Let's Send These Kids to School
I​​We, in the Western World Take an Education for Granted

Public education and financial assistance are unheard of in many countries.  Without a proper education, many of the world's young people are confined to a life of poverty and menial labor.

In less than four years, "Let's Send These Kids to School" has funded the education of eleven young Ugandan orphans and refugees.  What started out as one young man's random plea for help has turned into a 501(C)3 non-profit organization seeking growth in order to help more children and young adults live fruitful and productive lives.
In the Spring of 2015 I was randomly contacted by a young African man,  John, on Facebook Messenger.  What started out as casual and brief correspondence became a compelling and tragic revelation of John's violently upended life, forever altered by civil conflict in his South Sudanese village.   His home and village had been burnt to the ground.  His father, forcibly inducted into the fight, was eventually killed.  Camping along the Nile for over two weeks, he and his mother waited for news of his father.  They knew in their hearts he would never return yet they still kept hope.  Eventually accepting the reality of his death, they were escorted down the river by a United Nations team to Arua, Uganda where they settled into a refugee camp.  

Working as a houseboy for pennies a day, his only desire was to return to school.​​

I found it mpossible to ignore his pleas. So I contacted a friend, Gayle Kliever, who taught school in Tanzania for five years and at present runs the GLK Student Fund ( http://www.glkstudentfund.com ) ​ which finances the educations of young Tanzanians.  She referred me to a Ugandan priest,  Father Godwin Ogam,  whom she had met while at language school in Africa.  He was able to travel to John's refugee camp in Arua  and confirm his identity and need.  In less than 48 hours we raised over $1000 on Facebook, insuring a term of education for John and also providing seed money for students that were yet to come.

Rapidly adding students, one at a time, it became obvious I had found a new life mission.  

It also became imperative to legitimize the charity.  
In June of 2016, "Let's Send These Kids to School"
became a NYS non-profit corporation, and as of October 18, 2016, an IRS recognized 501(C)3 .

In July of 2016 I traveled to Kampala, Uganda. There I stayed at the Padre Pio Capuchin Franciscan Monastery at the invitation of Father Godwin Ogam.  From there we toured the grounds of two Roman Catholic sponsored Franciscan schools where I witnessed first-hand the challenges that Ugandan students face.  All funding received from the church in Rome is used to improve the infrustructure of the schools, which in many cases is deplorable.   There is no money left to address the issue of individual tuitions.  This is where we come in.

Meeting the students,  experiencing the vibrancy and hopefulness of the Ugandan people and culture, left me with a strong desire to grow this mission into a long-lasting and effective charity.  Today we are actively helping 11 young adults change their lives.  With a little bit of effort and a lot of generosity who knows where this mission will lead, and who knows the countless lives we can change?

Richard Nesbit  founder and president "Let's Send These Kids to School"

Our first student, John Deng Akuei

​John with classmates in South Sudan before the uprising.  Many of these students were killed in the conflict.


Father Godwin Ogam leaving the children's mass at the Padre Pio Monastery one early August morning as the children hurry off to school.

Our sixth student, Irene Mwesigwa and her mother Robina

Father Godwin Ogam on the right as he and two brothers survey the construction progress at one of the Saint Francis sponsored schools.  Money received from the Catholic Church in Rome is used strictly for infrastructure issues.  Tuitions for needy students come from private donations.  This is where we come in.

An authentic African caftan given to me as a token of gratitude from four of the students.  l. to r. Faith Ryaka, Francis Kumakech, Sharon Modo, Me, and John Deng Akuei

Richard Nesbit may be contacted at  

[email protected]

Shoes left outside the church at the Padre Pio Capuchin Franciscan Monastery as the children attend early morning mass.