Community News from Children In The Wilderness partner, H.E.L.P. Malawi
William Kamkwamba Community Library Blast
Since the building and opening of the William Kamkwamba Community Library at Nanthomba School by H.E.L.P. Malawi both learners and community members have increasingly patronised it with impressive enthusiasm. One of the learners who visits the library with a scientific motivation to transform his family and community as a whole is Billiati Ng’andeng’ande. Inventively, Billiati is now working on upgrading his small windmill into one that can supply enough electricity to all houses around his home. “I have books in the library to read and brain to think – I can,”Billiati asserts.
Teacher Trainee Dorms
Construction of one of the teacher trainee dorms at Nanthomba School broke ground on 1 July 2014. Funded by International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) the house is expected to accommodate six teacher trainees every year from Machinga Teachers College. It is therefore envisaged to significantly improve Pupil/Teacher Ratio at the school. The construction work is expected to be completed by the last week of August 2014.
16 scholarship students (12 boys; 4 girls) have completed their national examination recently. Upon success in the examination students shall be awarded Junior Certificate of Education (JCE) and get promoted to the third level (Form 3). While both Form 2 and Standard 8 students are at home waiting for their national examination results, 11 Form 4 students are expecting to take theirs starting from 8 July 2014.
Early Grade Reading
For the first time Nanthomba has embarked on an Early Grade Reading programme to enhance reading skills right from the first grade. Currently, it is intriguing to see a number of children already able to read Chichewa texts. The school has therefore organised an open day to take place on 25 July 2014 where, among others, Computer Classes outcomes and Early Grade Reading Program will be showcased.
Feeding Children At After-school Classes
By utilising the school garden, the community has managed to produce more than 950 kg of maize that will be used to feed Nanthomba learners during their after-school activities of tailoring, computers, English, life skills and jewellery making.
60 Standard 8 Learners Write Their National Examination
60 students comprising 30 boys and 30 girls completed their National Examination on 29 May 2014. Marking of the examination usually takes two months and that means results will be released at the end of August 2014 so that all successful candidates can join Secondary School during the first term.
IFAW visits Nanthomba School
As the partnership between IFAW, H.E.L.P. Malawi and Nanthomba community cements, the Director of Foundation and Relations, Ashley Baker and team visited Nanthomba School on 5 June 2014. During the visit Ashley had time to sneak into some classrooms and cheered learners.
Extra English classes pay off for Yusuf Vereson
Yusuf Vereson is a standard 6 learner who according to Faith Volgt could only read two English sentences in her class in March 2014. Yusuf showed a dramatic improvement after he managed to read a complete page most impressively by May 2014. According to Faith this is an improvement to boast about. Since she joined H.E.L.P. Malawi as a volunteer Faith’s main role had been teaching extra English classes at Nanthomba School to standard 6 learners. Faith concentrates on learners who really need support in reading and writing English. Learners graduate from her class after they have passed a reading and writing test of English texts with 100 per cent. So far 22 Standard 6 learners (12 boys; 10 girls) have graduated from her class this 2013/2014 school year.
Nanthomba School, in conjunction with Children in the Wilderness, is working hard to raise 60,000 tree seedlings that will be distributed in the community for reforestation of the area.
Excellency President Dr. Joyce Banda inaugurates power at Nandumbo Health Centre
Nandumbo Health Centre had been run on solar power since its opening in 2011 until H.E.L.P. Malawi, Central Wilderness Safaris and the Ministry of Health took an initiative to bring in mainline power in May 2014. The whole community has greatly benefited from this initiative as maize and rice mills have been installed; video rooms and barbershops have been opened. The whole Nandumbo Trading Centre is now powered. However, only the maternity ward at Nandumbo Health Centre has been powered while the rest of the buildings including staff houses are waiting for Alternating Current (AC) wiring. According to the District Health Officer, Mrs Zuza, the government does not currently have a budget for switching the power system from direct current to alternating current , necessitating the rewiring of the whole Health Centre.
After-school Life Skills classes
Nanthomba School has been conducting after-school Life Skills classes for Standard 8 learners. International volunteers paired with local teachers have been giving lessons that mostly concern day-to-day lives of girls in accordance with government curriculum on Life Skills. Since first term of this 2013/2014 school year, classes have been held once a month.
Report by Lemani Ngaiyaye