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The Washington Post recently sat down with Cassandra Lee, Founder of HOPE agent ‘Justice Rising’ to speak about the organization’s work overseas, how its grown, and some of the challenges it faces. You can find an excerpt below along with a link to the full article:
Cassandra Lee started Justice Rising, a nonprofit organization dedicated to building schools and providing quality education in areas affected by war, with her husband Edison Lee in 2015. The couple started with one school in the the Democratic Republic of Congo, but the organization has grown in size and scope since then: Today, Justice Rising works with communities to run seven schools in the country, employing more than 60 teachers and administrators. They’ve also expanded to Iraq and Syria, countries that have been affected by the battle against the Islamic State.
I saw you recently took a trip to Syria and met with students and educators. How would you describe the state of education in the places you visited?
We mainly visited schools in Aleppo and outside of Damascus. We met many incredible teachers, faculty and parents working hard to see that children receive an education. Many young people are still getting the opportunity to study, but not without risk and overwhelming difficulties. Post-conflict, even basic things like paying for school, school books [and] supplies can be challenging for many families who have lost everything. We saw schools that were devastated by bombs and canvassed by bullet holes. The students have either fled their homes or have crowded into remaining schools. It was validating to hear a headmaster in Aleppo tell us, “To end terrorism, we must educate our children.” Our response to the crisis in Syria is to support existing schools and to partner with local educators to see that all students have access to a quality education and that teachers feel supported in their work.
Justice Rising has achieved complete gender parity in the classrooms you work in. What are some overlapping challenges you had to overcome to make . . .Click HERE
Click HERE to learn more about Justice Rising and how you can support their work.