Malaika is a non-profit, grassroots organization that will celebrate 10 years of empowering Congolese girls and their communities through education and health initiatives at Malaika10, a fundraising cocktail reception on May 17th.

The event, which will take place at Espace in New York City, will honor entrepreneur and humanitarian Barry Segal and philanthropist Tina Buchan. Hosted by TV personality Tai Beauchamp, the evening will feature remarks by Khaliah Ali, a fashion show featuring the beauty of African designers, and music by Malaika’s Goodwill Ambassador, the actress, Grammy Award winner, and multi-platinum selling recording artist, EVE, Congolese musician and MTV Africa’s “Best Francophone Artist”, Fally Ipupa, African dance group, Batoto Yetu, and international DJ for Ministry of Sound, DJ Martin 2 Smoove.

Dedicated Congolese staff, including the Malaika School’s Headmaster, Sylvain Koj, logistics coordinator, Sebastian Kikunguru, and youth Coach, Adrienne Kikunguru will share the impact Malaika is having on the ground, and three 6th grade students will deliver a message of hope.

Operating in the village of Kalebuka, in the Southeastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Malaika was founded in 2007 by Noella Coursaris Musunka, an international model and humanitarian, and a team of dedicated probono experts from the public and private sector. Proceeds from the night will support the completion of the Malaika School and Student Health Center, which is being built in memory of Miriam, the 1st grade student who passed away due to the lack of comprehensive health care in the village.

“Malaika10 is an intimate event that will bring together our DRC and international teams, donors and supporters in celebration of a decade of empowerment via education that would not be possible without their commitment. It gives me great pleasure to share the execution of our vision and its resulting impact on the lives of our students and their surrounding communities. These past 10 years have been dedicated to building a world-class campus, implementing a holistic curriculum, and developing the right partnerships as a solution to major socio-economic challenges in the region. Together and with great pride, we have built an exemplary and solid foundation and we commit ourselves to many more years of positive results.” – Noella Coursaris Musunka, Founder of Malaika

Barry Segal is a successful New Jersey business entrepreneur who now focuses primarily on philanthropic projects. He has two charitable organizations: Focus for Health Foundation and Segal Family Foundation. Both share the mandate to improve the lives of underprivileged individuals and communities, with an emphasis on vulnerable children and implementing sustainable change. Barry applies considerable business acumen to all of his philanthropic endeavors and is tenacious in his desire to increase awareness of the unique plights of the African continent. He has been a supporter of Malaika since the founding of the School.

Tina Buchan is a Toronto-based philanthropist. She considers herself a “seed funder” and seeks to kick start grassroots projects in the healthcare and education sectors both in Canada and abroad. Tina and her family have funded numerous charitable initiatives in the DRC over the years and are longtime supporters of the Malaika School. Recently, a generous donation from the Buchan International Fund allowed for the construction of three new classrooms on the Malaika campus.

In partnership with Elle Magazine and sponsored by Remy Martin, Pernod Ricard, Stolichnaya, Wolffer Estate Vinyard, Indaba Wines, VOSS Water, Kellari Seafood Taverna, Eat OffBeat, Institute of Culinary Education, Theo Chocolate, Brussels Airlines, Clarins Group, BLK/OPL, Global Citizen Foundation, Curlisto, ELBI, and studioMDA. Event Chairs include Thandie Newton, Ronke Ademiluyi, Armand Arton, Bethany Asplundh, Isolde Brielmaier, Lucie Brigham, MacDella Cooper, Christo Curlisto, Christophe de Pous, Abigail Disney, Markus Dochantschi, Amir & Tas Dossal, Luc Gerard, Kara Gerson, Claude Grunitzky, Marie-France Idikayi, Dominic Kalms, Sven Kaufmann, Vanessa Kingori, Judy Koloko, Kahindo Mateene, Steven Merdinger & Lauri Fliegel, Beth Morris, Karina Nagin, Jean Palamar, Purva Panday Cullman, Caitlin Rackish, Peter Rajsingh, Sanjay Rawal, Jacalyn & Brad Rose, Pamela Rucker, Nicole Sexton, JD Stier and Nicka Thomas.

Malaika was founded in 2007 by Noella Coursaris Musunka, an international model and humanitarian, and a team of dedicated volunteers from the public and private sector. 91% of every dollar donated to Malaika goes directly to our programs. The remaining 9% covers essential administrative costs that are necessary to keeping our programs running. Malaika relies upon the dedication and hard work of 35 Congolese staff members working on the ground in the DRC, and around-the-clock support from a team of 30 volunteers working in the US, Europe, Africa, and beyond.

The Malaika School is a free, accredited school that provides a comprehensive and high quality education to 252 girls, from Kindergarten to 6th grade. In September 2017, the secondary school will be inaugurated. The curriculum is structured around daily classes in French and English, on subjects including math, science, information technology, health and civic education. The goal is to build the leadership capacity of each student so that she is empowered to give back to her community and has a positive, long-term impact on the future of the DRC.

In 2013, Malaika partnered with FIFA to build the Kalebuka Football for Hope Center, a community center that offers education, health, entrepreneurship and sports programs to approximately 7,000 youth and adults in the village. Offerings include programs on health education and outreach sessions, such as our Village Health Worker trainings, Mothers First family planning program, and Drop Malaria program, which focuses on decreasing malaria through prevention, protection and the distribution of 9,000 treated bednets. The Center also offers literacy, sewing, math and computer classes, and allowing students to access the Internet. In 2016, the Center launched the Sustainable Pathways project, our premier vocational training program to teach out-of-school youth about conservation farming, entrepreneurship and enterprise development.

Malaika has built seven wells that supply over 14,000 people with clean drinking water, directly reducing the number of water-related illnesses in the community, such as cholera and diarrhea.

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