About SCOOP

Who?

We are a non-profit organisation building schools to end child poverty in developing countries.

We aim to raise funds positively in order to support grass roots organisations who focus on children’s welfare and who share our passion for education.

We currently support projects in Cambodia and India

Our Founders, Andy & Calvin, also created Syrias Vibes – an initiative that supports medical clinics and emergency response services in Syria.

Why?

The countries we work in have a huge amount of children living in poverty or engaging in child labour.  They also rank as the most corrupt countries in the world, and children are the ones suffering.

There is also no welfare system in these countries – no safety net to catch these children and families from slipping into never ending poverty. We believe education is the power these children need to break this viscous cycle.

How?

We hire local builders and support local grass roots organisations to ensure long lasting impact.

We also aim to be as inclusive as possible for donors and have built a global community with partners in Australia, Germany, Syria, Spain and England.

We encourage Teachers and Development Studies graduates to work at the schools and to develop our partner organisations’ capacities.

SCOOP Story

The following article was written by Gráinne Coyne, and featured in the Irish Independent in Sept. 2015

“How can there still be so much poverty in the world? When so many people have so much?”

This is the question I [SCOOP Founder Andrew] kept asking myself after I traveled through Cambodia back in 2008.

After University, I traveled through Central American and South East Asia, and was deeply affected by the inequality and suffering.

But nothing could prepare me for the poverty and sadness I encountered in Cambodia.

Children roamed the streets begging, paedophiles worked in schools, schools were under funded, under-appreciated, poorly run and worse – often seen as an obstacle to sending children out to work in child labour.

Then I visited a little family-run school, where a man, his wife and children shared a bedroom upstairs with 18 other children, all of whom lived there and attended the school downstairs, which was a dark one roomed affair.

When I returned to Ireland, I couldn’t shake Cambodia nor that small under-funded school .

I hatched an idea to run a fundraising gig over Christmas for the school, where big bands would play upstairs and DJs would play down in the basement.

We raised over €3,500 that night, and promptly wired it over to the small school. They build new bedrooms and new classrooms. The change in the lives of those children was astounding. I’d caught the ‘bug’, and I knew I had to keep doing more.

My mates I ran some more fundraising events, but it still didn’t seem enough.

I wanted to set up a different type of organisation, one that wasn’t big and faceless like the major charities.

I decided to start my own organisation that was inclusive and positive, and gave young people a platform to get involved and make a difference.

So with a group of energetic, passionate and likeminded people: with my brother, Calvin James, the auctioneer George Gerard Mealy, the artist David Uda, comms expert Annmarie Brennan and the club promoter Conor Feeney, we began to plan just such an organisation.

I also met Kati Richter – a young German Child Psychologist who had been living in Varanasi, India for seven years, and who was living with, caring for and teaching children whose families lived on the streets. Her incredible work was an inspiration, and SCOOP began working with her almost immediately.

Fast forward another two years or so and enter Lisa Rennie – a young Australian Development Studies graduate who worked in Cambodia with the UN. While in Cambodia she came across the SCAO – SCOOP’s partner organisation in Cambodia – run by the same family I met on my first trip in 2008. And so SCOOP Australia was born.

I guess we are nowhere near the end of the SCOOP Story. Why don’t you get involved and see how far we can go together…

SCOOP Team

Andy

Andrew Sweeney

Founder / Events / SCOOP Tour
Co-founder Calvin James

Calvin James

Syrias Vibes & SCOOP Co-founde...
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Jodi Rashbrook

India & SCOOP Australia Co-fou...
Lisa Rennie

Lisa Rennie

SCOOP Australia (Founder)
  • man sitting on boat, Cambodia Calvin James, Co-Founder

    "We work in countries that have no welfare system and where a high percentage of children don't attend school or are engaging in child labour to support their families.  We then work with local grass root organisations working tirelessly on the ground, and who are deserving of support - by providing  financial assistance and long term dedicated volunteers. We also offer a platform to the next generation of young altruists coming out of Ireland and indeed from around the world. We provide opportunities to make a real impact on the lives of children and their families, through volunteering and positive fundraising."