Dave Cuddy with Lokusero Primary School students in Kenya.

Campbell River concert to benefit African charity

An incredible lineup of local musicians will be at Shot in the Dark Café on Saturday

An incredible lineup of local musicians will be at Shot in the Dark Café on Saturday to raise funds for an African education charity.

Shane Philip (Winner of Vancouver Island Music Award’s Best Live Act), Helen Austin and Daisy (Winner of International Songwriting competition and Juno Finalist), Kyell Erickson and Judy and Bruce will all be performing to raise funds for Education is Power. The night starts at 7 p.m. and continues with an Open Mic and DJing by Marcel Marechal (manager of Shot In The Dark).

Education is Power (EIP) is a small scale African charity that raises tuition fees for disadvantaged Africans studying at African secondary and post-secondary schools whose motto is “Empower one who can empower others.” Entrance is by donation and all ages are welcome.

EIP is run by David Cuddy, an outdoor instructor at Strathcona Park Lodge since 2005. He founded the organization in 2008 after his experience in the Canada World Youth Program.  He continues to run the organization as a volunteer through a network of volunteers and no administration costs.

Kenyan and Tanzanian students who are selected for funding are volunteers in their community and after receiving funding and attending school, they make visits to primary schools and high schools to inspire and educate others.

Education is Power has a unique and sustainable 25 per cent payback model where funded students are required to pay back 25 per cent of their post-secondary fees back to the organization once they gain suitable employment after graduation.  The end goal of the project is to keep the education in Africa as one of EIP’s core value’s is that “if you want to help Africa then lets help Africans who can help Africa!”

Education is Power has supported 25 students to date and there are many more students on the waiting list in need of funding.  The target for the fundraiser is $1,700, which is the same amount it costs for one year of university tuition in Kenya and it is also the amount that was raised at EIP’s fundraiser in Kenya last February.  This was an astounding support from locals who contributed greatly in comparison to their average salary of $1.50 per day in Kenya.

David Cuddy organized that event with other Kenyans involved in EIP.  He will do a talk with pictures and video at the Oct. 12 fundraiser.

Cuddy is calling out to teachers in the region to take on the project with their students and support an EIP student while also getting to have Skype meetings with the same student they raise money for.

Cuddy is available to do talks with pictures and videos up until Nov. 10 this year or next spring when he returns from his fourth trip to East Africa. Contact him at  davecuddy@educationispower.org” davecuddy@educationispower.org or learn more about the project at  www.educationispower.org.