Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Education Brings Opportunity

Vittana, a fellow Seattle based non-profit, has successfully funded the education of 1,000 students in 10 developing countries. They have done this through micro-loans and donations from the public. The micro-loans are being paid from micro-donations from around the globe.

But these are not just donations, because education ultimately creates individuals that are better able to support themselves and their families. Vittana claims that its students earn nearly three times their original income after graduating. Bernarda Esmilsen Escobar, Vittana’s 1,000th student, previously made $9 per day, but after graduating with a nursing degree, she should be making more than $20 a day. 99% of Vittana students repay their loans.

Now imagine this success on a larger scale. If donations can help fund the education of 1,000 students, imagine what money from a nation could do. Individual donors are extremely important in the fight against global poverty, but foreign aid from wealthier countries is also a necessary part. Countries have the ability to give much larger amounts of money. This means Vittana’s successes on a much larger scale.

-Sami Ressler