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A ray of hope - Providence Action

Updated: Oct 10

It's nightfall in Yaounde, but we are not getting set for the luxury of a peaceful night of sleep; there is a call to duty and we are getting set for the harrowing 10-hour trip from Yaounde to Bamenda, with the usual interruptions due to the nature of the roads, police checks and more. There are children out there looking up to us to be able to have basic supplies for school. To mitigate the effects of the Anglophone crisis on access to education for children, the back-to-school project which started last year seeks to help a number of school dropouts who still have the zeal to continue schooling despite the situation. The project targets students who have lost their parent(s), guardian(s), or sponsor(s) as a result of the crises. Also, young people who are internally displaced and still desire to return to school are included. In a nutshell, we target young people between the ages of 10 to 21 years in the North West Region that the crisis has interfered with their ability to access education, essentially forcing them out of school. We only consider students who show the desire and the enthusiasm toward returning to school; students with dreams to help improve their communities; students with a good academic background. The Project entails continuous sponsorship, follow-up, and mentorship of students who meet the above-mentioned criteria.

To that effect, this project will reduce the prospect of increased criminal actions, child marriage, and early and unwanted pregnancies among young school dropouts in our community. The sustainability of this initiative will ensure the development of young leaders who will actively contribute to the development of Cameroon in the years ahead, as drivers of peace and lovers of education.

Last year, the first edition of the project was launched and through online campaigns and other strategies, we raised money to take up seven school dropouts under our wings. We have seen these children blossom in hope and happiness over the last academic year. This, to us, is our ultimate goal; helping those who have lost hope to revive their hope in a better future and to have faith in the society. This year, The second edition of this project was launched on the 5th of September 2022 with the aim of increasing the number of beneficiaries from seven to ten students. After 10 days of an intensive fundraising campaign by the Providence Action Team members, volunteers and partner organization (Open Dreams) and internal contributions by team members a total of 400.000FCFA ( 600 USD) was raised.

The second edition of the Back-To-School Edufund Campaign project 2022 was successful due to teams collaborative effort in organizing, fundraising, and planning. Some of these preparatory activities were carried out in person while others happened online over zoom meetings. After the successful execution of the fund-raising campaign, the prospects of the next phase were predictable; It was time for the Providence Action team to move to the implementation phase of the project. To that effect, from the 23rd to the 24th of September 2022 Providence Action team members from different parts of Cameroon assembled in Bamenda to implement the project. This part of the project took place in two phases as explained below.

Phase One: Visitation to schools and payment of beneficiaries’ tuition/registration fees

On Friday the 23rd of September 2022, the team, led by Nformi Melvis (Founder of Providence Action) moved to various schools (St Frederick Big Mankon, St Miriam Sonac Street, GBHS Downtown, FONAB High school Mile 3, Nkwen, GBHS Atiela Mile 4, Nkwen and CAMSCI Mile 4 Nkwen) to pay the fees of these 10 beneficiaries. Out of the ten students, the complete registration fees for four of the beneficiaries who were enrolled in government institutions were paid. On the other hand, because of the high cost, only a certain percentage (between 40% - 65%) of fees was paid for students who were enrolled in private schools. However, after coming to a reasonable agreement, their respective families were expected to cover the rest. (It should be noted that for all students who were enrolled in private schools, the decision was taken unanimously by their families and our team on the basis of the students' security and proximity to nearby government schools)

Phase Two: Gathering of students for orientation and sharing of school materials

The Next day (24th September 2022), we proceeded to the next phase during which all the beneficiaries, accompanied by their guardians assembled together at Living Hope Baptist Church Atua-Azire Bamenda. During this event the students were orientated on the importance of studying hard at school, living in peace with one another, and the different career opportunities open to them upon the completion of their education. School materials including pens, books, rulers, school bags, and erasers were shared out to them. Additionally, cash prizes donated by Minge Samuel, Linda Mkomodio Andoh and Elizabeth Afonkanyu were awarded to the top three students who had exceptional results in the previous academic year. This is a very crucial aspect of our project as our beneficiaries are expected to sign an agreement that will govern all parties involved and ensure accountability.

Does this mark the end of the project? Definitely not, as our initiative believes in self-directed learning founded upon assistance through one-on-one mentorship. We believe that these affected youths will need much more than just returning to school to become the leaders and peace builders we hope to nurture. Therefore As part of our model, we will also organize seminars and conferences centered on peace-building, mental health, and personal development, among others, to build our beneficiaries and help them cope with the stress of the conflict. By doing so, we hope to set them up for the real world, where they can fully unleash their potential and take ownership of their life.

Report by Nformi Melvis


Providence Action Team Members

  1. Nformi Melvis Nyaah

  2. Callis Vishiti

  3. Chancelyne W. Yein

  4. Miléne Majolie

  5. Minge Samuel Ngeve

  6. Enanga Andoh Linda

  7. Jesse Mundama

  8. Ebude Loveline Ewane

  9. Kumo Walters Nshom

  10. Muchuo Clifford

  11. Nkeh Gantar Constance

  12. Elizabeth Afokanyuy

  13. Tchinda Rabeli

  14. Bechem Ayuk

  15. Mbaku Shansel

  16. Kalamai Tafon

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