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Blog | Textbooks Africa

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A Note of Congratulations to One of our Own

Posted by on May 6th, 2016 in News | 0 comments

George AlberTextbooks Africa and its members don’t just work to improve societies across the world, but they also do so in their own communities. Today, it is our privilege to announce that George Alber, Vice President of Textbooks Africa, long-time resident of Fairfax County, Virginia, and outstanding member of his County’s NAACP, was appointed to the Fairfax County Human Rights Commission over the Christmas holiday season.

When George joined the NAACP in early 2014, he dove right in and quickly found his niche. Since joining the NAACP, George has served as Chair of the 2015 Nominating Committee, as the Branch’s representative to the Fairfax County Meals Tax Referendum Task Force, and as a member of the Branch Legal Redress Committee. In addition to being a member of the Recruitment, Diversity, and Vetting Subcommittee in support of the Fairfax County Ad Hoc Police Practices Review Commission, Alber has been leading the Branch’s advocacy campaign to change the name of J.E.B. Stuart High School since July 2015.

George’s work at the NAACP, Textbooks Africa, and now the FairFax County Human Rights Commission inspires those in his community and those he works alongside. When George was notified of his appointment to the Fairfax County Human Rights Commission, he said:

I am honored to have been appointed to the Human Rights Commission.  I am committed to helping to fulfill the Commission’s mission in Fairfax County:   “to institute an affirmative human rights program of positive efforts to eliminate discrimination and provide citizen recourse for discriminatory acts.”

We at Textbooks Africa are unable to properly express how lucky we feel to have George at our sides. He motivates us every day and we wish him the best of luck with his new appointment at the Human Rights Commission.

For the full press release announcing George’s new appointment, see here! 

Textbooks Africa’s Ghana Shipment

Posted by on May 5th, 2016 in News | 0 comments

Textbooks Africa rang in the New Year with a shipment of school supplies, including totes, math and reading books, coloring books, and coloring utensils to Pre-Kindergarten children living in Buduburam refugee camp, Ghana. Buduburam refugee camp, a camp just outside Ghana’s capital city of Accra, was setup in by the UNHCR in 1990 as a result of the First Liberian Civil War. The camp has provided refuge to many thousands of victims of this conflict and other conflicts, notably the Second Liberian Civil War and the Sierra Leone Civil War.

If you didn’t catch our Facebook post on this recent shipment, you can find pictures we took on distribution day. The shipment targeted a school for disabled children in Buduburam. There to receive the supplies was Joe Worthington, pictured below, who has been working with these children in Buduburam for four years. Joe partnered with Textbooks Africa in ensuring the school supplies arrived and were distributed safely.

Joe partnered with Textbooks Africa in ensuring the school supplies arrived and were distributed safely.

Joe partnered with Textbooks Africa in ensuring the school supplies arrived and were distributed safely.

Textbooks Africa on The Arnette Report

Posted by on Apr 28th, 2016 in News | 0 comments

 
Wede Gibson, Founder and President of Textbooks Africa, recently appeared on the The Arnette Report to discuss Textbooks Africa and the work it does. Wede and Jeff Arnette discussed Textbooks Africa’s origins, its mission and how it accomplishes it, and the demand for educational materials in many African countries. During the interview, Wede also emphasized the intimate relationship Textbooks Africa has with the schools receiving the educational materials, adding that three of Textbooks Africa’s board members are originally African. Wede went on to proudly note that Textbooks Africa has a “door to door” policy when shipping materials in that it ensures our shipments get to the targeted areas safely and in a timely manner.

Wede’s appearance with Jeff on The Arnette Report was a great opportunity for Textbooks Africa to tell others about the work we do. Moreover, it gave us the chance to examine with Jeff some of the obstacles Textbooks Africa runs into when trying to accomplish its mission, notably a lack of funds and storage space. In concern to both challenges, we at Textbooks Africa are constantly looking for partnerships and sponsorships of any degree.

The Road Ahead

Posted by on Apr 1st, 2015 in News | 0 comments

A few years ago the United Nations put forth a proposal for Sustainable Developmental Goals (SDGs)  which are described as a set of “action-oriented, concise and easy to communicate” to help promote sustainable development. Sustainable development goals contain over ten goals covering a broad range of global issues.  These goals are expected to form part of the United Nations agenda for the next 15 years. It includes ending poverty and hunger, improving health and education, making cities more sustainable, combating climate change, and protecting the environment.

The Sustainable Development Goals, created as an extension of the Millennium Development Goals will serve as the basis for which the international organizations, governments, NGOs, and other key players in development will focus their work on. Like the Millennium Development Goals, the Sustainable Developmental Goals will serve as the international vision for the world, and organizations like Textbooks Africa are tasked with helping the UN in accomplishing them.

A core tenet of these goals is education, specifically “achieving universal primary education.” We are thankfully in a day and age in which education is seen as a means of empowerment for individuals in their intellectual growth and career building. But more than this, it is being acknowledged that basic education through even just primary school levels creates a foundation for which people’s lifestyles are altered for the better. The World Bank note, for example, that a girl with a fifth grade education is more likely to marry at a later age, seek medical care, and vote in her community.  Furthermore, a basic education among a population does wonders for the development of communities.

Alex spent his last semester in Africa.  Thank you for your assistance in writing this blog post.

Alex spent his last semester in Africa. Thank you for your assistance in writing this blog post.

However, as beneficial education is in society, the goal of achieving universal primary education is a challenge, and few people are denying this. There are many components to achieving the goal. First, the proper access to education must be created. This means having governments or private institutions capable and willing to build schools, pay qualified teachers, administrators, and staff, creating a practical curriculum, and having basic school supplies. If the access is available for schools then what?

The second crucial stage of implementing educational goal is often forgotten. If proper access has been provided to a community, the next step is motivating students to come to school. Many students will enroll in school, but not necessarily come because, they cannot afford school uniforms or school supplies, or parents view helping the family earn a as more economical than a getting primary education. This last possibility has been seen to be true when parents feel there is a lack of skills-based learning and applicability in school curriculum. Solutions to getting students to come to school have ranged from providing lunch to subsidizing uniforms to providing medical care at schools.

Clearly, education is an intricate challenge across the world, from underdeveloped countries to those developed. It takes many actors with many talents and capabilities to positively change an issue as complex as education in developing regions. Textbooks Africa understands its role in this fight. Textbooks Africa’s tasks itself with providing proper access through supplying essential school materials that will foster students’ growth. Textbooks Africa provides anything from a small children’s book to a desktop computer to targeted schools across Africa. Textbooks Africa knows that without the materials so desperately needed, there is a cap on what can be achieved in the classroom. Textbook Africa’s talent  is in using our State-side location to collect materials people would otherwise throw away, use our contacts on-the-ground in targeted African countries, and distribute the school materials.

So looking forward, we are excited to continue our work here at Textbooks Africa and excitedly looking forward to the new education goals in the pending Sustainable Development Goals.  Textbooks Africa is dedicated to supporting the education of children in Africa.  But more than this, Textbooks Africa relies on our partner and supporters to help us in our mission to “Reuse, Educate and Inspire”.  You can support us by donating money to help pay for shipments to Africa, donate books and school supplies or volunteer to help with fundraising. Visit our website http://textbooksafrica.org/how-to-help/  or learn more about us on Facebook or Twitter.

Without your support, we would not be able to continue the work we do, and we are very thankful to have the opportunity to do so. Whether you are a long-time supporter or have just recently heard of us, I want to personally thank you for your support. We welcome your feedback and the opportunity to provide more information on request.

Wede Gibson, Founder and President of Textbooks Africa

Youth Contributions to Textbooks Africa

Posted by on Aug 20th, 2014 in News | 0 comments

Youth Contributions to Textbooks Africa

Recently, Daniel Caracciolo, a student at Paul VI Catholic High School (PVI), helped collect, inventory, pack, and unload approximately ninety boxes of school supplies such as books and athletic apparel for children in Africa from PVI and St. Timothy’s (STS)! Additionally, he collected twenty-four basketballs, twenty-four soccer balls, ten lacrosse balls, and various uniforms for sports such as soccer and volleyball from PVI. Daniel also received eleven footballs with an air pump from a private donor. The PVI PTO and softball Southwestern Youth Association (SYA) donated approximately one hundred and sixty football jerseys. That is a great accomplishment, Daniel! Bibles and other Catholic books were also collected which will go to Catholic Schools in Africa.

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We would also like to thank Mrs. Colwell, Mr. McLaughlin, Mrs. Carroll, and Mrs. Zanelotti for assisting Daniel to help gather donations for Textbooks Africa! This is a great example of youth leadership and uniting the members of the community with one goal: helping the children in Africa. The children are in dire need of these supplies, and they will be extremely grateful. The donations will help the children know that they are not alone. Through these supplies, the children will be equipped to be successful, both academically and athletically.

At Textbooks Africa, we encourage more youth leaders to take a stand, talk to their communities, and try help gather more supplies and money so we can reach even more children in Africa.

Shristi Varshney

Our First Blog Post!

Posted by on Apr 6th, 2014 in News | 0 comments

Our First Blog Post!

Today commemorates the first day of Textbooks Africa’s new blog! Now, it will be much easier to keep up with current projects, hear personal stories from workers and beneficiaries, learn of great opportunities in which you can participate, and stay in-tune with international education news. And for our first blog, we have a special post about our most current project!

Textbooks Africa is proud to continue its mission for education and environmental sustainability with our project in Zimbabwe. This next shipment was made possible by Textbooks Africa’s network in the United States and in Zimbabwe. Tariro and Max Msutu, members of Textbook Africa’s family, were the initiators of this most recent project. Tariro and Max are originally from Zimbabwe and were able to connect Textbooks Africa with the group of schools the next shipment is heading to. A short time ago, the Msutu’s had the opportunity to travel to the country and see the schools, staff, and children Textbook Africa will be assisting. With this trip, we are offered a glimpse of the faces and structures Textbooks Africa is hoping to benefit. The schools are located approximately 250 miles south of the capital in the rural town of Zvishavane and are comprised of four primary schools and two secondary schools. Most of the schools are dilapidated in building structure, subpar with basic commodities such as desks and books, and marginalized in the broad education system of Zimbabwe as a result of their rural location. However, what these schools are not lacking is a student and facilitator body that is passionate about learning and growing as a community. However, this yearn can only be successful if the resources are there to support them. As one of the school’s heads said, “these children’s’ imagination is limited by what they can read. Having other available books will help broaden their minds and imagination.” This school head had traveled several miles just to meet Tariro and Max. He shared his devotion to the children’s education and noted how important the shipment would be for the community.

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Moreover, the work that Textbooks Africa does and other NGOs like ours does in Zimbabwe can have an outstanding impact in the country. Though education is labeled a basic human right in Zimbabwe, there is a monetary side of education that can be difficult to overcome for institutions and individuals. Despite a rise in education in the 1980s, Zimbabwe’s education industry and its funding has faltered over the past two decades.

This is where Textbooks Africa and organizations like ours work to supplement the Government’s efforts. Organizations like Textbooks Africa are working towards Goal 2 of the United Nation’s Millennium Development Goals. Among several other crucial components, Goal 2 states that it is necessary to improve the quality and relevance of primary education in order to achieve “universal primary education.” Through the supply of school supplies like textbooks and computers, Textbooks Africa is helping improve this quality by supplementing the education effort in Zimbabwe. Textbooks Africa is an essential part to the whole, and is greatly looking forward to the completion and furtherance of our project.

We are so joyful that we can play a role in these schools’ success. Helping provide the access to a suitable working environment is in the core mission of Textbooks Africa, and we hope you can join us in this effort. It takes many resources to ship school supplies across the Atlantic, including manpower, money, and supplies, but above all it requires a unified effort by those able to give support. By donating a little bit towards this cause, you could make a big impact on one child’s education. We know the access to education does incredible things across the world; it serves as the basis for all types of development. As one child learns, he teaches his friends, his family, and all those he comes to know. His education does not benefit only him, but it benefits society as a whole. This is the mission of Textbooks Africa, and we are happy to have you on board with us.

If you would like to further support Textbooks Africa, we would love for you to add us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, connect with us on LinkedIn, and sign up for our newsletter. Additionally, if you would like to help support the Zimbabwe project and our future endeavors, you can find a link to our donations page below. Once again, thank you for your dedication to Textbooks Africa and the goals we continually pursue.

Wede Gibson

Founder & President HR Director, Cuisine Solutions Inc.

Founder and President

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Upcoming event

Posted by on Jul 31st, 2012 in News | 0 comments

Textbooks for Africa has a major event planned to help raise money for textbook shipments.

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