Below is an article that appeared on the Sudan Sunrise blog, giving an update on the Turalei schools that Manute Bol started:
A Message from John Zogby
April 28, 2011
Dear Sudan Sunrise friends,
Because of the efforts of the late NBA legend Manute Bol, and with your generous donations to Sudan Sunrise, hundreds of children in South Sudan now attend school.
I was able to personally look Manute in the eye and say that I would help with his efforts to build schools in his native South Sudan, and since the untimely loss of Manute last year, I have stepped up my commitment to fulfill his dream by now serving as Chairman of the Board of Sudan Sunrise.
The first part of Manute’s dream will be realized on July 9, 2011, when South Sudan becomes the world’s newest nation, giving the people of the south the freedom for which Manute fought most of his adult life.
The second part of Manute’s dream is to give the children of South Sudan a new future through education. We are honored to have the NBA supporting Sudan Sunrise, and together we have set the high goal of completing two schools by South Sudan’s July independence. NBA Cares is living up to their name by generously providing a grant and, most importantly, by helping communicate Manute’s dream and supporting Sudan Sunrise’s fundraising efforts.
If you would like to know more, I commend an excellent one minute video produced by the NBA, and narrated by NBA Hall of Famer Kevin McHale, at http://www.nba.com/nba_cares/supportsudan.html
And, there is a new, three minute video update on Manute’s school in his home town of Turalei with Sudan Sunrise’s tireless Executive Director, Tom Prichard, who just returned from Turalei last week (http://www.vimeo.com/22838981). When you see the clips of children stating their desire to be doctors, teachers, pilots, etc., you will understand why this dream captured Manute’s heart and mine.
Thanks to Franklin Electric and their very generous gift of a high yield well, a solar-powered submersible pump and a water tower, the students now have all the clean water they need; and, thanks to the World Food Program the students once again have a nutritious, filling, free lunch.
These two schools have been founded by Lost Boys, who through their epic ordeal learned the value of education and are determined to bring education to their home villages. In a land divided by religion, this effort has a unique aspect of reconciliation when, in June, young volunteers are coming from Khartoum to Turalei to help complete the school as a demonstration of their admiration for the legacy of Manute Bol, their determination to do what they can to build reconciliation, and to bring a new day to the people of Sudan.
Children carry their chairs to school (if they have one). Chairs and desks are needed for the schools, along with a fence to keep cattle out. Over 350 children attend the Manute Bol Primary School in Turalei. Recent returnees from the North have swollen attendance at the school, heightening the need for five additional classrooms.
We need your help to fulfill Manute’s dream for education in South Sudan. Over 80% of the population of South Sudan is illiterate, and over two generations did not have the opportunity for an education.
At the Turalei school, about $130,000 is needed to add five more classrooms, kitchen, food storage, and an open air pavilion which will serve as a dining hall and multipurpose space. Around $50,000 is needed to begin construction of the James Lubo Mijak school in Nyarweng, Manute’s second school ($120,000 has been raised).
Please join us in bringing education to South Sudan.
Warm regards and peace,
John Zogby, Chairman
IBOPE Zogby International and Sudan Sunrise
P.S. In March, we sent funds to the Kinyiba Girls Boarding School in Kajo-Keji to build a fence around the dormitory to keep the girls safe, and Sudan Sunrise funded four teachers for the school in Paloi.