With Join My Village It's Easy to Support African Schoolchildren

Helping children in Africa is now as easy as going to a website and clicking thanks to the 'click-to-commit social change initiative' Join My Village, which has already raised more than $700,000.


The Initiative

Join My Village was created by the General Mills Foundation and the humanitarian organization CARE. Visitors to the Join My Village site are able to help raise money without actually having to donate anything themselves. For instance, users might be asked to click on a video to watch and then the companies supporting the initiative, General Mills and Merck, will donate $1 for each click. In addition, the companies are matching personal donations dollar-for-dollar.

As of the end of July, more than $700,000 had been raised. It's expected that, by the end of 2011, about $900,000 will have been raised just by users clicking.

Where the Money's Going

The money raised through Join My Village benefits girls and women in Malawi. Join My Village notes that, when it comes to education, there are 80 students for each teacher and that, of all upper secondary school teachers, only 20% are women. Additionally, only 65% percent of the women in Malawi are literate.

The money aids these women and girls in several ways, including paying for new reference materials and funding scholarships for girls. Funds also help by building housing for female teachers and supporting the launch of women-owned businesses.

Join My Village explains that its mission 'is to inspire girls to create a better future for themselves, their families, communities and eventually the world by giving them an opportunity to succeed.'

How You Can Help

The good news is that even the poorest of students can help Join My Village, since the site needs your clicks and not your dollars. By visiting Join My Village's website, you can sign up and then receive e-mail notifications when there is a new chance for you to click and help. For example, in July the task was to click on a video interview of one of the organization's scholarship recipients to help raise money.

Another inexpensive way you can make a difference is by telling your friends and family about Join My Village. There is strength in numbers and the more people click on the site, the more dollars will be raised.

If you do have some extra money to spare, you can also make monetary donations to Join My Village through its website. The organization notes that a little can go a long way. For instance, pencils for 100 students can be purchased for $25 and notebooks for 100 students can be bought for $35.

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