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What We Do

South Sudan Youth Education Program (SSYEP) is a non-profit organization incorporated in Oregon, United States of America. Our primary objective is to provide scholarships to South Sudanese refugees living in Kenya and other East African countries such as Uganda, Ethiopia and Sudan. SSYEP is organized exclusively for charitable, scientific, religious and educational purposes. These purposes are legally covered within the meaning of Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service Code of 1986, as amended (the “Code”), including, without limitation, the grant of scholarships to South Sudanese refugees living in Kenya and the surrounding countries. South Sudan is a new country in East Africa, becoming independent on July 9, 2011. After South Sudan's communities underwent more than 40 years of intermittent violent conflicts, the people continue to experience nothing but ethnic violence, illiteracy and poverty. South Sudan's school system had been destroyed.

Many years of civil conflicts in the Sudan (before 2011) have not only left ruins of ethnographic destruction, but successive generations still remain illiterate. Illiteracy of so many people in South Sudan, especially the youth, most of whom are still dangerously armed, serves as a formidable threat to the stability of societies of the new country. Many schools and training institutions have been consumed by emptiness, rust or often used as military barracks as students and teachers have either joined the military or left the country for refugee camps in the neighboring countries to seek schooling for their children or themselves. Given the dire situation at home, many South Sudanese, especially families who want peace and education for their children, are currently living in refugee camps in Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt (urban refugees).

South Sudanese refugees in Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Sudan, and Egypt, on the other hand, are confronted with grinding poverty because most, if not all, cannot find work. United Nations Education providers in the refugee camps only provide basic primary education and make secondary education available for a fee. In Kakuma Refugee Camp in Northwestern Kenya, for example, secondary school enrollment in the camp schools cost $30 per student each year. For refugee children whose families depend on distributed food rations, $30 is difficult to come by. That makes students who perform amazingly well on their primary leaving tests drop out of school and possibly head back home where they become part of the ongoing ethnic conflicts. Most of these young people continue to become a lethal threat to the stability of that young country.

SSYEP may not afford to send everyone to school, but supporting a few best students with the potential to succeed is better than doing nothing. SSYEP's funds will be utilized effectively to grant scholarships to refugee students who perform exceptionally well on the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) and Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE), or equivalent. These scholarships will enable them to access secondary and/or college education within Kenya and other neighboring countries where they are encamped. As a former refugee from South Sudan, the founder of SSYEP, James Adiok Mayik, currently teaching secondary school science in the Oregon public schools, is a former beneficiary of Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS), a program created in Kakuma Refugee Camp in the 1990's.

SSYEP's subsidiary purposes include distributing to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations under Section 501(c)(3) of the Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code. Although this will be a later modification, given availability of funds, SSYEP will possibly create projects to support existing schools inside Sudan's Ruweng Administrative Area (RAA) and hopefully Pibor Administrative Area (PAA). Given their landlocked geography, RAA and PAA youths are conspicuous victims of more than 40 years of Sudan's intermittent civil wars. Most of the residents in these areas did not benefit from access to East African Refugee Camps where many young people went to school free of charge under the United Nations Refugee services.

What We Do: About Us
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