“Liberian citizens should not have to choose between the certainty of starvation and the possibility of contracting the virus.” These were the words of Teach For Liberia’s (TFL) CEO, Desmond Diggs, at the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic in the country.
These words guided TFL’s inaugural cohort of Teacher Fellows as they designed an intervention to provide support and awareness to their placement communities and partners in Monrovia & Clay Ashland as well as Beh Town and Vincent Ward in Bomi County. The Fellows, top-performing recent university graduates who are placed in local schools for two years to teach, sprung into action.
“Cultivating leadership in the fellows is an ongoing part of the program, and this unprecedented threat was an opportunity to evidence said leadership,” TFL said in a statement issued last week.
The teacher fellows served as an integral part of the thought planning process with the core team to formulate the plan shared with partners. An initial $25,000 USD was made available, thanks to the Cummings Africa Foundation (CAF) with the intent of impacting 3,000 citizens. Since the project’s inception, more than 4,000 students and parents have benefited from food rations, face masks, and awareness materials in both standard and Liberian English to ensure the message reaches the most at-risk populations. Additionally, the project extended its impact to local religious communities partnering with both Trinity Episcopal Church’s outreach efforts and Blama See Mosque and Public School during the height of Ramadan celebrations.
Through a partnership with the Health Federation of Liberia, which provided training to TFL staff to guide the safe distribution of materials, an opportunity was identified to support frontline healthcare workers who have been at the forefront of the fight against the pandemic in the course of performing their essential duties of testing and caring for COVID-19 patients.
“TFL would like to thank all of its partners who made the distribution a success: CAF, The Ministry of Education, the Government of Liberia, The Health Federation of Liberia, The Liberia Initiative For Empowerment (LIFE), Philimena.com, Williete’s Safe House, LIB Delivery, The Liberian Medical and Dental Association, John F. Kennedy Medical Center, and a host of individual donors who donated supplies and resources,” the organization said.
Teach For Liberia, Inc. (TFL) is a Liberian NGO that addresses the educational crisis. We enlist Liberia’s most promising leaders and position them to ensure that all Liberian children can attain an excellent education. After the fellowship, fellows gain access to a network of 67,000+ alumni globally, opening doors in professional and educational endeavors. TFL is a formal partner of the Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Education. TFL is a member of Teach For All (TFA), a growing global network of 53 independent partner organizations with a shared vision of expanding educational opportunities to all children in their respective countries and communities. To learn more, partner, support, or apply for TFL’s fellowship, visit teachforliberia.org, or follow @teachforliberia on all social media platforms. We invite all talented graduates (minimum BSc) to join this critical movement by applying at teachforliberia.org. Currently, applications are being evaluated, and female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.