Aumazo – The Project
Aumazo, Inc.’s mission is best summed up by former Harvard President, Derek Bok: “If you think that education is expensive, try ignorance.” Specifically, we want people to understand the importance of educating girls in rural Cameroon and other countries in Africa. The organization’s mission is to empower girls in Cameroon with educational opportunities to attend high school in order to enjoy more successful lives as young adults. We will help girls stay in school by providing them with an environment conducive to learning. An environment where they are constantly reminded that their actions make a difference in their lives and that of their community. Also, we will introduce an adequate and appropriate instructional program with the necessary support.
Schooling is compulsory in the African nation of Cameroon, but Education is not free. Although a valuable asset to the present and future of the country, girls in Cameroon and in many developing countries continue to suffer the effects of educational neglect. Only few families can actually bear the burden of tuition and fees. According to the World Bank, 51% of Cameroonians live on less than $2 a day due to lack of fixed and stable income. The financial picture is even bleaker for rural inhabitants, who rarely have any incomes.
Presently, seeking a high school education requires moving to urban areas, where girls are challenged / threatened by hardships such as physical or sexual abuses. These experiences of social dislocation and no personal safety lead most to eventually drop out. The secondary education rate for girls in rural Cameroon is 17%. One viable solution is to develop community-based schools with free tuition. Project Aumazo is providing rural girls with such an opportunity.
Aumazo, Incorporated is a nonprofit organization designated 501(c) (3) by the Internal Revenue Service. Aumazo is determined to make a difference in the lives of the girls it will serve. The organization recognizes that, if given the opportunity, women and girls are often the engines of transformational economies in developing nations. Therefore, its primary goal is to make high school education and vocational training a viable option for girls in rural areas. The primary beneficiaries are rural girls in the west francophone Cameroonian village of Bankondji, where it is still uncommon for women to be educated and trained beyond middle school.
Founded in 2005, the organization intends to:
- Decrease rural exodus
- Stimulate girls’ interest in the entire education process
- Promote educational programs that strengthen girls’ resolve to pursue secondary education
- Provide organizational and curricular support to program administrators
- Counsel groups and individuals on the best strategies for furthering their educational goals
The Boarding School
In our new high school, girls will learn and thrive in an environment that recognizes their needs and untapped potential. Moreover, family and community involvement are central to the process.
Aumazo, Inc. is introducing a new tradition in rural Cameroon by extending secondary education to include high school for girls. We are proposing a curriculum that emphasizes the importance of literacy and gives special attention to the development of critical thinking skills. Moreover and given the economic challenges faced by rural communities, and in keeping with our commitment to social justice and environmental awareness, Aumazo’s pilot boarding school will also include a curriculum that helps students find gainful employment upon graduation if they do not continue higher education studies. Alongside the national curriculum, we will also include vocational education such as:
- Information Technology, with Internet Usage
- Agricultural Production & Food Processing
While nurturing their intelligence, our academy will also create new community leaders and positive role models with an enhanced sense of cultural pride and responsibility.
Using her own funds and with the help of some investors, Jacqueline Audigé (founder) has kick-started the construction of the new school building in Bankondji (check out our News and Updates). Currently, we are raising more money to complete the tuition-free boarding high school for girls. Our goal is to raise an additional $200,000. This will help pay for construction materials, furnishings, equipment, school supplies & books, and the first-year operating expenses.
By Fall 2013 and with your help, we will open the school doors to the first 50 girls.