Love in a Bag
Rose grew up in Ajegunle, one the slum communities in Lagos, Nigeria, where access to basic quality education is a luxury for most children. Many children are often forced to abandon their education because their parents simply cannot afford tuition and school supplies. The cost of school supplies changes from year to year, and the list has grown in size, making it harder for parents to purchase. Many families who were already struggling financially lost their income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, which made it impossible to afford school supplies that their children needed. With no access to resources, learning became a challenging endeavor as poverty pushed more and more children from the slum community towards illiteracy.
“No parent will intentionally not provide all their child requires to be successful in life if it is within their means. Some of us try to do the best we can by providing what we can afford, and it may not seem enough but we try,” one of the parents said to Rose. She thought about gathering donations to buy school supplies for children but that would constitute a one time solution that would not ensure children had the necessary supplies every school year. Rose envisioned a classroom filled with children equipped with basic school supplies for improved learning outcomes. Determined to make this happen, she started a project on the Peace First platform.
Her idea was simple: along with a team of volunteers, she would enlist the help of schools to recycle waste and sell it for profit which would go towards purchasing school supplies for children. Schools and parents would provide recyclable waste, the project team would sell it to waste recycling centers and use the funds to provide 50 students with school supplies each school term. And so “Waste for Learning Resources” was born. A project that supports children in the slum community of Ajegunle continue their education by providing them with textbooks, learning materials and stationary. Rose notes that parents of the students have become more intentional about waste management after learning they could generate funds from recycling to support their children’s learning.
In its first round, the project supported 100 students with learning materials - double the number it had intended to support when Rose first created the project on the Peace First platform. Rose and her team intend to expand beyond Ajegunle into other slum communities in Lagos supporting more families in need to use recycling to fund their children’s learning needs and more children to continue their education with the resources they need to succeed.