Sam Lucas

Sam Lucas

Antananarivo, Madagascar


  • Community Empowerment
  • Economic Development
  • Education

Sam grew up and went to university in New Zealand. After spending time volunteering in Cambodia, Sam realized an effective way to help some of the young people he worked with would be to teach them software development – a skill they could learn remotely and one that could be a way to earn income. This was the start of an idea that grew into Onja, which started in Madagascar in 2016.
Onja identifies the best and brightest young people in Madagascar, where only 5% of the population can afford college, and invites them to participate in a 2 ½ year accelerated program where they study English and Software Development. Onja secures contracts from European and American companies for remote developers, giving the Onja graduates a life-changing income – as well as fund future cohorts of students.

Our Collaboration:

We met Sam in Mahonoro, Madagascar in 2023 and issued our first grant for 2024, to help fund the next cohort of Onja students.

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