Thursday, March 31, 2011

Building Hope ... the Joys of Education

While in Austin I had the honor to screen a documentary called "Building Hope" about a couple of non-profiters that in their efforts to promote lacking education in the 4 corners of the world were touched by the small community of Mahiga, Kenya.

The couple, the Pipkins (Turk and Christy), based in Austin, run a non profit called The Nobelity Project. Their goal, to share, through film, the lives and education of children around the globe. A friend of mine from both high school and college has been working with the couple for a few months, and actually worked on the documentary, so when I sat down in the theatre I just figured it would be a seemingly self-induced load of "look what we did for these African kids". Not. the. case.

It is beautiful what this couple have created for the students at Mahiga Hope School. And the film pieced together not only the troubles that the students faced but also how hard The Nobelity Project had to work in order to get people to realize that schools aren't easily to come by commodities as they are in the States. Being from Detroit, where to close a few hundred schools only takes a press release and few boards of wood, I never really paid attention to the work involved in actually building a school. I usually drive down a street and I'm blown away by just how many schools lay vacant amongst the neighborhoods...just think, if the students at Mahiga Hope would see that, their hearts would explode.

Check out the trailer...

After the film I had the opportunity to talk with Christy Pipkin (left), who during the entire ordeal of building a school in Kenya, traveling across the ocean, raising her own children, and running a non-profit had her own battles ... but let's stay on task. I wanted so badly to interview her. To ask her if she was met with any adversity from potential sponsors, from naysayers, from folks that would labor her a "Saint w/ hopes of an Oscar", but instead all I could share was complete and utter gratitude. I am so thankful for this project. So thankful for their drive. So happy that it was completely, and I look forward to one day being able to devote myself to something as groundbreaking. We shared tears (hince the red eyes) amongst the viewers and Aderemi (my friend) laughed at our poor little souls...but hey, so what.

Also, if you would like to donate to the Mahiga Hope School or to get more information about a screening near you, please visit the Nobelity Project on Facebook.


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