|Who We Are
The Liberia Education Project (LEP) began as a result of a vision by Jacob G. Madehdou, a member of the Somerton United Methodist Church (SUMC), Philadelphia, PA and native of Liberia, West Africa. SUMC is a relatively small church in Northeast Philadelphia (less than 200 members and a weekly attendence of 50).
In May, 2008, the Administrative Council of the Somerton United Methodist Church voted unanimously to accept the vision, and to work with Jacob to make this vision a reality. Thus the operation of LEP began. We worked with various organizations and individuals to gather supplies, financial support and logistical assistance to collect and ship school supplies to children in Liberia. These included churches, school classrooms, university students and professors. Our core group consists of four (4) men: Pastor David Brown, Dennis Fisher, Compton Chase and Jacob Madehdou. The first shipment of supplies was sent to Liberia and arrived at the Free Port of Monrovia in January, 2009.
Fullfilling Our Vision
In Dec. 08 and Jan. 09, Jacob traveled to Liberia, West Africa. He went on a fact finding mission on behalf of the Liberia Education Project. While in Liberia, He traveled to several parts of the Country, including cities and villages. It was his first time going back home since the end of the civil war that took the lives over 200,000 people and virtually destroyed the infrastructures of the country.
He saw many children on street corners in the cities who could barely find a day’s meal, safe drinking water and no opportunity to enter a school. In the cities just few schools are in some operations and many lack teaching materials and supplies. Jacob saw first-hand the need for schools and self-sustaining vocations throughout Liberia, especially in the rural areas. We wish to share our vision of educating children with all who will listen over the next few weeks and months.
Education as the key to unlock the potentials of our young people is greatly in short supply in Liberia, especially for those disadvantaged young boys and girls in the Towns and Villages of rural Liberia who have no hope of ever stepping foot into a classroom. Therefore, as Christians we organize ourselves to establish and provide quality and affordable education to needy children and adults in Liberia.
We will seek to work in partnership with other individuals and organizations to provide the life changing KEY (Education) to the needy and forgotten children in the villages and street corners of Liberia. The Liberia Education Project will seek support and funding to accomplish the following goals:
- School construction and renovation
- Providing educational materials/supplies to needy schools and students
- Seek funding for scholarship opportunities for deserving students and teachers
- Conducting adult literacy programs
- Conducting teacher training programs
- Community health education
- Conducting vocational training
- Providing safe drinking water for schools and communities/villages
The Vocational Training will include the following as possible:
- Building trades
- Information Technology
- Home Economics
- The Arts
- Small business management
Currently we are working with residents of a village in Bong County to start a school in a present church building. We have provided some materials for the renovations to this facility. In the future we plan to assist the residents to construct a 10 room school building to serve the education needs of several villages in Kokoyah District, Bong County.
During the past year we gathered school supplies and shipped them to Liberia with the help of several churches and schools here in the USA. Students of three selected schools in three different counties were beneficiaries of these supplies.