Photo Essay

  • A teacher at the Mchoka primary school lectures his pupils in his classroom. It is the last school in the Salima district in central Malawi to receive the K.I.N.D desks. The community has been actively working on refurbishing the classrooms for the children.
  • Young students at Mchoka primary school in central Malawi listen attentively to their teacher while sitting on the floor in a group during lessons.
  • Children at the Mchoka primary school run to get to their lessons under the shade of a tree on the school grounds.
  • Workers at the Capital Furniture company, located in the old part of Lilongwe, where a batch of desks are being manufactured for the classrooms.
  • UNICEF and the KIND Fund are working with several local producers around Malawi for the production of the desks, including MG Industries factory in Lilongwe pictured here.
  • Workers at MG Industries factory in Lilongwe busy at work on an order of desks for the classrooms.
  • Workers at MG Industries in Lilongwe load the finished desks into a truck that will deliver them to the school.
  • Workers secure the desks to a truck at the factory in Lilongwe, readying them for delivery to schools in need.
  • MG Industries employees prepare the truck for the journey to the school to deliver the much anticipated desks.
  • UNICEF, through private and public donors, supports the education of girls in Malawi's Mangochi district. As part of its joint UN adolescent girl program, UNICEF is supporting vocational skills training for young women who have dropped out of school.
  • Malawi, Mangochi district, 19 June 2013

Malawi, District de Mangochi, 19 juin 2013

Philippe Brault / Agence VU
  • Children from Msalura Primary School in Salima that received 350 desks in April 2013.
  • Awaiting the arrival of the delivery truck at Mchoka primary school, the last school in the Salima district to receive the desks.
  • A teacher during afternoon lessons at Mchoka primary school, the last school in the Salima district to receive the desks.
  • A young student studying on the floor of the Mchoka primary school.
  • Small children run out of the classroom at Mchoka primary school in Salima when the desks arrive.
  • Children run to greet the delivery truck at Mchoka primary school in Salima as it arrives with the desks.
  • A child greets Lawrence O'€™Donnell at the Jalo School in Kasungu.
  • Students at Mchoka primary school help to unload the new desks in Salima.
  • Pupils at Mchoka primary school in Salima carry their new desks into the classroom.
  • The children help arrange the new desks at the Mchoka primary school. This is the last school in the Salima district to have received desks from the KIND Fund.
  • Children sitting in their desks for the first time at the Mchoka primary school.
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K.I.N.D. fund: Bringing desks to kids

Millions of students in Africa spend their days packed into tiny classrooms, sitting on dirt floors for hours at a time. Giving them the most basic tools – a place to sit, read and write - could help them achieve a better education and a brighter future.

The MSNBC community is working to make that a reality.

MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell teamed up with UNICEF in 2010 in a groundbreaking partnership to create the K.I.N.D Fund – Kids In Need of Desks.

The program has raised more than $5.7 million to date, providing tens of thousands of desks to schoolchildren in Malawi. Girls have an especially hard time gaining a solid education in Malawi where only 7% complete their high school education. Unlike primary school, the cost of education isn’t free. Through a new K.I.N.D. initiative, the public can provide scholarships to these young women.

For $32.50, you can give the gift of a seat to one student. For $65, you can purchase an entire desk that will seat two or three students. A donation of $177 will cover one year of a girl’s education, which includes tuition, room and board, text books, transportation, a school uniform and other learning supplies.

No donation is too small. If you want to contribute to the K.I.N.D Fund, please visit LastWordDesks.msnbc.com or call 1-800-4-UNICEF.

For more, check out the short film by Philippe Brault about the children of Malawi and the K.I.N.D Fund (Kids In Need of Desks).