Our History

Reason2Hope History

Why The Gambia…

After visiting The Gambia in West Africa and in particular the remote village of Burong, Mary Van Kampen decided to learn more about the poor, remote village and what could be done to help.  In 2011 Burong Lower Basic School served about 65 enrolled students, predominately boys.  The Head Master explained that there were many more children living in Burong and the 4 surrounding villages who were unable to attend school, and enrollment was declining.  There was concern the school would be closed.  Why was that?  Because education is not free in The Gambia.  Parents must pay schools fees, buy books and supplies, school uniforms and provide daily lunch money.  Almost all of the people in this lower river region are sustenance farmers and live on less than $2 per day.

Reason2Hope was founded by Mary Van Kampen in 2012 to help the children of Burong receive an education.  She spends several weeks each year in The Gambia meeting with school staff, children, families, village elders and representatives from The Gambian Ministry of Education.  The first R2H initiative was to provide school uniforms to every enrolled student.  Enrollment doubled!  Still, the cost of a school lunch put education out of reach for many.  When R2H began providing school supplies and rice for lunches… enrollment doubled again!  Today about 300 students attend Burong Lower Basic School with an almost equal number of boys and girls.  Classes now include Early Childhood Development through grade 6.

To help the school become self-sustaining, R2H supported a large, fenced vegetable garden and orchard which are now thriving on donated land.  The produce becomes part of the student’s daily lunches, while some items are sold to help pay for school supplies.

Caring Reason2Hope Partners provide the funds that are changing lives daily in the tiny country of The Gambia.  We welcome you to join us on this amazing journey.

Reason2Hope is a registered 501 (c)(3) charitable organization.  All donations are tax deductible.

Education is hope. Education is power. Education changes lives.

From the Blog

  • The Shoe Story
    I think my first memory involving Africa is hearing my mom tell me to clean my plate because there were starving children in Africa. I...
    Read more

Our Projects

One day at a time, one child at a time, one project at a time. With your help, Reason2Hope is making progress...
Read more

Connect With Us