Peter Tabichi is a science and math teacher in one of the poorest schools in Kenya, and he gives away the majority of his paycheck to help his community and students at the Keriko secondary school in Pwami. The 36-year-old Franciscan friar just got those funds back, and then some: He was awarded the Varkey Foundation's $1 million Global Teacher Prize, presented to him Sunday in Dubai by actor Hugh Jackman. Tabichi beat out 10,000 other nominees from nearly 180 countries around the world, the Guardian reports.
Some of the highlights of Tabichi's efforts in the famine-plagued Rift Valley include starting a "talent nurturing club," helping his students (more than 90% of whom are living in poverty) enter international science competitions, and assisting them with an electricity-generating project that won an award from the Royal Society of Chemistry—all despite the fact that the school has just one computer and shoddy internet access. "I'm immensely proud of my students," Tabichi says, per a release. "Africa will produce scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs whose names will be one day famous in every corner of the world," he adds, per Quartz. "And girls will be a huge part of this story." Read more about Tabichi's inspiring work in Kenya here. (Read more uplifting news stories.)