Astrid & Olav - heading to Omilling
Hope Ofiriha has purchased 30 bags (50Kg) of cement with the donated money by our GlobalGiving donors. These cements are in the stores awaiting the construction to start soon.
Work on the Mario Primary School—which will give hope to war orphans, former child soldiers, and other vulnerable children in Omilling village—is racing along! I recently met with Astrid Rohde Wang and Olav Lunde Arneberg, two students from The Oslo School of Architecture and Design, who have volunteered to redesign the school’s structure at village Standard.
For several months nothing was happening on the project, keeping the door closed for hundreds of vulnerable children to ever receive an education. Behind the scenes, the Hope Ofiriha team was busy working to find out why this valuable cause is failing to attract support.
The draft plan taken to Omilling village in February had to be changed after we consulted with the Education Ministry at Torit. By March 15, we had a full set of revised plans. Also, 65 percent of our supporters said the current “designed school structure” is not good at the village level, so they were hesitant to support it.
Besides redesigning the school structure, Astrid and Olav will travel to Omilling village in August 10 to meet with villagers and study the physical features of the donated plot where the school will be built. They want to make sure the villagers are involved in the design process so they have ownership of the project from day one. The two students will redesign the structure to meet the local physical conditions, and the final product will reflect Omilling village’s living standards.
We also plan to break the Mairo Primary School project on GlobalGiving into phases to garner more support.
Our fingers are crossed all these changes will keep the recent momentum up. Not only did we find the two new volunteers this month, the Technology Development and Advisory Unit at the University of Zambia donated a hand-press interlocking soil block machine to build the Mario Primary School. Good news!
Thanks to the University of Zambia and big thanks to Astrid and Olav for connecting Hope Ofiriha with The Oslo School of Architecture and Design!