St Andrew’s College has entered a unique long-term relationship with charity So They Can and its founder, Cassandra Treadwell, which will benefit disadvantaged students, teachers and families in Africa for years to come.
After working informally with the charity since the start of 2021, the College’s Board has signed off on a Memorandum of Understanding which will see three per cent of all funds raised at St Andrew’s being directed towards So They Can in support of St Andrew’s new partner school, Mwikantsi School in Tanzania, and possibly others in the region. “What Cassandra and her team have created over the last 10 years has made a difference to the lives of so many. We are very proud to become part of the So They Can community,” says Rector Christine Leighton.
St Andrew’s College has already raised considerable funds for Mwikantsi School, which have gone towards building a toilet block, providing resources, and building a meeting room for teachers. Developing a sustained personal relationship between the two schools is another focus of the partnership, with regular communication and activities planned. Much of this is being led by the student Community Service Leaders at St Andrew’s, who will also be working with children in the Preparatory School to ensure every member of the College community is invested in the partnership.
The mission of So They Can is to provide quality education for children living in poverty-stricken communities in Kenya and Tanzania. This is achieved through programmes focused on improved learning conditions, teacher training and development, child well-being, women’s empowerment, and community engagement and health. A number of high-profile ambassadors already support So They Can including former All Black Conrad Smith, and singer Kimbra.
The charity was founded by Cassandra Treadwell around 11 years ago, who was moved to act after going to Africa and seeing the impacts of poverty first-hand. “I visited people living in tents in a displaced persons’ camp in Kenya and asked what I could do to help. They said don’t send money for food, educate our children, as this is what breaks the cycle of poverty and enables them to make good choices.”
She says she is “overwhelmed” by the new partnership with St Andrew’s College, which will provide ongoing and sustainable support for So They Can. “This programme gives us the confidence to plan three years ahead for what we want to achieve. It will absolutely change lives and many children’s futures. I’m excited and so grateful.”
If you wish to make a donation to So They Can, you can do so via the below link.