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.
Our Mission is 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 a post-secondary learning opportunity for students to continue their vocational or career education.
Documentary "The Boy They Called Bizarre"
Growing up in Nigeria, BIZAA 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 working 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 to them, a behavior the school’s headmaster called “bizarre”. From that day forward the other children began calling him “Biza”, a name he is still known by today in his home town.
As an adult now living and working in the United States, Okey 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 in 2016 he learns within hours that two 8-year-old twin brothers, once farm laborers who Okey placed in school, have been kidnapped and sold to traffickers right under the public eye. Will he find the boys before it’s too late, or will they be lost forever?
Change a Child's Life Today
Your sponsorship will move an at-risk African child from working on the streets
(and subject to countless dangers and child trafficking), to studying in the classroom.
Moving African Children from the Streets 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, non-profit social outreach initiative focused on fighting the tragedy of child labor, child trafficking and domestic servitude in targeted African countries, beginning with 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, but please consult your tax advisor for more information. All donations should be made payable to BIZAA.
Who benefits from BIZAA?
The primary beneficiaries are African children who have been pressed into manual labor and domestic servitude, or sold into child trafficking. Their families benefit as well. Secondary beneficiaries are American youth in the churches and schools that 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?
Our U.S. headquarters is 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?
n We measure results by evaluating our annual plans under these categories: objectives, action plans, expected outcome, and evidence of achievement. We collect data on a monthly basis and report this progress to both our local and Nigerian teams. An annual report is also available.
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 team in Nigeria, to encourage and assist them in managing the BIZAA projects in their communities, and to help them support their families. There are currently no paid positions in the US.
Other than donations, how can I get involved?
There are many ways to help:
1) Volunteer on our Minnesota-based planning committee
2) Assist with our youth and marketing programs
3) Fund raise for BIZAA (e.g. car wash, pancake breakfast, rummage sale)
4) Participate on our annual mission trip
5) Donate basic hygiene, health or school supplies
6) Become a BIZAA prayer partner
We are always interested in establishing partnerships with organizations, businesses and schools. For more information about any of these opportunities contact Okey@bizaa.org.
Will my information be shared outside BIZAA?
No. Donors can remain anonymous and we never share your information with other organizations or businesses.
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 minor percentage of the sponsorship is used to provide the family with a small stipend that helps off-set the money the child would have earned by working instead of going to school.