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Class Act: Updates from the Karma Foundation

Class Act: Updates from the Karma Foundation

This September, the Karma Foundation helped the community expand the school in the village of Saahun, Sierra Leone adding three new classrooms, desks and chairs – and a cherry lick of yellow paint – ready for the return of the villages’ budding academics.

We set up the Karma Foundation in Sierra Leone to be a hand up, not a hand out. We give the eight villages we support in the Tiwai region the tools to empower themselves, whether that’s helping fund leadership programmes, build vital infrastructure or set up healthcare funds.

The way the Karma Foundation works means this school was built for and by the community it serves. It belongs to them.

We don’t aim to take the place of local government – these projects are all in the hands of the people and guided by our team on the ground, which is made up of local leaders.

So when Saahun’s leaders told us the school was getting overcrowded, we listened. The local section chief and school headmaster worked together to petition the government for an extension to the school.

After two years, the government agreed to supply a third of the funds, the community provided a third in the form of materials and labour – and a third of it came from the Karma Foundation.

Restrictions and illness meant there were delays, particularly with the roofing (it rains A LOT in the rainforest, funnily enough).

Covid-19 didn’t help, but the Karma Foundation was also able to provide social distancing training through LANN, a worldwide project that works with communities around the world at risk of being affected by malnutrition.

Finally the new classrooms are ready. We don’t need to convince you on education as a tool for powerful positive change. That’s why it’s a huge part of the work the Karma Foundation does on the ground.

These classrooms are just one of our initiatives. In the past, the community told us not many girls were being sent to school, and so with the help of local leaders, we came up with a solution.

For the past six years, The Karma Foundation has been funding bursaries for girls whose families couldn’t afford to send them to school.

This means that not only are more women and girls getting an education (668, to be precise), but research shows that by furthering the female members of society, you’re helping further the entire community.

And the positive impact continues, because this has influenced other parents to enroll their daughters in school. It’s a big win for everyone!

So remember, every time you buy a Karma drink, 1% of our revenue goes to the Foundation. By drinking our drinks, you’re helping to educate children, and so much more. Not bad going for a delicious fizzy drink.

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