Teach the Need Expands to Nigeria to Widen Education Access

Educational nonprofit Teach the Need has recently expanded to Nigeria, allowing it to offer free tutoring services to a new demographic. After successfully helping people who would ordinarily struggle to access tutoring in the US and Canada, the organization has turned its attention to North Africa — and has already helped thousands.

Let’s take a look at what Teach to Need has achieved in Nigeria so far, the achievements of the organization as a whole, and how it got to where it is today.

Background to Teach to Need

Teach the Need was first established in 2018 by a group of high school students in Toronto. After volunteering at a local library, they became aware of the struggles young people face when looking for a tutor — not just due to low availability and high costs, but also practical considerations like access to transport. 

Founder Sunny Cui encountered the same problems when running his own tutoring company, realizing that only students from wealthier families could afford his rates. Meanwhile, those with more socioeconomic challenges had limited access to education.

The team created the organization to offer a better alternative: Free but high-quality tutoring services that could be accessed virtually. To maximize accessibility, the nonprofit has IOS and Android apps available for download. This helps to ensure that students from all socioeconomic backgrounds can access the help they need to succeed in education.

Teach the Need primarily offers 1-on-1 tutoring in Mathematics, Science, and English and mental health services for young people, although it offers services to people of all ages. Its mentors are made up of mental health counselors and youth counselors, who focus on in-person services, and volunteers who carry out online services. 

Currently, Teach the Need has bases in the founding team’s home country of Canada — despite being one of the wealthiest countries in the world and having solid educational systems, access to support isn’t universal.

However, the nonprofit is now widening access further by moving away from North America.

Expansion to Nigeria 

Teach the Need selected Nigeria as its target for expansion thanks to the team’s connections to the nation, which made it a natural choice. The team is headed by Chizoba Adegboye, the President. 

Nigeria has developed rapidly over the past few years, but has historically dealt with challenges regarding educational provision. Its social services are also in need of improvement. 

The United Nations recommends that governments allocate around 26% of their budget to education, but Nigeria’s contributions stand below this, meaning many schools are underfunded. Even if educational establishments do get the funding they need, administrations may take part of the money for themselves instead of using it for resources or teachers’ salaries. Furthermore, there are challenges like outdated curriculums and poor infrastructure in academic institutions. 

All of this inspired Teach the Need’s decision to focus on the country, and the team felt they could make a significant difference with their services and local knowledge.

The nonprofit has a physical base, where it offers in-person services. However, as with the US and Canada, Nigerians can also access various online options. This helps the mission to reach as many people as possible. 

Teach the Need’s tutoring and counseling services are available for people of all ages in Nigeria — and while they tend to be on the younger end of the age spectrum, people between the ages of six to 70 have benefitted so far.

Already, Teach the Need has around 6,500 registered students in Nigeria alone. The nonprofit also has four full-time workers and 20 part-time workers, with hopes of expanding further. 

Achievements so far

Teach the Need now  has more than 50,000 registered students across all its locations. Meanwhile, there are more than 2,000 tutors (including both volunteers and employees). Volunteers make up around 80% of the team, and their commitment to educational access has been pivotal in making the project a success.

Teach the Need has an impressive social media presence that it uses to reach a larger audience and attract volunteers, awareness, and funding. It has more than 75,000 followers on Instagram. 

Most of the nonprofit’s quick growth has been possible thanks to generous government grants. The nonprofit recently obtained a $200,000 (CAD) grant from the Government of Canada to expand its operations. It has also received funding from the Nigerian government, as well as various sponsorships for small businesses. These have helped to pay employees to be tutors, upkeep physical locations, and oversee servers — ensuring Teach the Need can offer its services to the highest number of students possible.

One step closer to democratizing education 

Teach the Need’s expansion to Africa is a landmark step in its journey and has already benefited thousands. But with many more children still unable to access the tutoring and mental health services, the nonprofit has no intention of slowing down any time soon.

Shahbaz Ahmed
Author: Shahbaz Ahmed

My name is Shahbaz Ahmed. I am author on Ventsmagazine. For any business query, you can contact me at [email protected]

About Shahbaz Ahmed

My name is Shahbaz Ahmed. I am author on Ventsmagazine. For any business query, you can contact me at [email protected]

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