Additionally, the funds used for this project were part of an employer matching gift. During our COVID-19 fundraiser, a $250 donation turned into a $500 matching gift. When the $500 arrived in late July, we immediately applied it to this project.
Finally, these photos show how your generosity inspired Annita to give back. The academic students started wearing theirs in August. We hope the vocational students will wear theirs later this month. Thank you for helping a graduate Pay it forward!
Your amazing and generous heart paved the way for 75 young men and women to graduate on March 24th, 2018. These dedicated students showed up each day to learn valuable skills and applied this knowledge in the classroom and on field assignments. You and our students were co-investors in this life-changing experience. You, as their valued Classroom Hero and Star Supporter, helped them cross the finish line by supplying much-needed learning materials and supplies. You are the reason for the successful completion of their desired course. You are celebrated and appreciated by each and every student. Thank you for making this important milestone possible in their lives!!!
Our students started their celebration on Thursday, March 22nd, 2018, by holding their class night at our center. This night was where they could be together one last time as a class. It was also during this evening where they received their medals.
Photo (left): Kelvin Fomba giving students their medals. Photo (right): Kelvin Fomba with two Auto Mechanic students, Winner Flomo (left) and Yasah Pewee (right).
Your students proudly wearing their medals.
The commencement ceremony started noon (GMT) on Saturday, March 24, 2018. Students and their families gathered in our hall for this momentous occasion. One of our special guests, Mr. Ericson H. York (owner of York Plaza Hotel), presented each student with their diploma. Our center was overflowing with cheers and joy from our graduates and their families.
Cover of diploma folder.
Photo (left): Some of the students’ family and friends. Photo (right): Roseline Sonday, a graduate of cosmetology and youth leader.
Mr. York presenting computer graduate and youth leader Dauda Dassin with his diploma.
Our students in their caps and gowns. Do you notice the young men are all wearing gold bow ties?
You gave our graduates a reason to smile and feel proud! Thank you!
Our heart is filled with joy for what you have accomplished for these ambitious Liberian Youth. Again, we stay Thank You, Thank You, Thank You for your support!!!
Your compassionate giving opens doors for young Liberians who need support in furthering their educational goals. You have shared our journey of empowering Liberian Youth (children, teenagers, and young adults) in Liberia with educational resources (scholarships, school supply drives, etc), leadership development (youth virtual exchanges and workshops) and vocational training courses in the fields needed in their country. You have contributed to our growth by providing the means to offer programs that our youth have requested.
Your generosity toward our “Become a Classroom Hero” campaign will soon be at work! We wired $4,300 on Friday to purchase the learning materials for the five courses: Catering, Cosmetology, Electricity, Plumbing, and Tailoring. Some of our students will be completing their courses in November, and it is important that we can deliver the hands-on training they need, so they can find employment or start a business when they graduate. We will continue to promote this campaign so we can raise the remaining funds for needed practical materials.
Recently, at the “A Gathering of Stars” House Party, Miriam Monono Isaac (Board Chair & Sustaining Star Supporter), shared how your charitable contributions are used for the betterment of our students. She highlighted how our commitment and resolve toward helping young Liberians to become self-sufficient has been made possible because of your continued support. Please watch to her compelling talk about why supporting Uniting Distant Stars is a good investment and benefits our youth in their personal development.
June 2nd, 2017, marked our four-year anniversary as an official non-profit organization. Your generous contributions each year have made a profound difference in the lives of children and youth in Liberia. Your gracious commitment to walk this journey with us in building and growing a grassroots organization allows us to serve ambitious and eager Liberian youth. Your compassion and dedication are what lights the hearts and minds of Liberia’s promising young stars. Your unyielding support makes this all happen and we are eternally grateful. Thank you.
June 1st is the start of our fourth month of vocational training courses. Our nine-month courses will reach their halfway mark on June 15th. The results of these first four months are astounding. As our faithful partners in doing good, you have enabled youth to acquire skills that they can apply with confidence. During the next five to seven months, our students will require more materials to achieve their course requirements.
This month we will be launching our “Become a Classroom Hero” campaign to raise funds for five courses that need extra learning materials to ensure they receive the marketable skills to graduate and start a job or business. This post will share some of the latest photos of various courses and students accomplishments. You will soon see how your investment is returning smiles of success on the faces of our students.
Auto Mechanics Course
Kelvin Fomba, UDS Co-Founder and Country Director, works with his students three times a week and most of the time they are working on vehicles. At times, Kelvin provides classroom lectures when they are moving onto a new concept. The two photos below are from a classroom discussion on June 1st.
You encourage these students to learn.
You engage these students in asking questions to understand.
This is our largest course with over 40 students divided into four classes that meet three times a week. Our students are nearing the end of the Microsoft Word section. Saturday, June 3rd, all students from each class took a test to measure their knowledge of Microsoft Word. The students walked way feeling confident and proud of what they are learning. Kelvin, who is also one of the teachers of this course, said, “I cannot afford to stop doing this because look at the smiles on these beautiful faces.”
Your generosity brought smiles to these beautiful faces.
You give these students the reason to focus on their exam.
You made this computer lab possible.
Your continued support uplifts our student’s spirits.
The students in this course are advancing each and every day. In these first four months, they went from plaiting (braiding) hair that was tied on a string to working on each other or volunteers. They also are now providing manicures with custom designs on artificial. They continue to provide free haircuts to children in the neighborhood to gain experience and give back.
You spark that inner talent of each student.
You give our students reason to enjoy their work.
You encourage her to be precise and thoughtful in her work.
You guide students to produce results like these nails.
You are the example for these students to give back.
We’d like finally to introduce this 12-month course. This is one of the courses that is need of learning materials. The instructor has received periodic contracts which he can bring the students into the field and apply the knowledge they learn during their lectures. Gratefully, the instructor has been bringing some of the tools and materials to give practical application of this trade. Our goal for this course is to provide the tools, pipes and fittings, and other basic materials so that they can understand how to install or repair any plumbing in between opportunities to go in the field.
Your dedication motivates these students to learn despite the challenges.
The instructor is empowered by you to share his knowledge with these young minds.
This 9-month course started two months after the other ones. We have provided sewing course in the past such as our Backpacks for Peace Service Learning Project. We have an interest in this course but students are struggling to pay the $75 fee. Again as we shared before, most of this is returned to the students in uniforms, ID Cards, and basic learning materials such as course handouts. We started with four students and increased to six. Students that are in their later twenties or earlier thirties are showing a greater interest in tailoring.
Students of all ages are welcomed to gain skills from your whole-hearted support.
Student ID Cards
After some search, we found someone to make our student ID cards. As each student received theirs in the last few days, they were beaming with pride. The ID Card and Uniform allow the students to identify as Rising Stars in our program.
Our students now wear their ID Cards with great pride because of you.
You should feel honored and proud of how your charitable deeds are changing young Liberian lives for the better. You have continued to invest in our students, and the return is not measured in dollars and cents, but in confidence and smiles.
Thank you for being a valued and sustaining Star Supporter of Uniting Distant Stars children and youth!