Laurinda watches in awe as her classmates – other schoolgirls – attempt to decorate their first ever tart. She’s great at embroidery, but has been trying to take on other challenges for a while, and the tart is this week’s challenge. A simple pastry to go with the coffee, which will be forgotten as soon as the last crumb is gone from the plate.
But Laurinda takes in the image as if she were at the most important lecture of her life. She doesn’t bake the cake for her own pleasure. She regularly appears in the Foyer kitchen with one task: to learn as much as possible. To practise as much as possible. Here, such knowledge means employability, and a job means security, a roof over your head, a meal and access to medicine.
Today, the kitchen smells of limes. A smell that will long be associated with new opportunities for our students. The difficult situation in Laurinda’s home forced the girl to drop out of primary school. Such a young child could not secure an education on her own, and when the girl had grown up and was able to earn her first money, no educational institution wanted to accept her at the age of 20.
That’s how she ended up in our Foyer – a school that doesn’t put up barriers, but looks for solutions.
The labour market in Senegal soaks up workers with specific skills at an incredible rate, and because the school is managed in an exemplary way and taught by masters in their craft, our students are guaranteed employment afterwards.
The condition? They must finish their education. Ambition is not a problem; each pupil understands that such an opportunity may not come again.
However, a school is not just about the building and the teachers and the burning ambition. It is also the simplest things that we have to provide: a bag of flour, sugar, sticks of butter, a bag of limes. This is an expense beyond the means of our schoolgirls.
A chance for Laurinda costs around PLN 23 – as much as the ingredients for her tart. Another skill which she will be able to bring with her to her first stable employer. Or maybe she will open her own business?
The young woman’s story kicks off Global Action Week for Education – close to our heart because in countries like Senegal, where we are fighting for equal opportunities, education is crucial for our charges to become independent.
By visiting GoodWorks 24/7 and donating ingredients for Laurinda’s baked goods, you are giving her the chance for a good, safe life.