D2N believes that education is the key to the future and supports programs that advance this belief.
American Promise Schools
American Promise Schools (APS) is a Detroit non-profit management group that believes every child should be given a chance for a first-rate education and a shot at the American Dream and provides opportunities for children to accomplish this. Their schools include Jalen Rose Leadership Academy, Consortium College Preparatory Academy and Voyageur Academy. These schools offer curriculums geared at getting students into college, offer multiple college scholarships and have programs to help keep these kids in college.
D2N’s school reconstruction initiative consists of rebuilding 11 schools in the villages of Dipsung, Sungdel and Rakha which were completely destroyed by the 2015 earthquake. Given the facts that the Nepalese government is overwhelmed by the destruction caused by the earthquake and these villages are remote and marginalized, it is highly unlikely that these schools would or could be rebuilt by the government and local communities without outside help.
Since the earthquake D2N has enabled 623 students from seven schools to return to new, safe classrooms. This past fall construction started on the final four schools slated for reconstruction. We are in the process of rebuilding 15 classrooms which will house 515 students. These schools have a planned completion date of June 2018.
While under reconstruction students study in “temporary learning centers” and will continue to do so until permanent structures are built. All schools will be designed to be “earthquake safe” to hopefully prevent any destruction from future earthquakes. D2N will be funding this entire project.
Currently D2N has 131 students (128 girls and 3 boys) on scholarship in Bakachol, Baksila, Dipsung and Rakha. Education is free in Nepal, but many children cannot afford school supplies, uniforms, backpacks or even adequate shoes and a winter coat. The scholarship fund preferentially selects women of lower castes. As long as the kids are attending school and progressing, their scholarship will be renewed annually.
Many marginalized families send their daughters to work as servants to supplement the family income. D2N hopes these scholarships are not just an incentive for the girls to stay in school, but more importantly, an incentive for the parents to keep their daughters in school.
American Promise Schools provides scholarships to college-bound graduates. As part of the Central Michigan University Partnership Match Program APS students are provided with full tuition, room, board and books for a year. APS will also fill the annual financial gap for their students accepted to Michigan State University.
D2N completed the first school library in the village of Dipsung in the spring of 2015. The books in the library provide reading material for all levels of readers. We also provided books to already established libraries in the villages of Bakachol and Ainselukharka. None of these libraries had books for beginning readers.
Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program
DAPCEP provides STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) to approximately 4,000 underserved students in the Detroit area each year. Grades K-3 attend either weekend or summer courses at Southfield High School. Grades 4-12 attend courses at one of eight partnering universities in the area. Half the funds raised at Over The Edge 2015 were donated to DAPCEP.
Dipru School Land
D2N's inaugural project was the purchase of land in Dipru for a new school. Previously, a small temporary three-room structure housed 90 children in grades 1-5. After purchasing the land at the new site, the new school (built by the dZi Foundation) provided space for a preschool and grades 1-8. The Yuva Jyoti Primary School was destroyed by the earthquake in 2015 but reconstructed in 2016 as part of D2N’s earthquake relief efforts.