Phoenix, Arizona, February 5, 2010 -- The Arizona-based International Foundation for Education and Self-Help (IFESH) received the 2009 World Association of Non-Governmental Organizations (WANGO) Education Award on Friday, February 5th. The WANGO Awards program honors non-governmental organizations throughout the world that demonstrate extraordinary effort, innovation, leadership, and excellence in providing service to humanity. WANGO is one of the world's largest international associations for non-governmental organizations (NGOs). With 70,000 members in over 120 countries, WANGO unites NGOs worldwide in the cause of advancing peace and global well being.
In making the decision to present IFESH the award, the Awards Committee was particularly impressed with the diverse and effective educational initiatives utilized to significantly reduce poverty and implement reforms in sub-Saharan Africa, as well as building a bridge between Americans and Africans. The Awards Committee agreed that IFESH programs, such as "Teachers for Africa" and "Schools for Africa", have significantly improved the quality of education for millions of African children.
Since 1992, more than 1,000 volunteer educators have served in 15 African countries through IFESH Education programs. IFESH has also built or refurbished more than 250 schools and has shipped more than $40 million worth of education materials in support of its education programs on the continent.
Taj Hamad, Secretary General of WANGO, presented the award to Dr. Julie H. Sullivan, IFESH President and CEO.
"This award truly honors the vision and dedication of my father's work in Africa," said Sullivan, upon accepting the award. "He received many honors and awards over his lifetime, but he would have been especially proud of his organization - IFESH - receiving this particular award," she continued. "I'm proud too - proud of the hard work undertaken by our staff, our volunteers and our board that has made it possible for us to be considered for this award. To them all, I offer my heartfelt thanks."