While the children were away for the holidays, the teachers and headmaster worked very hard getting ready for the new term. Construction was finished on the third building, the computer lab was set up, the library improved, the teachers went through computer training, and a new teacher was hired and trained.
After receiving electricity last term, the school was able to set up the computer lab, for a second time. The computers were put into storage in 2010 when the school moved into their new location, without power. The school has done very well in the past three years - slowly finishing the classroom blocks, playground, bathrooms, office, library and computer lab. Now that electricity is installed, the computers were taken out of storage and set up.
Unfortunately, only 12 of the computers are working right now. The other 5 will not boot up, and have a problem with the capacitors. BeeHive has found a way around this problem - when classes use the computers, they split up into two groups - half use the library, the other half the computers, then the students swap. There is plenty of space for more computers in the lab, so the school hopes to have more working ones soon!
The teachers did computer training over the holidays. Some of the newer teachers who started after 2010, when the computer lab got put away, had never used a computer, and there were some very funny moments in training!!
The children love using them. They also have not spent much (if any) time using a computer, so they are enjoying learning and practicing their skills on them.
The library at BeeHive School was designed with reading in mind. Big windows bring in natural light, and it is so inviting everyone wants to walk in, pick up a book, and read. The children are very good at following rules - one rule is the library is a quiet zone - it is amazing how quiet students can be when they are all deeply enthralled in books! Loads of shelves were kindly donated by the building company SR Nicholas (the company building reserve bank and Shoprite in Mzuzu). They were installed during the term break. The only thing a bit lacking are the books. BeeHive has quite a good collection, but more books are needed.
There are plans to build a student hall and entrance to the school. Six trips of sand were brought to the school, and the school is in the process of finding a way to get more bricks.
The good news about the exams and the improvements over the summer have helped the succesful start of a new term. This term welcomes 172 students and one new teacher. The teacher will teach Standard 7. This is great news for the headmaster, who has been teaching this class and running the school at the same time. The headmaster is still going to teach Standard 7 English, and French to the whole school, but is excited to focus on administration and school development.
It’s all about recycling and refurbishing donated tools and equipment then redistributing them to young entrepreneurs who have the vocational skills but lack the tools to make use of their skills.
Thanks to those who have contributed. We are continuing the fundraising until we have at least $10,000 - to get this project going. The “Circle Our World With Love” awareness campaign is going well. We are almost at the halfway mark with over 12,000 miles dedicated to our “Tools For Empowerment” (TFE) project. People are dedicating their running, bicycling, and aerobics miles to TFE. This is mainly to develop awareness of the project but we will work to get as many of the miles sponsored later.
The TFE project is about changing lives through the donation of tools. Remember, if you enable one young entrepreneur to be productive, you are also giving a whole family a new lease on life. That young person will provide for the whole family. So by contributing $250 for a tool kit, you change the lives of 6 to 8 people in a family. That’s a nice thing to do.
If you run or bicycle, please join our campaign to “Circle our World With Love” to help us reach 24,901 miles. Every mile counts, so join the party and dedicate your miles.
Winter is almost finished in Zimbabwe, as it’s a short season and people now are saying, “ We are only left with wind.” That means August is coming to a close, with warming sun but still a cool breeze. It will soon be tropical again.
The ASAP funded girls, thanks to your generosity; at St. Monica’s School are all doing well in their studies. Perhaps these girls work a little harder because they know they have been given a special opportunity. The cost of education remains the largest obstacle to girls getting an education in Zimbabwe. The exciting news is that for every year of additional education, girls will earn 25% higher wages.
Every child represents a future, the future of the community, of the country, and indeed the future of the whole world. Thank you for your part in helping a few girls have a chance to be special when they never thought they could be.