At pop, we believe every child deserves access to quality education. We create schools, programs and global communities around the common goal of education for all. We accomplish these activities by dedicating significant amounts of time, labor and effort raising money in the U.S. Through youth and professional engagement programs and special events. The funds raised allow us to increase our domestic and international reach and impact.at the conclusion of 2016, we have broken ground on 386 schools across the four countries of laos, ghana, guatemala and nicaragua. Our schools are open to students in each country and the stages of planning and construction are underway in several new communities to aid in expanding our reach in 2017.
$3.2m annual program spend • The first of our core programs is schools builds. We partner with local communities and governments to improve the state of education infrastructure in communities. Our short term goals are to address the need for improved infrastructure with our long term goals being to improve student attendance, progression, and test scores. The beneficiaries of our school building program are primary school students currently attending school in poor quality structures and primary school teachers currently teaching in poor quality structures. Through the end of 2017, we have broken ground on a total of 450 schools across our geographies.
$2.5m annual program spend • Our second core program is teacher support. We support teacher development through in-service and workshop training sessions. Our staff members visit government teachers in our communities twice per month to aid in lesson planning, methodology training and rapport building with students. Teachers attend workshops for group training and network building. We use a methodology of teaching that focuses on the engagement of the student because more engaged students perform at a higher level. The short term goals of our teacher support programs are: to improve lesson planning by assisting teachers in the creation and use lesson plans; to build rapport with students by encouraging teachers to adopt our interactive methodology to better engage students; to support a peer network of teachers through teacher training workshops, and; to provide classrooms with teaching and learning materials. Our long term goal is to increase primary student scores in literacy across all our geographies. The main beneficiaries of our teacher support program are the teachers and students in our schools and communities. Through 2017, we have supported 914 teachers across laos, guatemala and ghana.
$763k annual program spend • Our third core program is our wash program. Wash is an internationally recognized and utilized program that is designed to provide access to and knowledge about water, sanitation, and hygiene (wash). Unicef adopted wash in 2005 as their primary intervention to tackle hygiene needs in the developing world; pop began wash practices in 2010 in laos and have since expanded to guatemala and ghana. In carrying out this program, we build student and teacher sanitation facilities (hand washing stations and bathrooms) in conjunction with classroom builds. In addition, our staff members visit classes twice per month during the school year to teach lessons related to water, sanitation and hygiene. The primary goals of this program are to build and provide access to quality toilets, potable water and hand washing stations in conjunction with pop schools lacking such infrastructure. Additionally, we aim to increase proper hygienic and sanitary behavior in primary students.