Founded in 2010, BIZAA (Basic Institute for Zonal African Advancement) is an international, non-profit organization dedicated to the empowerment of the youngest citizens of Africa.
Our grassroots initiatives of providing educational sponsorships are eliminating childhood labor and trafficking one child at a time.
To provide education, technical training and job placement to African children in order to end childhood trafficking once and for all.
- Form a strong and impactful coalition of religious organizations, schools and corporations
- Initiate viable strategies to get underprivileged and vulnerable children off the streets and out of factories and farms, and return them home to their families
- Enroll children in existing education institutions with demonstrated records of success
- Create post-secondary learning opportunities for secondary students to continue their vocational education and launch their careers
Documentary: "The Boy They Called Bizarre"
Growing up in Nigeria, Founder Okey Anyanwu was blessed to be born into a loving family that valued education and had the fortunate and moderate means to send him and his siblings to private schools. But walking to school each day, he often witnessed child laborers in the streets. As he grew to be a teenager, the draw to help them also grew. Okey started giving away the snacks and food from his backpack to feed the hungry children, and also begging for food from his classmates to give away, a behavior the school’s headmaster called “bizarre”. From that point on the other children began calling him “Biza”, a name he is still known by today in his hometown.
As an adult now living and working in the US, he never forgot his roots, or the people who desperately needed his help. In 2010, Okey, along with a core group of supporters, began the grassroots international outreach called BIZAA (Basic Institute for Zonal African Advancement), with a name that reflects the courageous beginnings of an effort that has changed his life, and the lives of the most forgotten among us.
This documentary is his story. On a mission trip to Nigeria in 2016 he learns within hours that two eight-year-old twin brothers, once farm laborers that BIZAA had placed in school, have been kidnapped and sold to traffickers. Will he find the boys before it’s too late or will they be lost forever?
Change a Child's Life Today
Your sponsorship directly moves an at-risk child in Africa from working on the streets
(and subject to countless dangers and child trafficking) to studying in the classroom.
Moving Children from the Street to the Classroom Since 2010
Frequently Asked Questions
What is BIZAA?
BIZAA is the acronym for “Basic Institute for Zonal African Advancement.” It is a faith-based, grass-roots initiative focused on fighting the tragedy of child labor, child trafficking and domestic servitude in targeted African countries, beginning in Nigeria.
Is BIZAA a licensed Non-profit?
Yes, BIZAA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. All donations are tax-deductible to the full extent allowable by law.
IS My Contribution Tax Deductible?
Yes, your donation is tax deductible. All donations should be made payable to BIZAA. Please consult your tax advisor for more information.
Who benefits from BIZAA?
The primary beneficiaries are African children who have been forced into manual labor, sold into child trafficking, or pressed into domestic servitude. Their families benefit as well. Secondary beneficiaries are American youth in the churches and schools who participate in a curriculum meant to emphasize the promise of global solidarity and explore the injustices of child labor, trafficking and domestic servitude.
Where is the headquarters for BIZAA?
U.S. headquarters are in Minnesota, while our African headquarters is in Imo State of Nigeria. All mailed correspondence should be sent to the attention of BIZAA , 13570 Grove Drive #279, Maple Grove, MN 55311.
How are the results of BIZAA efforts measured?
We measure results by evaluating our annual plans under these categories: objectives, action plans, expected outcomes, and evidence of achievement. We collect data on a monthly basis and report this progress to both our local and international teams. Please see our annual report for more information.
Are there paid positions at BIZAA?
We have been blessed with dedicated volunteers both locally and internationally. We do provide a small remuneration to the organizational liaisons in Nigeria to encourage and assist them in managing the BIZAA projects in their communities, and to help them support their families.
Other than donations, how can I get involved?
There are many ways to volunteer: 1) become a member of our planning committee, 2) assist with youth programs, 3) fundraise for a particular area of BIZAA support, 4) participate on the annual mission trip, 5) donate basic hygiene and medical supplies, and 6) become a BIZAA prayer partner). We are always interested in establishing partnerships with schools, organizations and businesses. For more information, contact Okey@bizaa.org.
Will my information be shared outside BIZAA?
No. Donors will remain anonymous and no information will be shared with other organizations.
How are monies for sponsorships utilized?
Sponsorship dollars go towards covering the costs of sending a child to an existing school with a demonstrated record of success. A small percentage of the sponsorship is used to provide families with a stipend that helps to offset money the child would have earned by working instead of going to school.