Investing In a Community, One Child at a Time

Join Opportunity International to Invest in One Child and learn about others like Comfort who are transforming lives for generations to come.


The name of my school, Ahobrase Academy, means "humility." In 1998, I had the idea to create a small nursery in my home. Day after day, I saw children aimlessly wandering the streets and not in the classroom. In Ghana, like many other places, getting an education is critical for success. So everyday when my husband left for work, I would secretly teach children from within my home. I would go into the community and invite children in, many who were hungry and unclothed. Slowly I began to build a school that not only provides access to education but also offers children a safe place where they could bathe and eat. We became a family.

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My mother and grandmother epitomized the power of unconditional love to shape lives through the generations. I see that same power at work in the organization I represent: Opportunity International. After 40 years of working to empower communities across the developing world, Opportunity International knows the power of moms everywhere! Working with over 5 million people, a large majority of which are women, we have found that moms everywhere are basically the same: they share a common desire to create a better world for their families and communities.

Worldwide, more than 1.5 billion people live in extreme poverty, 70 percent of whom are women. Despite the challenges these women face, they continue to inspire others with their unwavering motivation to provide a brighter future for their children. Research reveals that women are three times more likely to reinvest in their children and community. It’s a simple yet proven principle. Invest in one woman and impact the lives of many.
This Mother’s Day, we celebrate moms around the world. From the US, to the developing world, mothers everywhere overcome challenges to provide for their families. Women like Felicitus Mmboge, a mother of three in Western Kenya who expanded her beauty products business with a loan from Opportunity International. Today, Felicitus continues to grow her business and has the funds to pay school fees for her children and an orphaned niece. One mother transforming life for herself, her family and the less fortunate in her community—that’s the power of one mother.

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I opened the fridge and sitting there right next to the water was a bottle of cranberry juice. I could almost hear it whisper, "Drink me." On any normal day, I wouldn't hesitate to pour a glass of juice, or even grab an ice-cold soda. Then I looked up—why, oh why, did I look up? There was the chocolate I bought during a recent trip to Vosges. It wasn't whispering. It was shouting, begging me to eat it. I had to run. I grabbed the water, closed the fridge, picked up my saltines, and left the kitchen.
In 2012, I took part in the Live Below the Line challenge. The moment I experienced in the kitchen took place on the second day of my five-day quest to live on $1.50 a day. It’s not that I was extremely hungry on day two; it was that I lacked options. I had become so accustomed to eating what I wanted, when I wanted, that my new-found restrictions seemed not only challenging, but painful. The most difficult part was the shopping. When was the last time you went to the grocery store and only spent $1.50? The options are fairly limited. With a lot of thought, teamwork, and creative planning I was able to plan my entire week and avoid eating ramen for every meal.
In reality, I had nothing to complain about. Living Below the Line made me realize that I am fortunate. What for me was a five-day challenge is a daily reality for the more than 1.4 billion people living in extreme poverty. Food access, not choice, is a struggle they face every day.

In the United States, most of us can't comprehend what it means to be without immediate, easy access to food. Within a five-minute drive of my home, there are at least four grocery stores, ten convenience stores, countless restaurants and fast food joints. A mother living below the line doesn't have the ability to fill a refrigerator with food to feed her children. She faces the unimaginable task of providing a home, education, and food for her family for less than $1.50.

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