In its place, we offer the essential educational experience that can empower those living there to become self-sufficient, take control of their destiny and integrate into society more fully. In that process, we help children and adolescents avoid the seduction of criminal activity, organized crime and/or joining in armed conflict as a way out of poverty – a temptation not uncommon in areas with little hope for the future. Our focus on opening doors to education addresses a primary underlying cause to poverty. Here, a minimal monetary investment has the potential of having a disproportionate human impact, and of doing so in an extraordinarily meaningful way.
Developing Minds Foundation creates, sponsors and supports various educational programs that contribute towards the further personal development of young students. Programs may range from after-school assistance, sports initiatives and specialized skills training.
Access to Basic Education
Our contribution is fundamentally based on providing access to basic education for those who otherwise may have limited opportunities. A new school in a high-risk area may conceivably make available an education to hundreds or thousands of students over the course of several years, consequently resulting in a chance for many families to experience a better quality of life. One of our chief objectives is to improve literacy for residents living in exceptionally challenging circumstances, where neglect makes them vulnerable to having poor reading and writing skills as well as languishing comprehension levels. Experience and research show that higher levels of literacy – reading and writing at a level adequate to functioning successfully in society – can increase job opportunities and access to higher education, but also may result in a range of benefits such as better health and more meaningful participation in the community.
Vocational Training & Skills
We offer programs to teach technical skills to people so that they may develop an expertise that places them on a viable career track. Our efforts are intended to teach practical skills that enable them to compete in the workplace, pursue legitimate opportunities and, in certain circumstances, sidestep the lure of quick money through shortsighted ventures.
We promote the teaching of fundamental values that go beyond what is typically learned at the school desk. Our intent is to support ways to create a whole person who can integrate into and contribute to civil society. This may include exposure to religion and faith, and may also extend to programs that use sports, music and the arts to inculcate kids with important values while simply being kids. Some of these programs allow children to learn by playing with others on teams, figuring out how to work with one another toward achieving a common goal, discovering problem-solving skills to peacefully resolve disputes, creating opportunities for leadership, finding joy in expressing oneself and building confidence.
Developing Minds Foundation contributes to the physical construction of schools and learning institutions to ensure that adequate infrastructure is in place to provide an adequate learning environment for students.
Building New Schools
The efforts of the Developing Minds Foundation are predominantly oriented toward building new schools in areas where there is a dire need – such as urban shantytowns in cities where overcrowding or inadequate accommodations necessitates the creation of a new facility. Creating the physical infrastructure so that at-risk kids have a classroom and school in which to come together is the foundational component to providing basic education. Our belief is that putting in place adequate schools is the critical first step to putting kids living in distressed areas on equal footing with others who are more fortunate.
Refurbishing Old Schools
As part of our series of programs, we also partner with existing schools that require substantial improvements to continue functioning. These renovations may range from providing new roofs to installing electrical systems throughout the school. We also help schools that have reached beyond their maximum capacity and can no longer accommodate their student population by building onto the existing facility.