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Educator & Leadership Institute

The ELI Initiative

Education provides the tools for young people to access diversified career options, higher income levels, sustained health and active citizenship. To achieve these outcomes, children must receive a quality education taught by skilled and competent teachers and school leaders who have the capacity to foster these abilities.

The Educator and Leadership Institute (ELI) builds teaching and leadership capacity in communities globally through professional courses and workshops. The first ELI was launched in northern Haiti in August 2016 and continues to support educators in science, mathematics, critical literacy, early learning, special education and school leadership. The initial objective of ELI Haiti was to impact the learning outcomes of 100,000 students by directly instructing 1,000 teachers and 100 principals in Haiti by 2020. We are well on our way to accomplishing this goal.

The vision for ELI is founded on a Haitian Creole expression,"Piti piti, ti pay pay, zwazo fe nich – little by little, straw by straw, the bird builds its nest." Since the start of ELI Haiti, other ELI sites have been established in Nepal and Egypt. Future ELI sites are being developed in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Ghana.

How It Works

Leading educators from Canada as well as university students and faculty members, travel to Haiti, Nepal, or Egypt to provide courses and engage educators in those contexts in professional learning. The courses have a focus on teaching and leadership competencies. The course instructors model experiential and problem-based teaching methods.

Each participant commits to a three-year involvement and takes one module of the same subject each year (with different materials and focus areas) to build deep capacity in that subject area.

Our in-country partners provide logistical support and arrange registration, classroom spaces, transportation, and all other Institute details. This supports the hosting of the ELI as a “centre of excellence”.

Who's Responsible?

Every person who is part of ELI is a volunteer. We all have day jobs but are passionate about making a difference in the world.

Overall leadership is provided by Steve Sider (Wilfrid Laurier University) and Jhonel Morvan (Ontario Ministry of Education)


Funding also from private donors, Rotary Club, Gay Lea Foundation, Charis Foundation