Today CASA Gambia presented the plans for Rehabilitation of Brufut Lower Basic School to the School Management and the Village Development Committee. The management and village elders where impressed by the professional work done by the CASA team. The presentation was held during the happy occasion of the gift of 60 chairs which were brought over from The Netherlands.
The CASA team worked hard in the past 2 months to make a proper project plan, budget and approach for realizing the renovation of the school. The plan is to help raise the quality of education in the school along three lines: Physical structure, Maintenance management and Social education.
Three urgent investments needed
- The physical structure is the most obvious challenge to take on. Anyone visiting the school can quickly assess the dare state of the walls, floors, leaking roofs and broken toilets. The fact that 1.875 children have to be educated in only 46 classrooms by only 66 teachers has already forced management to start educating in two shifts a day, effectively cutting education for each child in half.
- Maintenance management might sound over the top, but you might question why the school is in such a state. When Ebrima Jatta and his friends in CASA (Community Action Support Association) visited the school they all graduated around 20 years ago, they were shocked. Off course funds have been low all these years while children numbers have doubled even tripled over that period. But is it is also a matter of not knowing what to do, how to keep clean and do proper maintenance. So our second line is to educate and train people, but also to make stakeholders from the school village and ministry aware of the need of structural maintenance.
- The third line is Social education. The young people form CASA have been lucky to have high quality education both in The Gambia and abroad. The children today need to be inspired and taught to take their education serious and learn to see what life has to offer. Our actions and life stories will be part of that inspiration. In this line we’d also like to involve parents, especially mothers, in educating on sensitive matters like family planning, gender equality, circumcising and dealing with corruption.
The CASA team realized it can’t do all of this at the same time. We had to scope the project to a manageable size to make it feasible to raise funds for it and manage the execution of the plan. So the first project will be on taking on the most urgent needs. The project is split in 3 project phases to renovate a part of the school during three consecutive school vacations: summer break 2018, Christmas break 2018, summer break 2019. In parallel plans will be drawn up to expand the school with 8 class rooms and bring maintenance and cleaning to a higher level.
After agreement with the School board, Village Development Committee and the Ministry of Education, CASA Gambia will start raising funds for the Rehabilitation of Brufut Lower Basic School. In parallel it will raise awareness, mobilize people to start helping and find experts that can do the renovation work.
Our project flyer can be downloaded here Brufut Lower Basic School FLyer EN