Hurray! We've reached our goal for this project thanks to your support. Thank you!
Your contributions have provided so much more than an education. Our students learn the value and see the benefits of hard work, gain leadership skills that will last a lifetime, and build their self-confidence. Listen to the inspiring words of Kibone Sarah, a 10-year-old student in Grade 4 at Arlington Junior School:
“My opinions are treated with respect by other children. I have also learned to be responsible and smart at all times because we learn that good leaders should be exemplary. I have promised myself to continue in the line of leadership so that in the future I can become an activist for children’s rights and equality between men and women. Yes, I can!”
And the difference you are making goes beyond the walls of Arlington Junior School. You’re providing a bright future for children like Alex, who attends our outreach school in Bumwalye:
“Bumwalye has made me a more confident person through the various debate tournaments I participated in that were organized by the Outreach Program,” says Alex.
Although this project is closing, we have another project on GlobalGiving with the same goals, and we're still working hard to give the gift of education to students in Uganda. The support we've received from this project and others will help us to accomplish our lofty goals for 2018 like:
We cannot thank you enough for your support that makes all of our work possible! You are truly making a difference in the lives of thousands of children with your generosity.
Thank you for all you’ve done to support these amazing students in their quest for an education!
As a school that prides itself on providing the best educational opportunities for its students, we are always looking for new ways to inspire creative learning at Arlington Junior School. That is where our new newsletter, “Mulembe Magazine,” comes in.
Originally inspired by Head Teacher Sarah, our student-written newsletter has become a way for students to get a taste of journalism and artistic expression. Every term hosts different events, activities, and visitors. Students are encouraged to report on those happenings to keep our international and local supporters up to date on the latest news at AAH. In the newsletter’s “Creative Corner,” pupils have the chance to create everything from poems to drawings to creative stories.
The former International Coordinator Danielle, along with the librarian, Phiona, created a Newspaper Club to increase participation in working on the newsletter. After recruiting students to join and setting up monthly meetings, the club participants select student editors to edit all content. Student club members also write and edit departments on local news, visitor news, and the creative corner. The hope is that this club will inspire students to think critically of all the events that happen at AJS as well as spark interest in journalism.
Click here to read the lastest issue!
Last year Godfrey and Peninah worked hard at their secondary schools to perform well on their national exams that mark the end of their secondary schooling. They received some of the top scores in the country. Now, we are so happy to announce they have been awarded a scholarship by the Ugandan government to continue their higher education!
Godfrey and Peninah can remember how hard they worked to ensure their success. “It was hectic. I used to study all night because I wanted to get the maximum points,” said Peninah. While studying hard and revising notes with friends at school, Peninah can also recall some great words of advice that helped her push through the many hours. One of her mentors at school said to her, “Don’t read to just pass, read while calculating what you have invested in your education. Make sure you do well so you utilize what you’ve paid for this chance.”
Thinking back on all of the support that her sponsors had put towards her education helped her sure she was getting the most out of her opportunity of being at school. In the fall, Peninah will be attending Makerere University to study Education and Literature.
Looking towards the future, Godfrey is so grateful for the opportunity to continue his studies at university. Godfrey will be heading to Gulu University to pursue Medicine and Surgery. This chance, “is a dream come true” for him. “I had no hope of doing this course because of the financial burden, but I am so happy to be living my dream by continuing to study medicine.”
As Peninah and Godfrey prepare to make the big transition to university campuses across the country, we are nothing but confident in their future success.
Meet Joshua. He’s 18 years old and lives a 20-minute walk from Arlington Junior School. Last December as he returned home from boarding school, he went to get water for his family at the regular fresh-water well that usually services his village and four other villages nearby. He found it broken and unable to provide clean water for the hundreds of people who normally rely on it.
First, he asked about the local authority’s response to the situation. He was told that the well wouldn’t be fixed until at least next year. But this is so urgent, he thought. So he took matters into his own hands.
“We cannot wait for the government,” says Joshua. “I believe we can find a solution to our own problems instead of waiting for someone else.”
As a student who didn’t have the money to fix the well himself, Joshua tried to get the community involved. He went door to door in each of the villages that gets water from that source. He recommended that each person contribute at least 1,000UGX ( or 30 cents USD).
Going into this initiative, Joshua was very confident that the community would cooperate and give to help themselves. He quickly found the community members’ reaction to be mixed, and most were unwilling or unable to help.
“It was tough when money was not coming and looking at the budget I drew up, we were far, far below the target,” says Joshua. “I was beginning to give up because people give you negative responses and you think ‘Oh, I should just give back all the money.’ But I had a goal, and I knew it should be finished before I go back (to school). I had read in the newspapers that there was hepatitis and cholera going around, so I knew that if it affected this well, it would affect all of us.”
Walking to and talking to each household took all of December and almost all of January, which was basically Joshua’s whole holiday home from secondary school. By the end of the holiday he had raised enough money to buy three sacks of cement and additional materials and tools. He recruited a local contractor, a local chairperson, and some boys from the surrounding area, and together they mixed the cement and fixed the well themselves.
Today the 80 to 100 families (in addition to the families of Arlington teachers) who use the well again have access to water! Not only did Joshua help to bring water closer to families, but he also helped prevent a cholera or hepatitis outbreak. He also helped prove to his community what can be done if you work together.
“Working on the well was one of my most happy days on earth,” says Joshua. “It gives me joy every time I pass by it. I am thankful I had the ability to convince other people to do the right thing. I don’t need to build another Arlington, but I believe that it was a small thing I could do for my society at the time.”
In 2006, the teachers of our sister school, Arlington Traditional School, solidified our partnership by bringing their annual Reading Challenge to Uganda with a theme of “Reading is Global.” ATS’ hope in including AAH in their tradition was to instill a positive reading culture with our students in Uganda to help their educational journey. At that time, Arlington Junior School had a very small 'library' which was a pile of books in the head teacher’s office. Students had to individually visit the head teacher and choose from a small pile of books. As the years passed and more volunteers travelled to Uganda bringing hundreds of books with them, our students got more and more excited about reading.
Fast-forward to 2016 and we celebrated the completion of our 11th Reading Challenge in our own spacious library full of hundreds and hundreds of books and learning materials! With the highest number of books read being 572 and the total number read by all students of 105,896, it is safe to say that our students’ super power really is reading. We could never have seen the growth in our students’ passion for reading and their English skills if it wasn’t for Arlington Traditional School. With countless donations of books, reading challenge materials, support, and even a recent donation of money for books, ATS has really made a positive impact on our school.
In late October, students, staff and community members gathered in our library to acknowledge the dedication the students showed in reading! All the best winners in the reading challenge were awarded gifts for their achievements. The overall best readers were given school bags, pencils, a reading book, and stickers. The top three readers at each class level were also awarded gifts of a reading book, stickers, pencils, pencil sharpeners, umbrellas, and kerosene lanterns. We also awarded the top readers in the “infant” classes, “middle” classes, and “upper” classes with similar gifts to encourage themselves and their peers to keep reading!
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