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1. South Sudan is the world’s newest nation and also one of the most fragile. Decades of war and violence have decimated communities, services, infrastructure and social capacity. In a world of plenty, at a time of year when the developed world indulges to excess, we need to remember those corners of the planet where people know only plenty of poverty and an excess of tragedy.

  1.  2. We believe education is the single most effective tool for breaking the poverty cycle. But in South Sudan the statistics are beyond shocking. 70% of children aged between six and 17 have never set foot in a classroom. Less than 10% manage to complete primary education, one of the lowest completion rates in the world. Every parent or grandparent in the UK, every child who takes school for granted, should take a moment to reflect on what that means.
  2.  3. Here’s another thing: The rural Diocese of Wau, the area in which Global Care’s partners are based, has 13 primary schools. Nine of them meet under trees. Yes, school buildings are a priority.
  3.  4. But trained teachers are MORE of a priority. There are only two trained teachers in the entire area, and one batch of trainees. Global Care’s Christmas Appeal aims to fund another 50 trainee teachers, to begin studying in January 2018. They will teach in the mornings and study in the afternoons.
  4.  5. Only 13% of primary schools in South Sudan offer the whole primary cycle, from Grades 1 – 8. Training more teachers will help solve that problem. Then maybe more children will be able to graduate primary school.
  5.  6. There are only 44,000 secondary school pupils in the whole of South Sudan. Of course there are. How can kids achieve secondary level, when they can’t complete primary? How can they complete primary when schools don’t offer the full cycle? How can schools offer the full cycle without enough teachers? Train teachers. Make a difference.
  6.  7. In South Sudan, 70% of the population are aged under 30. Most have never been to school. Most have never known their nation at peace. We can’t solve all their problems in one fell swoop. If only we could. But helping children access education will give them the tools to start looking for their own solutions. Train teachers. Make a difference.
  7.  8. So what do you think young people do, when they can’t get to school, they’re illiterate and innumerate, with no opportunity for change? Many try to scratch a living from the land, as so many previous generations have done. Many others end up joining militia, in a search for meaning and power, and as a source of livelihood. After all, you are fed by the militia you join. And so the destructive cycle of war and violence continues, and the hope of change becomes ever more distant. Training teachers offers young people an alternative source of employment, and gives fractured communities hope that change is possible.
  8.  9. It costs just £25 to pay for tuition and accommodation for one trainee teacher for one month. In the context of the enormous developmental challenges facing South Sudan, that’s something simple and concrete that most of us here in the UK could easily provide, which will genuinely help to make a difference. £100 covers one term. £200 covers the whole year. Three years of training creates a fully-trained teacher. That’s £600. That’s a person with hope, able to bring hope.
  9.  10. If you need more good reasons after all this, then I’m not sure what to say! If you want to make a donation, click here. As an extra incentive, if you need one, thanks to the Big Give Christmas Challenge, all online donations to our appeal between noon on Tuesday 28 November and noon on Tuesday 5 December will be doubled in value at no extra cost to you, up to a total of £4000. The Big Give Christmas Challenge is the UK’s largest match-funding campaign, and it’s the first time Global Care has taken part.
  10. .Help us train teachers and so make a difference.
  11. Give during the Big Give and help us double the difference.
  12. What’s not to like?