Community Empowerment in Action; Rebuilding Our Orphans’ Elementary Schools
In this month’s blogpost, we update you on the progress of repair work to four flood-damaged elementary schools attended by our sponsored orphans. This vital work has only been possible because our supporters and friends gave so generously to our repairs appeal. Your kindness has made a huge difference.
Below, the next generation in Jebel Awlia deserve the chance to attend school.
Last summer, severe flooding swept across Sudan, destroying homes, lives and livelihoods in its wake. It came at a time when millions of Sudanese children were pinning their hopes on returning to school after long months of Covid-imposed school closures. In too many cases the flooding meant they had no school to return to. School buildings were damaged – many beyond repair – and school furniture and materials washed away.
Sudan is grappling with high levels of learning poverty and with every week that students are deprived of schooling, the challenges deepen.
See more on this in Combatting Learning Poverty.
In December last year we launched a seasonal appeal to raise money to repair four severely flood- damaged schools attended by our sponsored orphans. We are indebted to our supporters for all their kindness.
You can learn more about our orphans’ elementary schooling program and our appeal in these links: Rebuilding Hope From Hardship to Hope Our Orphans Schooling Program Sudan Floods Update Christmas 2020 A Big Thank You
Update on Repairs
Community Empowerment in Action
“The initiative is highly appreciated by the schools’ heads and staff. They are happy with it. It really made a difference – they said about 13 teachers were using the same office including the headmistress, as they left their office for fear to collapse on their heads at any time. So the new office will provide a good solution.”
Staff reaction to building repairs at one of our sponsored elementary schools. Photos of some of the building work featured below.
It is exceptional for Women’s Education Partnership to participate in rebuilding work. However, initial post-flood surveying in October last year undertaken by our staff revealed that four of our ten supported elementary schools were so severely damaged that work needed to be done urgently if our orphans were to stand any chance of returning to the classroom. A fifth school was beyond repair and has had to be removed from the schools register. This is a blow for communities already facing economic deprivation and lack of educational resources. In December we undertook further inspections with building experts and undertook the ordering of materials with local suppliers.
The schools we support as part of our orphans program were built and set up through local community initiatives and we have worked closely with them as our programs have evolved over many years. We consulted school and community leaders and they were keen to undertake the task if we could provide funding, assistance and monitoring. The result is an inspiring example of community empowerment. In collaboration with school heads, we made sure that building materials we funded were delivered and distributed to the schools. Schools heads, working with parents’ councils and local resistance committees then organized the repair work, which is being carried out over the coming months. Much of this work is done by parents and community volunteers in their own time at the weekends.
“Adila met the headmistress with members of the Educational council (parents) who committed themselves to carry out the building task. The school started the implementation immediately. As they worked voluntary they decided to work weekends. That is why they did not finish yet, despite that they were very close to finishing.”
From this month’s report on building repairs.
Adila Osman, our literacy coordinator, is in daily contact with school heads and is monitoring building progress. She is also on top of any gaps in supply of materials, phoning and chasing up suppliers, as in the case of Hassan Ibn Thabit School in Jebel Awlia where there had been delays in delivery of bricks – now resolved.
Above, just some examples of damage caused by flooding to our supported elementary schools.
We will be providing photos and more detailed reports shortly.
This is a literacy and orphans post for Women’s Education Partnership.
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