OPEN International is committed to providing the children of Nioro access to a quality education. Our approach is to combine academic and agricultural programs for children in rural Senegal in order to increase successful academic outcomes, and an opportunity for the students to acquire marketable skills and the opportunity to attend university. We believe that this approach can create empowered youth that will set the stage for self-sustaining communities that are able to address the issues their citizens face.
Empowering children and strengthening communities through education.
History of Open International
Arlington resident Khady Lusby is giving back to the village where she grew up in her native Senegal. In 2009, she started a school, College Adja Penda Ba, with the goal of giving girls not only a chance to continue their formal education, but also to empower them economically by learning about agriculture and technology. Already a local success story, the school comprises two classrooms educating more than 50 students in 8th and 9th grade combined, the years when young girls are most likely to drop out of school.
In June 2008 while visiting Nioro, she was approached by a group of young high school girls and one of their teachers who asked if she could help them to set up a library. They felt that a library would provide them with required textbooks, give them a good place to study after/before class and enrich their education through exposure to different kinds of books and literature. They also dreamed of getting a computer and internet access to be able to learn about the rest of the world and possibly connect with other students around the globe! Thanks to friends and neighbors in Arlington VA, Khady was able to raise $2,390 June of 2009 in the “Taste of Africa” fundraising dinner she had organized before her summer trip to Senegal.
Promoting Modern Agriculture
In addition to traditional academic subjects, CAPB will offer programs to increase students’ awareness of modern agricultural techniques, market opportunities, and entrepreneurship skills that will enable them to shift from subsistence to commercial agriculture.