Some of the greatest supporters of Mercy Beyond Borders' work in Sudan are children here in the United States. Young children. When they learn that MBB is supporting the first school for girls in the whole of Southern Sudan, they are intrigued. When they find out that $100 will pay tuition, lodging and food for an entire year for one student, they are hooked!
The first school to jump on board with MBB was St Francis Elementary School in Bakersfield California. The leadership of one teacher, Annemarie Anchordoquy, generated a creative burst of energy among her students, who subsequently raised nearly $2,000 for their "sisters" at St. Bakhita School in Narus, Sudan. Their enthusiasm spilled over to the Parents Group, too, who then made a sizeable contribution to the work of Mercy Beyond Borders. The picture shows the upper classes at St Bakhita School receiving postcards from the students at St Francis School in May 2008.
The most recent school to take up the challenge of providing education for girls in Sudan is St Mary's Elementary School in Sacramento, California. Though the school has fewer than 400 students, they raised $1,600 for St Bakhita School in one week! Amazing! Kudos to teacher Mary Jo Riehl and Principal Laura Allen, but most of all to their students' remarkable compassion-in-action. When I met with the student body on Jan 29th to share pictures and stories of Sudan, I was incredibly impressed by their engagement, their intelligent questions, and their evident caring for their fellow students half-a-world away.
What if every American student cared this much and acted this effectively for their peers in developing countries? What a different world we would have....