EDUCATION without BORDERS.fr is a French non-profit association created in 2012 in Aix-en-Provence, France.
Its objective is to create an opportunity for interaction between high school students of different continents and backgrounds and build an effective partnership (student exchange, financial support, provision of educational material) and the establishment of internet links.
I am a French and Belgian citizen, and have been in the international schooling system for all of my life. I have been fortunate to travel to many foreign countries. I have been going to the Casamance region in Senegal for many years with my family. I’ve helped out in the orphanage of Oussouye, the capital of the department, since I was 10 years old.
For my Creativity, Action, Service project (CAS) at my high school, IBS in Aix en Provence, France, I decided to design and implement a project which would help people of my age in Casamance. I contacted the high school in Cabrousse, le Collège d’Enseignement Moyen (CEM), and went there during the spring break of 2012 with a fellow student. We travelled with 300 kg of school manuals donated by IBS and books and sports equipment for which we had raised CAS money. We participated in the school’s activities for a week. We saw how the students live; we followed all their classes.
I will never forget the conditions students and teachers face and how creative and motivated they are.
We worked with the students after school and identified many ways in which together we can improve their situation.We decided to establish an IBS-CEM partnership.
Why create EducationWithoutBorders.FR?
This initiative led me to found a non-profit organization, EDUCATION without BORDERS.fr
EDUCATION without BORDERS.fr aims to raise funds to improve school facilities and enhance educational opportunities in Cabrousse and other places in developing countries. It hopes to create possibilities for interaction between students of different parts of the world. We want to take advantage of our digital culture to strengthen ties, promote exchanges of information and documentation and intercultural dialogue. New technologies considerably improve our chances to impact our fellow students’ lives in remote, geographically isolated regions like Casamance.
Together we can help students in developing countries to change their lives and, by doing so, broaden our own horizons.
Area of Action
Our projects are located in Cabrousse, Senegal
The Republic of Senegal is a former French colony. The country became independent in 1960. Its first president was Léopold Sedar Senghor, a world famous poet and writer. The capital is Dakar. Senegal is one of the few stable democracies in West Africa. In 2012 the country elected a new president, Macky Sal. The previous president, Abdoulaye Wade, had been in power for twelve years. Power was transferred peacefully after a fair election.
The country has almost no natural resources, which is why it is so poor. 54% of its population of 13 million inhabitants live below poverty line. Unemployment is estimated at 48%.
1€ = 655 CFA (the common currency of West Africa)
Cabrousse and the College d’Enseignement Moyen (CEM)
Cabrousse is a coastal village in the Casamance region of the south of Senegal. It is very difficult to access from France and is geographically isolated. There are about 5000 inhabitants.
The school is the only high school in the area. There are about 1,200 students, even though the school has only 9 classrooms and 37 teachers. Students come from all villages that surround Cabrousse. It’s not uncommon for a student to walk 20 km to get to school. No public or private transport is available. The school has 3 toilets and no cafeteria. Most classrooms have no flooring; there are many holes in the roofs.
Since many children are denied the chance to go to school the students make lots of efforts to get to school, attend class and learn as much as they can in a day. Nothing comes easy. There are almost no books or manuals available to students; they borrow them in turn to do their homework.