In 2007, our Founder Kate Curran left her career as an attorney to travel the world. Her personal call to action followed the sudden death of her brother, father and mother in under two years. Her mother’s last words, “I’ve had a great life,” and her father’s lifelong commitment to public service inspired her to begin a journey to define “a great life” that took her across four continents.

For Kate, her year-long journey was a course in gratitude, gratitude for the majesty of the world evident in Patagonia’s Glaciers National Park, gratitude for the sacrifices of others so evident in Normandy, and gratitude for the sacrifices her parents made for her own education. But it was the 12 children sharing one pencil in a Tanzania classroom, the young children working under the hot Andes sun, and the children crossing through crocodile-infested waters to get to school in a Zambian village who moved her to action. Inspired by that gratitude and the lengths to which the world’s children will go for an education, Kate founded School the World to fight extreme poverty at its roots by bringing quality education to the world’s poorest and marginalized children.

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It was a vision founded in gratitude that led Kate to School the World. It is through dedicated supporters and partners that this vision became reality.

Now in it's 13th year, School the World has built 117 schools, 59 playgrounds, stocked 635 libraries with 42,890 books, trained 7,395 teachers and empowered 7,821 parents to be their child's "first educators".

Additionally, our newest program, our Middle School Program, has given scholarships to 1,159 young adolescents so that they can continue their education past elementary school and learn the digital and life skills necessary to build brighter futures for not only themselves, but their families.

Kate built an interconnected world of future change makers through School the World's high school student service learning program. High School students from the United States fundraise to cover the cost of the trip as well as the build of the school & playground and one year of parent & teacher programming. During their Winter, Spring or Summer break they travel to the rural community to finish the construction of the school & playground, meet the children they are giving the gift of education to and gain first-hand knowledge of how the power of education can change the world and lift children and their families out of poverty. Since launching in 2013, nearly 1,000 high school students, known as World Changers, have traveled with School the World, with an average return rate of 35%.

Most recently, Kate was honored as one of Forbes’ 50 Over 50: Women Leading The Way In Impact recipients.