Cycle of Knowledge is a brand-new charity, based in the UK, but aiming to deliver our highly innovative learning platform in the Cunene province of southern Angola.
We have a unique method of bringing offline, off-grid, world-class digital learning to people in rural locations. The people we are targeting have had precious little chance of receiving any education. In Angola, school is compulsory for kids between ages 7 and 11, but over 4 million children have never attended primary school. A third of all children drop out of school, before completing primary school.
People live in a poverty cycle, and struggle to break free. Schools, where they exist, are often simply a blackboard on an easel, outside under the trees, where a single teacher teaches groups of up to 80 kids, of varying ages and abilities. When the rainy season sets in, no teaching can take place.
We are hoping to change this, but we cannot do so without your help. We are planning on employing some of the over 5000 Angolan teachers, that have gone over 6 months without being paid, to deliver our digital platform via cycling. We will be targeting rural villages without any electricity, and often without anything but very rough dirt tracks connecting them.
We need to fund a pilot scheme, and that involves purchasing two World Bicycle Relief Buffalo bikes, as well as several bits of technical equipment. All the kit needs to be shipped to northern Namibia, from where service delivery will take place. We chose Namibia, because it has vastly better infrastructure, making it easier to reach southern Angola.
We need to recruit and train initially one teacher, and we are aiming to deliver digital learning initially to 300 people. We are not targeting any specific age group, and people will be grouped together by ability, although we do intend to deliver some women-only sessions.
We have no other forms of funding, and we're just a small handful of people who believe passionately that ALL people deserve a chance to receive an education. Lessons will be video-based, and delivered in Portuguese - the same language as is used in Angolan schools.
We're not trying to replicate schools! Schools target children, and there are millions of young people and adults in Angola that have missed out on an education. Those are the people we wish to reach, as without doing this, most of them will never again have any opportunity to engage with education.
This will be informal learning, allowing people to participate as and when their lives allow them to. Much of the learning content will be delivered out of hours, after people stopped working for the day, as that for many is the only opportunity to engage with this.
Imagine your life, if you - as a 7 year old child - had to walk many miles, unaccompanied, through the African bush to get to school each day. You did that for perhaps three or four years, then had to stop attending school, to help your family survive through subsistence farming. Wouldn't you love to gain another chance at engaging with education?
In a country where telephone lines are mostly non-existent, and the only mobile phone signal is what occasionally spills over from the limited infrastructure in Namibia, wouldn't you love the opportunity to learn digital skills that can vastly increase your chances of being employed in one of the urban centres?
You can make this dream come true for others. You can help radically turn someone's life around.
Why don't you donate the amount you'd normally spend on buying coffee for a month? Sure, you'll be going without your take-away coffee for that month, but isn't that a tiny price to pay for helping to offer someone the chance of an education?
You can visit our web site at www.cycleofknowledge, or follow us on Twitter, at https://twitter.com/cycleknowledge
- Sue Flewitt
- Roger Key
- Lindsey Hall