The VAD Foundation

The VAD Foundation is a nonprofit organization working in South Sudan to create community-driven development projects. Established by Valentino Deng and Dave Eggers after the publication of What is the What, the Foundation's first major project is the construction and operation of an 18-structure educational complex in Valentino's hometown of Marial Bai, South Sudan.

Marial Bai Secondary School (MBSS) has increased access to excellent secondary education, trained teachers, created equal opportunities for girls, and promoted literacy for children and adults in the region. MBSS is the highest ranking South Sudanese secondary school that is free for students to attend, a true leader in the movement to educate the new nation of South Sudan. 

Find out more about South Sudan, VAD Foundation history, and those who make it possible.

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Change a Life

Classes start in February. Marial Bai Secondary School's 500 students depend on generous supporters like you. We have until December 31st to raise $240k and we are 26% of the way there!

100% of online donations go directly to fund programs. 

10 Years: A Look Back at the VAD Foundation's History


Student Spotlights and Stories

Student Spotlights and Stories
The State of Higher Education in South Sudan

When South Sudan gained independence in 2011, one of the most pressing challenges it faced was building institutions of learning. There were hopes, therefore, that higher education would receive a considerable portion of the national budget. 

Food Crisis in South Sudan

For the world’s youngest nation, food insecurity poses a large threat.