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Stefanie Miska with her art club students.
Stefanie Miska with her art club students.

August 13, 2009

Camosun student Stefanie Miska has a great belief that education is power.

At 21, the second-year Arts and Science student is exploring her own personal scholarly interests while helping others find theirs, half way around the world.

Stefanie is taking University Transfer studies, taking breaks in between to travel Ghana in West Africa. There she volunteers at a modest school called Heavenly Home Academy, tutoring small children from nursery school age up to junior secondary level and helping raise funds for the cause.

“I got involved with this project through Lattitude Global,” explains Miska. “They set me up with Heavenly Home and helped me prepare for my first trip there. Since returning, I have personally committed to the project and have continued my relationship with the academy on my own.”

Building a new school

Heavenly Home Academy is owned and managed by Love Kwofi, affectionately known as “Aunty Love.” Currently, Love and the children make do with makeshift wooden structures for classrooms. Recently however, Love has managed to obtain eight plots of land and building permits to build a new two-story facility on a cement foundation. Now they need assistance to construct the school.

Stefanie Miska tutors African students.
Stefanie Miska tutors African students.

“This will be a huge improvement,” adds Miska. “With new facilities the children will have access to a more secure and safe learning environment, washroom facilities, water on site and a better education. Raising funds for the school is challenging. People are eager to help out but there are just so many charities and small organizations contributing greatly to important causes around the world.”

For her outstanding course work at Camosun and her extraordinary humanitarian efforts in Africa, Stefanie has received the Leadership in African Awareness Award created by the College’s African Awareness Committee through the Camosun Foundation. The $500 award is given out each year to recognize the volunteer work of a student who has demonstrated leadership and a strong commitment to raising awareness about the achievements and issues in Africa.

“I am very excited at receiving this award,” says Miska. “It inspires me to continue working hard to enrich the education of those less fortunate than myself. By donating funds for awards like this, donors are directly aiding in the progress of African awareness. This will aid me in my goals - the money I've received is going directly to the construction of the school.”

Education is power

“My strongest belief is that education is power,” she adds. “I have had the privilege of a fantastic education here in Canada and I know that it is essential to encourage the same level of schooling around the world. The only way we can help countries like Ghana become completely sustainable is by helping their youth and giving them the great opportunities they deserve.”

After returning from Ghana next year, Stefanie plans to finish her degree in International Relations or Development. “Ideally I would love to work in raising awareness about issues overseas and organizing fundraising events.”

Find out more

The Leadership in African Awareness Award is just one of hundreds of awards and bursaries provided to Camosun students through the Camosun College Foundation. To learn more about the award or help support the outstanding efforts of Camosun students, please contact the Foundation today: 250-370-4234.

Last updated: September 23, 2015 5:12 pm

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