Celebrating 60 Years!
Our story begins in 1951 when 71-year-old Welthy Honsinger Fisher incorporated World Literacy, the culmination of her career in education. She soon inaugurated Literacy House, which combined literacy and vocational training in Indian villages. In the 60 years since, World Education has catalyzed social change at the community level through programs that link education to health and economic, social, and civic development.
World Education received its first USAID grant in 1969 to develop an integrated literacy model, combining literacy and family planning in India. Its success led to the project's replication in five additional countries worldwide.
1984 marked the launch of the Kenya Rural Enterprise Program (K-REP), which provided grants to small business operations, primarily benefiting women. By 1990, K-REP had invested $3.3 million dollars in microenterprise projects and had created more than 8,000 jobs. This innovative project had long-lasting results; today, K-REP is an independent Kenyan organization.
In 1990, the System for Adult Basic Education Support (SABES) was created as a staff development system to strengthen and expand adult literacy programs. World Education became and continues to be SABES' Central Resource Center.
The Girls' Access to Education (GATE) program, which began in 1998 and continues today, gives Nepalese girls literacy skills and knowledge about personal safety, health, and sexuality. Thus far, World Education has reached more than 34,000 girls--90% of whom have graduated--from its GATE program.
The visionary educational practices that Welthy Fisher developed have been used to educate millions of the world's most underserved populations in Africa, Asia, and the Americas. Partnering with communities and local organizations, World Education has worked in more than 60 countries and has educated more than 20 million children and adults. Most importantly, World Education has helped people transform their own lives through education.