Kusasa Scholarship fund
What is Kusasa Asbl
Kusasa means ‘Tomorrow’ in the Ndebele Language of Southern Zimbabwe. So named in that our actions and activities are focussed on what we can do today to contribute to a better tomorrow.
We all know that Africa is rich in resources, gold, diamonds, oil, wildlife and much is done to optimise these resources and yet Africa’s greatest resource lies in one with untapped potential and the ability to bring about real sustainable change … the women. Empowering women in Africa would increase the overall country GDP, improve family health and reduce child mortality, as such it remains one of the untapped resources with the most opportunity for improvement of conditions of Africa.
There are many things that can be done to improve conditions in Africa and evidence suggests that pouring money into Aid which never ends up helping where it should, diverted by top heavy organisations, greedy politicians and general corruption. We therefore opted to help where we could with the majority of the funds going to the grass roots initiatives that we establish. Our focus is on education and a very specific area of education. We have identified that there are a number of organisations and charities that are putting great effort into getting girls into education at junior school level. This is of course an essential first step … for every year of education that a girl has she increases her earning potential. The problem comes when junior school ends and it is time to go to high school and this is where the numbers of girls attending drops off significantly and the tragedy of this is that it is at this level that a girl’s education really starts to make a significant difference to her future and her ability to fully participate equally in society.
Certainly there are stories of women who have managed to overcome the adversity of a lack of education but the vast majority still suffer for it. At this vulnerable time girls are
• traded into marriage at a young age, even when the legal limit is higher this does not prevent a common law marriages of young girls to much older men, which are often abusive relationships
• girls are pressed into service in poor paying jobs with long hours, hard conditions and little hope of escaping the cycle of poverty that affects up to 65% of women in Africa
• teenage pregnancies are typical and without education research shows that child mortality increases and the health and well-being of children is impacted.
Kusasa aims to raise scholarship funds to enable girls to attend high school, university or vocational training courses to escape this cycle.
• For every year of education girls increase their earning potential by 20%,
• Education reduces teenage pregnancies and decreases child mortality
• On average girls typically only get 5 years of education which is usually interrupted by family obligations and chores and so often need to repeat a year.
• Poverty is the greatest barrier to furthering a girl’s education
• According to UNESCO sub-Saharan Africa has the highest rates of education exclusion in the world, with Africa having 40% of children below the age of 15.
• Research has shown that education is vital to gender advancement.
Providing girls with the opportunity to advance their education will enable them to not only earn a better standard of living but make a more significant contribution to their families and community.
To achieve this our program is starting in Zimbabwe were we are working with local organisations to achieve the very best results. We hope that our success will enable us to expand our efforts across many more African countries.