardships facing children, Camfed can continue to develop innovative solutions that open doors for the millions of girls who are yearning to go to school.”


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