More Than Me, an organization committed to empowering young girls at risk of sexual exploitation through education in Liberia, West Africa is thrilled to announce its participation in the Chase American Giving Awards contest, results to be aired on NBCon December 8, 2012. The winner of this competition will win a $1 million grant, which, for More Than Me, would be life-changing, not only for the organization itself but for the thousands of Liberian girls it could reach.
More Than Me was founded in 2009 by Katie Meyler, a young woman who faced a tough childhood filled with abuse, drugs and alcohol. Katie’s mission is simple: to provide education, opportunity, and safety to the most vulnerable girls. When asked why she has chosen to help children in Africa rather than here in America, she says, “I grew up poor in America. My single mom worked the overnight shift at a Lipton Tea company making minimum wage… but I always had free school. I never had to work the streets to find my next meal; there were government programs and neighbors that could help. In Liberia that just doesn’t exist and before I’m an American, I am human.”
The organization has thrived on purely volunteer support, spearheaded by Katie’s passion and dedication to the course, and since its creation in 2009 has raised enough money to send over 100 Liberian girls to school. It is currently working with the government of Liberia to transform an old bombed out, looted building into an all-girls academy, with after school programs focused on teaching the girls entrepreneurship. With an additional $1 million, the organization would be able to see this dream come true even faster, employing a skilled, locally-based team.
Katie has been called “The most passionate person we’ve ever met” by Bono’s ONE Foundation, a “Social Media Role-Model” at a UN-sponsored Mashable event and named “Outstanding Woman of the Year” by the NJ Commission on the Status of Women.