Nov 24, 2015

Wild About Reading!

Our students love to read!
Our students love to read!

Reading is a priority for us at Arlington Academy of Hope (AAH).   In October, our primary school in Uganda wrapped up its 10th annual reading challenge with a reading carnival.  This Year’s theme was "Wild about Reading”, and included lessons on animals and habitat around the globe. Math exercises were included too. During the event, all seven grades presented poems, songs and skits about the "Wild about Reading” theme. We invited representatives from the government and local schools to come to the reading carnival, so they could appreciate our emphasis on reading.

Over several months, a total of 71,987  books were read! One girl, Felistus, read 608 books and broke the standing record of 600 books which was set  in 2012!  The 2nd place reader, Sebastian, read 562 books and the 3rd place reader read 560 books. Teachers quizzed the students to ensure they understood what they had read.  The guest of honor was the editor of a national children's magazine called "Toto". She was very excited when she saw first grade children reading fluently. She randomly asked some to read aloud, and they all read with ease. Their enhanced reading skills makes the students proud, and many help their siblings at home to learn to read.  One student, Mary, is even teaching her mom and grandmother  to read!

We thank our teachers, who put in lots of extra time over the last few months to help our enthusiastic readers.

Congratulations to the winners and for breaking the record! 

Learning about animals & habitat around the world.
Learning about animals & habitat around the world.
Students are proud of their reading certificates!
Students are proud of their reading certificates!
Sep 1, 2015

It's Back to School for Our College Students!

James and Millie won govt scholarships to college
James and Millie won govt scholarships to college

Please remember us on September 16th, when GlobalGiving will match your donation starting at 9am!

When AAH Co-Founder John Wanda and his brother were in college, they were the only people from the village who had made it that far. This week, we have over 70 students headed off to campus (including first, second, and third year students)!   This is a remarkable number of young people who are gaining the skills and background to prepare them for jobs after college.  To help them gain experience, we also encourage them to work, intern, or volunteer in between school terms, to gain "real world" experience.  This year, for example, students interned at AAH and also were teacher's aides at a number of local public schools that we assist.  We believe this helps students determine what they want to do for a career and also helps them stand out when applying for jobs.

It's not just formal universities though. A number of our students have opted to go a vocational/technical route to gain job skills. We have several in nursing school, teachers colleges, and engineering.  All are good options for Uganda's economy.

We got some wonderful news on two exceptional students. James and Millie scored very high on their college entrance exams and got full college scholarships!  Both will study engineering and are special indeed. Millie had a sponsor throughout her studies, but James was unsponsored and covered by pooling donations from child sponsors and supporters.   James said he was "so very grateful and that he owuld be able to help his family and others".  Millie was estatic and grateful too, saying that "going to school has changed my life and that of my family".They - and our other students are making a difference in the lives of their families and communities too.

Speaking of university-bound students, we were saddened to learn of the death of a young woman who would have been a freshman at the University of Notre Dame this Fall, Rebecca Townsend. Rebecca had organized a high school group that sponsored a little girl named Joy at our school. She was an extraordinary young woman who touched so many in her short life. Check out the link below to learn more about Rebecca.

Links:

Jun 2, 2015

Apr-June 2015: News from the Village

This student with albinism can now go to school.
This student with albinism can now go to school.

Please consider supporting us on GlobalGiving's July 15th Match Day, so your donation gets a 50% match and goes further! 

Our primary school and secondary school students are back at school and studying hard.  This year, we have increased emphasis on math and science to help students gain the background and skills the workforce in Uganda seeks.  The materials for the Annual Reading Challenge are being prepared for each grade at the prmary school.  The Challenge, which begins in July, will incorporate some math and science topics as well.

We believe in well-rounded education, including physical education. We're thrilled that thanks to some very special donors in the U.S. and the U.K, we have at long last been able to get construction equipment to the remote mountain village to make the school field safe. It was fill of rocks and a very uneven surface which led to injuries. The field will be enjoyed by children from the village and nearby schools as well.

On a related note, 18 of our primary school students won at the district track and field event and went to Nationals in Lira! Competition was tough but it is a great experience for the students, and winners receive a point that helps them get into University. The results are not yet known but we're wishing them luck!

We have partnered with Asante Mariamu and Restore International to help students with albinism go to school.  Every child deserves to go to school.  We also have two schoolchildren with serious medical needs --  Amos lost an arm and a leg in an animal attack as a small child, and seventh grader Miriam is battling leukemia. We hope that both can be back at school soon. Check out our website or Facebook (Arlington Academy of Hope) for more details.

And on the outreach front, we are providing training, books, and some school supplies at nearby underresourced public schools. We are also giving some support for a school lunch program at the nearby Bulobi school, so children can be fed and stay for the full school day. It's hard to learn when you're hungry, and students at nearby schools often go home at lunchtime and don't come back to school in the afternoon.

None of this would be possible without you, so we extend our sincere gratitude. Thank you for making a difference!

Amos just got a new prosthetic leg!
Amos just got a new prosthetic leg!
Miriam is in chemo treatment for her cancer.
Miriam is in chemo treatment for her cancer.
AAH students enjoy track and field competitions
AAH students enjoy track and field competitions
Breaking ground on a playing field at our school.
Breaking ground on a playing field at our school.

Links:

 
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