Muppets Zobi and Kami, along with Ms. Efia (Ghanaian actor Matilda Asante), star in the video modules that are part of IDP Foundation and Sesame Workshop’s Techniques for Effective Teaching program.

As schools reopen from pandemic lockdown, teachers and staff stand to face a number of new challenges. In addition to their usual lesson plans, they have the responsibility of implementing and adhering to new health and safety measures aimed at preventing Covid-19 outbreaks. They must also consider the psycho-social needs of children who have been cut off from support networks and whose family lives have been disrupted by job losses, illness and perhaps even loss of life.

Vulnerable and disadvantaged children have borne the brunt of pandemic disruptions, and not just in terms of lacking access to online learning. This…

Irene and Paulina

By Irene Pritzker, President & Chief Executive Officer, IDP Foundation, Inc.

I found my philanthropic calling in 2008 while visiting the Agbogbloshie market in Accra, Ghana. It was there that I met Paulina Nlando, a yam wholesaler and school owner.

Her school was a refuge for children whose parents had to work and were concerned about safety. The market was a hazardous place with open fires, snaking electricity cables, standing water, wobbly trucks loaded down with produce and wares, and little in the way of pedestrian amenities like sidewalks.

Paulina’s bare-bones school served around 400 students and was a lesson…

By Irene Pritzker, President & Chief Executive Officer, IDP Foundation, Inc.

Magdalene Sackey was in a bind.

The proprietor of a low-fee private school in Ghana with ambitions to expand capacity, she had acquired land for a new campus in Mataheko, a town in greater metropolitan Accra. By April 2016, a foundation was in place and pillars were erected. However, to make the six classrooms on the ground floor of the planned two-story building usable, Magdalene needed additional funds for roofing work, plastering, painting and fittings. She already had a loan outstanding with Sinapi Aba, a Ghanaian microfinance institution committed…

Kami and Zobi

By Irene Pritzker, President & Chief Executive Officer, IDP Foundation, Inc.

In the opening of a video entitled Practical Ways to Make the Classroom Creative and Fun, “Sesame Street” Muppets Zobi and Kami are playing a new song for their favorite teacher, Ms. Efia, slapping out the rhythm on a drum. “You know,” Ms. Efia points out, “you can use numbers to plan your rhythm” and “your eyes and ears to count the beats.”

“How about,” she asks, “instead of using boom-boom-boom, use numbers?” Zobi and Kami are all in, delighted with Ms. Efia’s improvisational twist.

Aimed at kindergarten and…

Lily Baah

By Irene Pritzker, President & Chief Executive Officer, IDP Foundation, Inc.

Lily Baah began her school on a shoestring, in Apaaso, Ghana in 2005, with six nursery students. Fees were minimal based on a family’s ability to pay, and at one point she opened a cleaning agency to keep the low-fee private school afloat. Sometimes, as payment for tuition, she accepted farm produce, which she served in the school’s canteen.[1] However, Lily noticed that her enrollment grew as parents realized that the students at Baah Memorial School were speaking English and performing better than their peers at other schools.


IDP Foundation, Inc.

The IDP Foundation, inc. is committed to encouraging and supporting the development of innovative and sustainable solutions to complex global issues.

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