Disclaimer: Content on the YP4 blog does not necessarily reflect the views of Young People For or People For the American Way Foundation. The views, ideas, statements or claims posted on this site by members of the public cannot in any way be attributed to either Young People For or People For the American Way Foundation.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
16 January 2009
STUDENT ORGANIZATION GOES NONPROFIT TO BENEFIT HEALTH IN AFRICA
East Lansing - To suggest that college students armed with bananas could create anything wholesome and family-friendly may raise a few eyebrows.
But to suggest that college students and bananas are the backbone of a dynamic, progressive organization that has raised more than $150,000 to date and inspired countless people to improve basic health care in Africa? That may raise more eyebrows.
Eight years ago, Alex Hill was going door-to-door to raise funds for a health center in Uganda. Today, along with an army of colleagues sporting banana-yellow shirts, his organization, SCOUT BANANA, has become an official nonprofit that supports 10 health care projects in 10 countries within Africa.
With its new status, SCOUT BANANA has a new education program in the works that will create curriculum that increases knowledge and awareness about the African continent. The program includes an interactive education website, curriculum and resources for elementary and high school classrooms, and an internship program for university students to participate in on-the-ground health care projects.
Current programs of SCOUT BANANA are thriving and growing, including the new academic journal, Articulate: Undergraduate Scholarship Applied to International Development. SCOUT BANANA continues to serve as a hub that brings together communities, academics, activists, community leaders and young people to ensure that global health is everyone’s responsibility and every individual’s human right.
SCOUT BANANA started in 2001 as a project that delivered an ambulance to the St. Ambrose Health Center in Uganda by raising over $67,000 through the support of hundreds of families and over 60 community organizations. SCOUT BANANA, which stands for Serving Citizens of Uganda Today Because Africa Needs A New Ambulance, became the acronym of Hill’s Boy Scout project.
SCOUT BANANA will spend its next phase building a youth movement of individuals who will are compassionate, competent, and collaborative agents of change. "It's not just about donations anymore," states Monica Mukerjee, a staff member of the organization. "It's about research, collaboration, and bringing Africa to the forefront. By inspiring others to be dedicated to Africa, SCOUT BANANA is fueling long-term change and growth in health care and development."
The organization invites all supporters, interested public, and close friends to their Nonprofit Launch Party on 21 February 2009 at the Gone Wired Cafe (6pm) for music, food, fun, and to celebrate the launch of the nonprofit!