New Buildings In Use
We are pleased to tell you that the school building project that Congo Action and Working Together – Congo started in July 2018, has been completed on time for September, for the start of the academic year. This summer, we added another 3 new classrooms to the 3 already built last year: This constitutes 6 classrooms all together, representing a complete rebuilt of ourKavumba primary school, a very much needed operation due to the degradation of the original wooden school, built in 2006.
The school has gained in popularity over the years, due to the genuine interest and support of the village chief, the dedication of the teachers, and the supervision done by the Catholic academic board.
In September, we had 360 children registered, as opposed to 220 children in 2017. The head teacher said they were inundated with demands that they could not meet! The demand for education in remote villages continue to be high, but also the school has been working so well, and the academic results are excellent:85% success in exams results, enabling children to move to secondary education. What a formidable encouragement for all concerned!
This is not an ordinary school: it is more than that: it is a dream that came about after a visit to the area, where Congo Action was working to establish rural cooperatives and sewing workshops. This was in 2005, a meeting with the village chief, a kind offer of a plot of land that could be used as a building plot, a suggestion that a school was very much needed….. they saw our visit as the foundation of hope and opportunities for the children of the village. From then on, we felt we had to carry on the responsibility of such a precious and well meaning “Gift” from people who had so little, when we had so much in comparison.
It took much determination and fund raising efforts to achieve what the villagers expected us to achieve for their children: years of work and chance meetings often with people who are generous of their time and money to give, not to forget our long standing supporters who have stayed with us after the individual sponsorship programme terminated. We are so grateful to all of you who have contributed!
The construction of such a building is never easy in an area where there are no roads, but muddy tracks spoiled by heavy rains. There are very serious transport issues, because trucks get damaged or stuck in the process, and this often proves to be the most costly part of the project. There was also the question of water needed for building work: the villagers rallied around to go and get from the springs some distance away the 1000 litres of water requested every day. The children also joined in with the carrying of materials, bricks, wood, etc.… The teachers volunteered at week-ends to assume the supervision of the building materials stored on the premises… It was all achieved in a spirit of goodwill , hard work and good humour. To summarise it all, these are the words used by Vital Kulimushi, our Congolese co-worker who supervised the project:
“The success of the project is due to the following factors: we had a motivated team of skilled workers, good understanding and collaboration between the village chief, the parents’ committee, the teaching body, and the support of the Congolese authorities to see the project coming to fruition. We are also grateful to Congo Action and Working Together – Congo for their trust and understanding when faced with real difficulties in trying to achieve the project on time.”
And here we are to day, we have given the Kavumba village the legacy of a primary school