Educate Children and Fight Poverty in South Sudan

by Hope Ofiriha
Astrid & Olav - heading to Omilling
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!



Donated soil producing machine
Donated soil producing machine

$10 - buys 50 kg bag of cement to produce 70 soil blocks for building Mairo Primary School!

The Technology Development and Advisory Unit at the University of Zambia has donated a hand-press interlocking soil block machine to Hope Ofiriha to build the Mario Primary School. The donation—which ultimately will help educate hundreds of war orphans, former child soldiers, and other vulnerable children—is wonderful in so many ways!

Production of interlocking soil-compressed blocks is environmentally friendly because very little water and cement and no firewood are used to make them. It is also much cheaper than buying and transporting manufactured ones because they are produced locally with local soil and eliminate the need for mortar.

The donated machine includes an integrated mould and compression lever with two double channels for support, and a manual for operation and building techniques. The university also trained me for two days in soil selection, production, and curing of soil block techniques. Hope Ofiriha paid for the machine’s transportation, custom clearance, and freight costs.

Thanks to the University of Zambia for this fabulous donation, thanks to Monica, our communications consultant, for going above and beyond the call of duty in expanding our global outreach, and thanks to GlobalGiving for exposing this need to a worldwide audience.

We are looking for 200 people to sign up for recurring monthly donation of $10 each. Say if 200 people sign up for recurring donation, Hope Ofiriha will collect each month $2000 to build Mairo Primary School. This is a worthwhile project and we need your help to make it a reality.

Our donors have contributed $210 but still we need more funds! We are optimistic more donors will be joining us along the way.

We are really glad you are with us and Hope Ofiriha looks forward in working with you until this project achieves it goals. In the next three months we will bring you a new project update to tell you how the fundraising activities is going and if we start building the school.

This report was written by William Ochieng, and  Monica, our communication consultant.

On May 2, 2011 GlobalGiving Recurring Donation begins at 12:01 am EDT! This is a great opportunity for you to sign up for monthly recurring donations only $10.

Why recurring donations?
Recurring donations are a consistent and reliable source of income for our organization. This helps us in planning our activities several months ahead. 

By making a recurring donation, you pledge to give to your project every month. GlobalGiving will automatically deduct the donation amount from your credit card each month.

Hope Ofiriha appreciates that you give monthly only $10 than to donate $120 in December as one time gift.  $10 each month is a lot of money and it will go a long way to make a huge difference in South Sudan and Uganda. In Hope Ofiriha there are no small or big amounts. Every cents count!

 GlobalGiving is giving away $12,000 in bonus awards during this campaign!  

Here are the main reasons why you should consider signing up for monthly recurring donations to Hope Ofiriha;

  • The top 20 projects that receive the most new unique recurring donors will each be awarded a $500 bonus.
  • One project that raises the highest donation amount per month from recurring donations will be awarded $1,000.
  • One project that attracts the most new unique recurring donors will be awarded an additional $1,000 (for a total of $1,500!).
  • Projects must have at least 10 new unique recurring donors to be eligible for bonus awards.

The final results of this campaign will be adjudicated in August 2011. Bonuses will be awarded based on the amount raised and the number of unique recurring donors at this time. In some cases, projects may forfeit bonus awards if donors cancel their recurring donations before the awards are given.


William Ochieng visits Mairo primary school
William Ochieng visits Mairo primary school

Have you ever looked at the pictures of starving school building and felt powerless to help?

 On 08- Feb - 2011 president Omer al-Bashir, issued a republican decree accepting the final results of referendum, which supports the separation of the South into an independent state. North and South Sudan are presently engaged in talks to resolve the sensitive issues, which includes sharing of oil revenues, demarcation of boarders, and the contested oil-rich Abyei region.

How can you be sure that your money reaches the destination and will it make any difference?

These are feelings and concerns that we have shared, but we believe that by starting small we can make a big difference.

To keep up the momentum of this school building project we need 200 people to give $10 each – or more on regular basis. Could you be one of these, please? If so please donate to “Educate Children and Fight poverty In South Sudan” – through GlobalGiving on monthly basis or one time donation

While most charities focus on trying to transform a whole country, HOPE OFIRIHA wants to begin by changing one village for the better. Our vision sees the Omilling village being turned into a self-sustaining community that can act as an inspiration to others. Currently, the average village man/woman earns almost no income a week, lives in a mud hut and has no personal possessions. There is no health care and very few children will receive an education.

They go to school barefoot and sit on not comfortable wood bench. The walls of their classrooms are wide open and threatened with closure. These are the fortunate ones. The rest have no hope and no future.

Currently, 2018 children ready for primary school; unfortunately, there are no schools in Omiling village. If we don’t have help them, they will not get an education. Also, there are no government developmental activities at place in Omilling village.

That can change;
With only $10 from each donor given to Mairo school building project, the whole community can benefit. For a start, your money will help to pay for the 200 (50kg-bags) of cements to make soil blocks to build the school, increasing their chances of a future career, which will benefit the local economy. But also a portion of it will go towards supporting the child's family - the parents and children who are not able to go to school. There is extreme poverty in Omilling village.

This approach aims to empower the families to play a role in their community at the same time as preparing their children for the future. As more money is put into the community we believe that other areas in the Magwi County will also feel the impact.

We believe that a little can do a lot; Please help us make the people of Omilling village believe that too.

We thank you for your support in 2010 and will continue to partner with you for years to come until we reach the goal of this project is reach.

This report is written by William Ochieng - on his last trip to Omilling Village before the referendum on January 9th 2011.

Thanks for joining hands with Hope Ofiriha!











Juma Ibong -  school head master
Juma Ibong - school head master

No education – poverty wins.  If you know anybody to fund this project connect us to the donor.

Hope Ofiriha needs financial help to build Mairo primary school in Omilling village. There are 2018 children who are growing without education. But due to economic recession Hope Ofiriha faces a hard time to secure the funding. But our fundraising Team remained strong and optimistic!

The funding Hope Ofiriha is seeking would build a school on permanent structures, and this will be a key element in improving the education of the villages for the children that attend will the school.

Money must be donated by end of January 2011 for the project to build one classroom for children under the age of 8 years old. This will be added to $35 Hope Ofiriha has received to date from our UK/USA GlobalGiving donors. The construction will start once funding is available.

 Once again thanks for your ongoing support, and wish you a Happy Thanksgiving Holidays. Hope Ofiriha looks forward in working with you for years to come.

Onura Hills - school will be built here
Onura Hills - school will be built here

The Omilling rural area has needed a primary school for a very long time. The local children walk 24 km to the nearest primary school each morning and then 24km home again in the evening. Then Omilling community realized that building a primary school must be a priority for the area, and future generations. The school will be located in a beautiful area on the slope of ONURA hill and the site covers an area of approximately 400 acres. We started making the access road and clearing the site in march 2009, and building work will start soon when the funding is secured. Building a school in Omilling has been an enormous undertaking and raising the funds has been a struggle. We are hopeful that with the help of our GlobalGiving donors we will get the funding to give an education to children from the local area. We will use soil stabilized blocks, which is a new technology for the area. We trained a team of six people to make the soil blocks: a mixture of subsoil, cement, and a little water to make 50 soil blocks from five wheelbarrows of soil and one bag of cement. The soil block making team can make about 360 soil blocks per day. As the soil blocks are strong enough for constructing the foundations for the buildings, the community has provided traditional burnt bricks for this purpose.

This is a large worthwhile project and we urgently need the funds. We are will be posting progress update in the next three months keep you inform of the progress we are making.

Thanks for your ongoing support!

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Organization Information

Hope Ofiriha

Location: Oslo, Norway - Norway
Project Leader:
William Logai Ochieng
Oslo, Oslo Norway