Using Education as a Means to End Poverty and Create Hope

by | Jul 22, 2022 | Heartivist Of The Week

When Alagie Ndow was only nine, his parents divorced leaving him to be looked after by his aunt who lived in a poor, remote village. As he struggled to complete his secondary education, Alagie connected with various volunteer service programs that not only helped him to find his way, they inspired him to become a teacher. In 2016, he founded the Inspiring Young-Stars, a Gambian non-profit focused on transforming the lives of children through education and service, and created a library that serves as a community service haven for youth. 

Today, this dynamic leader, social entrepreneur and education champion is a Full Circle Learning Country Coordinator for The Gambia where he works with children, schools and the community-at-large to offer training and mentorship while developing his own community service programs. Believing that education is the best means of breaking the cycle of poverty for children, he has created a new project that helps young people become environmental agents of change within their schools and communities.

Situated in the western region of The Gambia, this environmental leadership service program challenges junior and secondary school students to create an equitable future for all while facing the complex challenges presented by climate change. With the help of The Pollination Project, fifty students from four secondary schools along with ten youth leaders from the community library, work in collaboration to develop a deeper understanding of their environment, a sense of stewardship, and better nutritional habits. In addition, they work to enhance their academic abilities and gain vocational skills that will allow them to create possibilities and embrace opportunities in the future.

“I want to say thank you to The Pollination Project for the wonderful service and support with this program. This work strengthens character and invites participants to apply their creativity to the development of agricultural innovations and more. It teaches valuable life skills and will help a new generation of young leaders to serve their schools, local communities and the global community as well,” said Alagie.

One component of the program serves as both an educational tool and a bridge to many areas of the community, the micro-gardening project. This part of the program brings children from the community library together with youth volunteers and Charter School students in the hopes of  mastering the ability to create a thriving vegetable and crop producing garden. It not only provides hands-on training and life skills, it serves as a bridge for connection and understanding between youth and community elders.

“In February 2016, during my inaugural speech for The Inspiring-Young Stars, I promised to increase educational and community service opportunities for youth, especially children and girls. I promised to be a great inspiration and to inject trust in the heart of my community. Since then, youth participation and community service have increased significantly. Today our organization has become a key player in supporting thousands of youth and women across the region,” Alagie stated.

As Alagie Ndow continues to focus his heart and passion on creating educational and community service opportunities for youth, he has the ability to create true change for these young people, this community and all those around the world.

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🌟 Empowering Through Play! 🌟

Nature Trust (Tamilnadu, India) launched the project, "Enhance the Skills of Children with Disabilities through Play," supported by one of our seed grants 🎉✨ Timed with World Autism Awareness Day 2024, this initiative resonates with the theme of "Empowering the Autistic Voices."

In particular, the grant allowed Nature Trust to provide specially curated play materials to 20 remarkable children with diverse disabilities. These tools were thoughtfully selected to ignite their development and unlock their potential. 🧩🎨

At the distribution event held on March 31st, the atmosphere was filled with joy as children and parents expressed gratitude for the newfound importance of play in their lives. 💖👦👧 The presence of local leaders underscored the significance of inclusive initiatives like this one.

Beyond distribution, Nature Trust volunteers engaged with the children, creating lasting connections and memories. 🤝 

Through the power of play, Nature Trust is fostering a more inclusive world where every child has the opportunity to thrive and reach their full potential. 🌈 

Let's continue spreading joy and empowerment through play! 

#EmpowerThroughPlay #InclusiveCommunities 🌟 
#childrenwithdisabilities #autism #supportchildren #kindness #heartivism #India
It's Volunteer Month! 🌟 🌟 🌟 Today we celebrate our grant advisors working on Economic Development focus area.

By meticulously selecting projects for our seed grants, they're not just funding ideas—they're empowering communities and sparking transformative change. 

Join us in celebrating their invaluable efforts and the positive impact they're creating together!

🔸 Eric Anorrey (Ghana)
🔸 Mariam Nakiryowa (Uganda)
🔸 Jean-Marie Zihalirwa (DRC)
🔸 Emily Logiron Asekon (Kenya)
🔸 Georgia Bernbaum (USA) 
🔸 Herve Tsoala Kuete (Cameroon)
🔸 Jackson Bizimungu (Rwanda)
🔸 Okumu Dickson (Uganda)
🔸 Samuel Litunya (Kenya)


#volunteermonth #volunteer #heartivism #economicdevelopment #change #empoweringcommunities
The Green Earth Initiative (#Cameroon) is a project dedicated to educating and empowering students about climate change, sustainable development, and environmental challenges, that has received a seed grant from The Pollination Project in 2023. With a focus on fostering environmental protection and conservation, the initiative establishes Eco-clubs and Environment Clubs in schools, providing students with the tools to learn, engage, and take action in their communities.

Since receiving the grant from TPP, the Green Earth Initiative has expanded its reach, now encompassing 9 additional schools across two regions/cities, surpassing its initial goal of 5. 
This expansion was made possible by the overwhelming interest from school authorities and the growing number of volunteers and team members.

Through the support of TPP and other partners, the project's environmental education programs, awareness campaigns, and initiatives have impacted over 8000 students in two cities of Cameroon. Additionally, the initiative has planted over 600 trees, launched 5 Environment/Eco Clubs, and distributed over 150 adapted waste bins produced from recycled plastics, contributing to proper waste management practices.

The seed grant from The Pollination Project has been instrumental in catalyzing the growth and success of the Green Earth Initiative, enabling it to make a tangible difference in the lives of students and communities, while fostering a culture of environmental stewardship and sustainability. 

#environmentprotection #seedgrant #heartivism #environmentaleducation