"EDUCATION IS THE
MOST POWERFUL WEAPON
WHICH YOU CAN USE TO
CHANGE THE WORLD"
- NELSON MANDELA
THE MORNINGSTAR MISSION
In 1996, South Africa inspired the world by establishing a thriving democracy on top of the ruins of racial oppression and bigotry. Central to their achievement was a progressive constitution that conferred the right of a good education to all; the founders recognized that education, above almost all else, was the key to poverty alleviation and equality. The Morningstar Foundation was built on this very same idea--that education can help children escape the vicious cycle of poverty by reaching out to those youths that are most vulnerable. Through education, there can be a “level playing field” for all.
Founded in 2009, the organization initially started out as "Operation Level Playing Field," a small charitable project fundraising for Boys and Girls Club of America and FUNDaFIELD, two organizations that worked towards Op.LPF’s ideals of helping all young people reach their full potential. Derek, Kevin, and Michael Xiao spent hours drawing sketches of popular sports stars and selling their artwork door-to-door in their neighborhood to raise money for their cause. The first year, they managed to raise almost $300 by selling 37 individual sketches.
As the project grew, however, Operation Level Playing Field changed its name to The Morningstar Foundation and moved away from door-to-door sales and explored other fundraising methods, such as farmers markets, barbecues, and even some online sales. Lots of volunteers and active participation from the community made these events big successes. Nurtured by the overwhelming support The Morningstar Foundation received, the small project slowly developed into something bigger; in 2012, it was officially recognized as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Despite all its growth, however, The Morningstar Foundation remains true to its roots. The organization is still dedicated to supporting economically disadvantaged children through education, and works for an even playing field for all.
One project that The Morningstar Foundation is especially proud of is its support of the Indigenous Education Foundation of Tanzania (IEFT) for its work with the underprivileged children in the destitute, rural area of Monduli, Tanzania. IEFT built Orkeeswa School, a secondary school that targets “bright, motivated, and economically disadvantaged youth who would not otherwise have access to Secondary Education.” Through the school, the children are able to graduate with a high school diploma (a privilege which the majority of Tanzanian students do not enjoy due to social and economic reasons) and the knowledge and skills to become future leaders. Visit IEFT's website for more information.
So help out today! Support The Morningstar Foundation by volunteering, donating, or even spreading the word. Together, we create a brighter tomorrow for all.
Tanzania has made major strides in its education system, officially abolishing school fees as of December, 2015. But the quality of secondary education in the country is still poor, and many potential students are unable to go to school because of responsibilities at home, gender expectations, or the lack of schools in the area. Schools like the Orkeeswa Secondary School help high achieving children of lower socioeconomic backgrounds achieve their dreams of obtaining high quality education in Tanzania.