Unlock Foundation is a non-profit organization that seeks to address critical educational gaps in rural African schools.We work with teachers, students and community members on small sustainable projects that ensure students receive the best primary education possible.
I spoke to Scott Karrel the founder of Unlock Foundation to find out more about this organisation. People from all over the world have been pledging their support to Unlock Foundation by posting their pictures holding cards of what they unlock and some have even gone to the extent of donating money and supporting the organisation through buying their T-shirts.
Q: Since its formation has the unlock foundation achieved it’s short term goals?
A: Unlock Foundation was established on the ideals that all children deserve the best primary education possible, and I remain confident that we are doing our best to achieve our goals. We are a very small organization, but we know that by improving a school, you are not only providing one child with a pathway out of poverty, but you are helping the family, the community, and the country as a whole.
Q: Your mission seeks to address critical educational gaps in rural African schools: Do you have an immediate plans to expand the program to other African countries?
A: We have a made a commitment to our three partner schools, 2 in Namibia and 1 in Ghana, and we will not expand to other countries until every student at our partner schools can regularly attend class, meet educational standards, and more importantly, the schools and communities can sustain that level of success themselves.
Q: How has the response from Stakeholders been like?
A: The core of Unlock Foundation are the students, teachers, and community members who develop and implement each project. Ultimately, this is not my organization, it is their organization. There is a great African proverb that says, “If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” I think that represents this organization, Unlock Foundation is just a partner, it is up to each school to be the change.
Q: Looking at the level of education in Africa, how do you think we can make sure that we raise educated children?
A: I believe the key to raising an educated child, is to ensure that each child has the resources, support, and skills to reach their potential. That could mean anything from textbooks to well-trained teachers to proper school infrastructure. It truly does take a village to raise a child, and that means every child. Too often those in rural communities, those that have a mental disability, and even just girls are left behind, all children must have the opportunity to succeed.
Q: What are your long-term plans as an organisation?
A: I will be traveling to Namibia in September to meet with our in-country staff to plan our long-term goals. We hope to continue to inspire, empower, and further UNLOCK more dreams for children across Africa.
Q: How are children not enrolled at schools catered for or is Primary education free ?
A: While primary education might be free, children in rural communities face enormous challenges each and every day. These barriers range from health issues like Malaria, water-borne illnesses, other expenses like supplies and uniforms, unsafe school environments, and long distances to travel to school.
Q: Are there any plans to move into secondary education?
A: We are now focused on building a positive support system for primary school- aged students.
To learn more, you can visit .unlockfoundation.org
Photographer: Sandor Oroszi