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Weingartz Family Foundation Awards $2.2 Million to Expand International Samaritan Operations in Africa

International Samaritan
April, 24, 2023

ANN ARBOR, Mich., April 24, 2023 /Christian Newswire/ -- International Samaritan (IntSam) President Mike Tenbusch announced today that the organization received a $2.2 million grant from the Weingartz Family Foundation to fund the expansion of its scholarship program in Africa.

The donation will fund new operations in Nairobi, Kenya, and Kampala, Uganda. As a result, 200 young people will receive scholarships over the next three years.

Over 15 million people live and work in communities surrounding garbage dumps, making a living by finding items to keep or sell to escape the extreme poverty that affects one in ten people globally, according to the World Health Organization. The average life expectancy in these communities is 35 due to rampant disease, injuries, and the lack of clean water.

Dan Weingartz says his family has been impressed with how impactful their Foundation's investments are, especially in Ethiopia, over the last eight years. He joined IntSam's board in 2017 and has served on trips to Guatemala and Ethiopia to see the need and impact.

"International Samaritan has a beautiful mission of helping the poorest," Weingartz said. "I observed how hope exists among those we serve in garbage dump communities. I experienced how our scholars and families have faith in God, their families, and their communities. The seeds we are planting in Africa will bear fruit for generations."

Tenbusch said, "We are eager to accelerate our ability to help more children escape poverty. The pandemic wreaked havoc on the informal economies in these communities, and we've had to hold our number of scholarships steady over the last three years to ensure our families had enough food to survive the pandemic. It's exhilarating to know that our families safely made it through, and we can grow again!"

Tenbusch added, "This gift isn't just about helping young people attend school instead of facing a lifetime of working in the dumps; it's about giving them experiences, networks, and spiritual and leadership development so that they emerge as leaders able to change the future of their community and nation."

The garbage dump in the capital of Kenya is among the largest dumps in the world, with more than 1 million people living in surrounding slums. IntSam's mission leaders in Ethiopia, bordering Kenya and Uganda, will lead the expansion efforts. All three countries have freedom of religion provisions in their constitutions and a significant Catholic and Christian population.

"A strong network is a lever to effect wide-scale social change. Our African nation leaders will learn from and inspire each other, accelerating our mission to walk hand-in-hand with people in garbage dump communities to break the chains of poverty," Tenbusch said.

According to Weingartz, "Our family foundation believes healthy organizations with strong leaders excel. International Samaritan equips amazing local leaders and graduates to steward the most strategic investments to help their communities. Data and experience show a correlation between education, clean water and helping people escape poverty. We are humbled to be a catalyst for growth by helping the world's most underserved."

The Weingartz gift will help IntSam provide holistic scholarships, spiritual formation, and leadership development in seven nations and eight communities to 1,000 scholars. Students with the greatest need and highest potential are sponsored to attend school from elementary through college and trade schools. Funding each student's education costs about $3,100 annually, including tuition, uniforms, books, supplies, transportation, and food for their family.

About International Samaritan
Founded in 1994 in Ann Arbor, Mich., International Samaritan is a Christ-centered organization built on Catholic Social Teaching. Its mission is to walk hand-in-hand with people in communities surrounding the garbage dumps of developing nations to help them break out of poverty. It provides holistic scholarships for students from kindergarten through college, supporting scholars in Central America, the Caribbean, and Africa. To learn more, visit

SOURCE International Samaritan

CONTACT: Mary Henige, 248-302-8847, maryhenige@magneticacommunications.com