Australian actress Rebel Wilson, known for her roles in Pitch Perfect and Bridesmaids, has visited Tanzania to meet her sponsored student Winnie for the first time.
The two have been sharing letters, gifts and photos for over eight years as Rebel has tried to help Winnie and her family escape the cycle of poverty by sponsoring her high-quality education at The School of St Jude.
Wilson is a long-time supporter of St Jude’s, which is charity school providing over 1800 of the poorest and brightest students in the Arusha region with a free, high-quality education. She visited the school on her way home from filming her upcoming movie Grimsby with Sacha Baron Cohen in South Africa.
While at St Jude’s, Wilson spent time with many of the students, teaching them a song from Pitch Perfect, practicing rapping and learning African dances.
“I loved some of the kids who were particularly interested in singing and dancing, it was really cool to see that and encourage them to be creative, the students here are all very serious and they love their studying so it’s good to do a few creative things as well,” she said.
She also got the chance to visit her sponsor student’s home and saw for herself how Winnie’s placement at the school is not only changing her life, but the life of her entire family.
Wilson’s passion for St Jude’s started in 2006, after she was inspired by a documentary on the School of St Jude and its founder, Gemma Sisia. The two spent time together on safari and at the school.
“We are delighted that Rebel decided to visit the school after being part of the St Jude’s family for the past eight years” said founder, Sisia.
Wilson is an official ambassador for The School of St Jude and believes that the school is creating real change by fighting poverty through education.
“The thing about St Jude’s is you know that you are directly helping people and the quality of the education and the quality of the living conditions here is just so amazing for these kids and it gives them such a headstart in life,” she said.
To learn more about how you can help students like Winnie, click here.