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Madonna's Charity to Begin Work on Schools in Malawi

Philanthropic organization will break ground in March

February 2, 2012 8:40 AM ET
madonna
Madonna appears on "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno" at NBC Studios in Burbank, California.
Kevin Winter/NBCUniversal/Getty Images

Madonna's troubled Raising Malawi charity will soon break ground on the construction of schools in the impoverished African nation, but the schools will be run by the community rather than the singer's organization. Work on the first school will begin on March 30th in the Kasungu region, and all 10 of the planned schools are planned to be completed by June of 2013. Raising Malawi is contributing $300,000 to the non-governmental organization BuildOn to create the schools. BuildOn has already built 50 schools in Malawi and 427 schools around the world.

"This remains a very big priority in my life and I am excited that with the help of BuildOn we can maintain our ongoing commitment to move forward efficiently," Madonna said in a statement to the Associated Press. "I have learned a great deal over the last few years and feel so much more confident that we can reach our goals to educate children in Malawi, especially young girls, in a much more efficient and practical way."

Raising Malawi has faced some difficulties in achieving its goals toward building schools for girls in the nation in the past year. The organization dropped plans to build a $15 million school in March, resulting in the firing of several board members who were accused by auditors of extravagant expenditures on cars, housing and various luxuries. The group also encountered problems in acquiring land for the project.

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