The Foundation has been working over the last year and a half, mostly through the generosity of the Rosalind M. Richards Educational Fund to get the Christian A. Richards Elementary School in Clay-Ashland up and running. The City of Clay-Ashland and its environs demographically have a very high young population, as is the case all over Liberia. Pre-K through Kindergarten had about 240 children enrolled last school year not taking into consideration children in First through Sixth Grades.
In our quest to assist the school system in Clay-Ashland, we contacted the Ministry of Education and were given the go ahead to renovate the Christian A. Richards Memorial Center for the purpose of moving the elementary school aged children from overcrowding at the William D. Coleman High School. As agreed by both parties, the Ministry of Education would provide the Administrative Staff and Teachers for the school and the Richards & Coleman Family Foundation would provide oversight and support to the school, designating it as a Public School. With the Elementary School's facilities now completed, due to some unforeseen events the Ministry of Education was not ready to work with us in the interest of the children of Clay-Ashland leaving us with no choice but to designate the Christian A. Richards Elementary School as a Private School.
As a Private School, the parents will have to pay tuition fees for their children to attend the school, an option the parents chose after experiencing three weeks of instructional teaching since the school's reopening in March 2015. Although the parents who attended the PTA meeting opted to pay tuition fees, we know that there will be a number of those who cannot afford it.
The fee as of May 2015 is $500 Liberian Dollars (about $7.00 USD) monthly per household. This is the minimal amount we believe would be needed to manage the school properly, taking into account staff salaries, school lunches and all other administrative costs to run the school.
Providing support for one child would cost $10.00 USD (Ten United States Dollars) per month; $120.00 annually. We are kindly asking you to consider supporting one or more of these children. If you are only able to provide assistance for a few months instead of a full year, that would also be appreciated. Donations can be made through the Richards & Coleman Family Foundation's website or by mail. Your help will bless these children in ways you cannot imagine and you too will be blessed in your giving.
Sincerely in Your Service,
Rhonda Richards von Ballmoos
Deputy Executive Director RCFF