IMC's Victoria Probert and CMD's Grace Schroeder Work Towards Better Futures for Girls in Liberia for the More Than Me Foundation
Victoria Probert ’13, IMC major, is one of the new interns to join the More Than Me Foundation’s Ithaca College campus’ intern team. CMD’s Grace Schroeder ’15 began the More Than Me Foundation initiative on the IC campus at the start of the spring semester, and it has since taken the IC campus by storm. Victoria began interning for The More Than Me Foundation in March 2012.
The More Than Me Foundation is a nonprofit organization that works to get girls in Liberia, West Africa, off the streets and into school. Katie Meyler, the founder, spends most of her work time in Liberia working with community leaders to identify girls who are at the highest risk of being sexually exploited and places them in The More Than Me Foundation’s scholarship program. The girls are not only provided with quality education but also with a nutritious meal every day as well as school supplies, uniforms, teachers and home visits to provide assistance when necessary.
The More Than Me Foundation’s interns are given great responsibility and space in order to tackle on fundraising initiatives and increase a social media presence among the Ithaca College student body. In only four weeks, The More Than Me Foundation’s Ithaca College interns have raised $4,540.
For the fall 2012, Victoria has created the “Snail Mail For Change” campaign, which will be a pen pal letter exchange between children in Ithaca elementary schools and the girls who attend The More Than Me Foundation’s sponsored school in Liberia. Victoria hopes the campaign will bring to light some of the drastic differences between living conditions in the U.S. and Liberia – and show American and Liberian children what life is like in other places in the world. The pen pal exchange will also help both Liberian and American children practices their reading and writing skills, as well as aid them in expressing and articulating questions on foreign culture.
Victoria said, “The More Than Me Foundation is not like other nonprofit organizations. It does not just offer an education for those who can’t afford it. Most people don’t know this, but in Africa, public school systems are almost nonexistent. Teachers don’t show up. The More Than Me Foundation doesn’t just provide a school with teachers and books; the nonprofit gives children a chance at a future. The foundation provides home visits to make sure they have safe living conditions, and makes sure they are doing their homework. Most of these girls’ mothers are prostitutes. Without school, unfortunately, that’s usually what their futures will become too. It’s a horrible vicious cycle, and we’re doing everything we can to break it.”
For more information on how to join the More Than Me Foundation’s Ithaca College interns, contact Grace Schroeder at firstname.lastname@example.org, or for more information about The More Than Me Foundation log on at http://morethanme.org/.
Contributed by Victoria Probert.