Academy-award winning actor Tom Hanks has donated $50,000 to the Freeplay Foundation. The foundation will use the donation to purchase 1,000 Lifeline radios for a primary school distance education program in Tanzania developed by EDC’s International Education Systems Division and funded by the U.S. Department of Labor. The Mambo Elimu (Swahili for “education is everything”) project uses radio to deliver a literacy and life skills curriculum to 15,000 children with little or no access to formal education. The project reaches child laborers, those at risk of engaging in child labor and other out-of-school children. In addition to teaching literacy and numeracy, the programs enable students to learn important life skills related to health, hygiene, nutrition, and HIV/AIDS prevention.
“These Lifeline radios are a key link in providing disenfranchised children with access to information,” said Suzanne Simard, EDC Chief of Party for the project. “All of the people who have been working on Mambo Elimu—EDC staff, Tanzanian government representatives and community members—are incredibly grateful to the Freeplay Foundation and Tom Hanks.”
Originally published on June 1, 2005