By Paul Jacobson -- We were privileged to provide support for our client the Dikembe Mutombo Foundation’s project to build a modern pre-K through 6th grade school in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Last week the new school was officially dedicated and opened by NBA Hall of Famer and Global Ambassador Dikembe Mutombo and a host of local dignitaries.
Mutombo’s humanitarian work inspired Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter Charlie Marie Lyons to dedicate her latest single “Change” and its streaming revenue to support the school, which is located in a rural area outside the Mbuji-Mayi district.
She also released a music video set to "Change" that showcases Mutombo’s philanthropic efforts in his native land.
The new school is serving 440 girls and boys in pre-K through 6th grade classes, with an emphasis on science, technology, mathematics and the arts. In the future, the foundation hopes to expand the school to higher grades.
Named after Dikembe’s late father, a teacher and school principal, the Samuel Mutombo Institute of Science & Entrepreneurship serves a region where 240,000 children have no access to modern education. The DRC spends 1.5 percent of its gross domestic product on education, 166th in the world. By comparison, the United States spends 5 percent. France spends 5.5 percent.
Those familiar with international humanitarian work know that the DRC is a particularly difficult place to work, which makes this accomplishment all the more impressive.
The Mutombo Foundation’s previous work in the DRC include supporting a three-day polio vaccination drive that inoculated 8.2 million children and construction of a new 170-bed hospital, the first new hospital of its kind built in the DRC in 45 years.
To donate, go to the Dikembe Mutombo Foundation web site at dmf.org.
See the “Change” music video on YouTube.
“Change” is available on Apple Music, Spotify, iHeart Radio or wherever you stream music.
For more on the artist, visit charliemarielyons.com.
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