Worldwide almost 1 billion people lack a basic skill to acquire knowledge: They are illiterate because they have had no primary
education or because the quality of their primary education was too low. In Cameroon today, the biggest problem of poverty,
besides the lack of food, is the lack of access to basic education which is more visible among the lowest income rural populations
as well as those living in the urban slums. Investment in the early education benefits the individual, society and the world at
large and it is among the most effective apparatus known to reduce poverty and inequity.
Wealth and gender disparities take a toll on children and put vulnerable groups at risk for not attending school and being
further disadvantaged in life opportunities. Nearly 250,000 children of primary school age in the south west region of Cameroon
are out of school; either because they dropped out, never enrolled or are expected to enroll late. Living in a rural area doubles
the risk of not attending school and poor children are five times more likely to be out of school than children from rich households.
For poor household can’t afford the basic school needs for their children. Also gender-based discrimination in education is both a
cause and a consequence of deep-rooted disparities in society. Geographical isolation, ethnic background, disability, traditional
attitudes about their status and role; all undermine the ability of girls to exercise their rights to basic education.
Harmful practices such as early marriage and pregnancy, gender-based violence, and discriminatory education laws, policies,
contents and practices still prevent millions of girl’s from enrolling, completing and benefitting from education. These
educational challenges pose a threat to the economic future and viability of Cameroon and deprive children of their right to a
quality education.It is for these reasons that EOCN Miles, a member of the US Navy Mobile Construction Battalion one,
working during the renovation of a community school in Limbe witnessed firsthand the needs of children from poor family
backgrounds in basic education settings in Cameroon. Based on these she opted in collaboration with the Martin Luther King Jr.
Memorial Foundation (LUKMEF) to develop this initiative called “the Bridget Initiative” with one main objective:
"To create an opportunity for resourceful and willing individuals and families to help build the education bridge to transform an
inspired needy child’s life"
The good idea was also quickly adopted by two other Marine team member ( Gregoire Geoff and Derek Kokesh) who offered to
sponsor more kids from this school all through his education career. The project is manage by LUKMEF-Cameroon and extends
to other schools in the Limbe municipality beginning with first two luck kids from the school where this initiative was borne.