Commissioning of Juba Road Teacher House!August 7, 2015
As the local saying goes, teachers are the pillars of tomorrow’s Uganda; we are in full agreement with this proverb, which is why we constructed a twin teacher house at Juba Road Primary School in northern Uganda, located just 30km from the South Sudanese border.
Over the past few months, our Construction Co-ordinator Vincent has diligently visited the work-site every single Wednesday to check up on the progress of the building, and we are happy to report that all the work-men completed the house in good health with no injuries! As you can see, all their hard work has paid off, and we were delighted to commission this fantastic twin house on Thursday 6th August 2015.
For the occasion, we were joined by district officials including the District Education Officer for Amuru, the PTA, the school management committee, the school’s teachers, pupils, and the local community to hand-over the building, cut the ceremonial ribbon, unveil the plaque and have a good look around the completed house before enjoying refreshments together to mark this important moment for the school. At the event, the school’s Head Teacher Fred O’Kot told us: “on behalf of the community, you should know that we really appreciate all your assistance which is helping us develop the school. We want to protect everything you have done at the school and not abuse (any of the resources) you have provided. We are so thankful for your help despite not being located too close to your offices”.
The teachers who will be moving in the new twin house are Millie-Grace, the Senior Woman Teacher and Richard, the Deputy Head Teacher, who travels a considerable distance to the school every day. Mr O’Kot, chose these teachers because Millie-Grace’s role is: “paramount – and living on the premises will enable her to attend to the girl children more fully”.
We caught up with Millie-Grace during the commissioning and she told us: “I am really happy about the house! I think I am even going to move in straight after the commissioning; my children are also very excited, and they like the house a lot. The house will really help me in my job. Although the girls here are doing well, it is nice for them to know that I am here now so they can come and see me because we have power in the house, so I won’t need to spend so much time away from school to do things like charging my phone in the village.” We are so pleased to hear that the house has freed up Millie-Grace’s time to be more available to her students!
As part of African Revival’s memo of understanding with Juba Road Primary School, the school has also established a maintenance committee who will be responsible for looking after the building, so that it stays in tip top condition for many years, and can benefit as many teachers as possible. As the building belongs to the school, we were keen to encourage the local community to take ownership of the building. The maintenance team of five includes teachers and parents who are eager to maintain the school’s facilities so that children can learn in a clean, functioning, and welcoming environment. The committee have taken this role seriously, and have already planted seedlings around the school, and are planning to spruce up the classrooms by painting them!
As our Country Director for Uganda, Peter, mentioned during the commissioning, it really is worth celebrating mile-stone moments in schools, because new facilities like these are helping to break down barriers between pupils and teachers, which contributes towards making learning a more enjoyable, supportive and, dare we say it, fun experience. The pupils at Juba Road Primary School wear bright blue school shirts, and our hope is that with the dedicated support of their teachers, their futures will be as bright as their uniforms!
We hope Richard and Millie-Grace settle in well to their new homes, and we look forward to hopefully partnering with Juba Road Primary School again in the future!