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The IDEA Foundation is committed to the improvement of education at all levels. The Foundation designs, implements and funds programs which change the lives of learners and teachers in developing countries and emerging democracies.  It is particularly interested in supporting access to education in countries where the number of schools and teachers are limited.  IDEA volunteers have created innovative approaches to reading and literacy development and implemented them in countries of Africa and Eastern Europe. 
 
In addition to innovative academic programs, the Foundation supports schools with funds for books and other supplies.  When the need is great, and limited funds can help, the Foundation works with local educators and parents to determine how best to help.

B.E.A.R. Rooms

The IDEA Foundation has worked with the Echo Group, an international development firm located in Portland, Oregon, to establish BEAR (Be Enthusiastic About Reading) programs in Namibia. The programs are highly cost-efficient and are designed to involve parents and children in reading improvement activities. The Foundation has a waiting list of 24 communities in northern Namibia asking for BEAR programs. Each program has a basic cost of approximately $4,000.

BEAR is community-based program uniquely designed to accelerate literacy in places where a lack of books limits children’s ability to read beyond a basic level. BEAR programs are centered around a reading room in the community center and operate under the supervision of teachers and volunteers.

The first BEAR room was opened in Okahandja, Namibia, with the cooperation of principals and a core group of teacher organizers. Over the past three years, the Okahandja BEAR program has continued to serve hundreds of children without incurring cost beyond initial start-up, proving it to be cost-effective and sustainable.

The International School of Cluj

The International School of Cluj and Happy Kids Kindergarten are not-for-profit educational institutions administered by the Happy Kids Foundation, which was established in 1996 to promote innovative approaches to improving education in Romania. Together the two schools aim to offer the highest standard of education, from pre-school to middle school.  The mission of the schools coincides with the IDEA Foundation’s mission “to improve education at all levels and to enhance access to education for all.”  IDEA is proud to be associated with ISC and Happy Kids Kindergarten.