AASD (Action d’aide sanitaire pour le développement/ Health Action for Development) is a local organization with an office in Monkoto and a partner of Salonga National Park. AASD supports literacy programs in the corridor of Monkoto.
In the past five years AASD mentored about 500 people each year. Learners are mostly women. The work is organized around 10 centers – 1 in Monkoto and the 9 others in various villages of the corridor. AASD supports and guides about 35 learners in each of the centers. The class schedule is chosen by the learners themselves. The majority opted for the lessons to take place between 6am and 7am before going to work or the evening when returning from the fields. After 6 months, moms are able to read, write and perform small calculations (addition and subtraction). Lessons are given in Lingala, the vernacular language of the region. The courses are completely free for the learners. Infrastructure and the materials for the classes are provided and so is the payment of the educators.
Upon request by the women AASD expanded the support and now also assists women in manufacturing soap of a higher quality than previously available, which adds an income-generating activity.