There is something amazing about the small role one can play, watching a nation being built one village at a time. Project Education Sudan (PES) was founded on the simple principles of community, self-sufficiency and hope for the people of southern Sudan through the support of indigenous organizations that make primary, secondary and adult education available for all. These principles I have always believed in, but what I experience in Sudan with PES was the product of these lived principles within three amazing communities in Jonglei. Talking with the teachers, community elders, and students within each of these villages brought home how important sustainable community partnerships are in birthing nations after long civil wars.I have spent time in Africa over the last 20 years working in leadership development and the amount relationship development and project completion that PES has been able to accomplish in the last 5 years is simple astounding.
The Women's College at the University of Denver, where I teach, is an undergraduate program for nontraditional women. We formed a "sister school" program with the boarding primary girls school in Southern Sudan. To celebrate our partnership, the students raised funds to purchase 600 bookpacks and 1600 pairs of underwear for the young girls at the school. The bookpacks and underwear were delivered in January 2010. The pictures of the girls receiving our gifts and the stories were wonderful. They were so appreciative and our TWC students were so impressed with the motivation of the Ayak Anguei students and with Project Education Sudan's commitment to the education of young females.
The relationship PES has with The Women's College University of Denver has been a very empowering experience for the girls at the only all girls primary school, Ayak Anguei in the area that PES helps build. The book packs filled with panties are an out ward symbol of pride for the girls that says" I am a student who is getting an education in a country where not too many girls have the opportunity". They wear them with pride and confidence!Thank you Dr. Carol Zak Dance for the inspiration you have provided for your women students to be able to fully participate in making a significant difference in the lives of girls in Sudan.