Within a few weeks of our fundraising exhibition ‘Peace of Art’ wrapping up in November last year, we got started on our new project… constructing a primary school for the Segno Gerba community, who live in a rural village in northern Ethiopia. Their primary school was blown away in a storm in 2015 and since then some of the kids have had classes under trees or in mud huts or cancelled. Over 60 Grade 4 kids have been walking 1.5hrs each way to attend classes at the next nearest school, not surprisingly many have dropped out.
We are rebuilding a brand new primary school that will provides Grades 1 to 8 for up to 400 kids! Over the past few months, the site has been a hub of activity with contractors and the local community involved in the build. The foundations and columns are complete, and soon the concrete block walls will start to be laid. Toilets, a library and teachers room are underway, and all-new desks are being made locally in Lalibela. Plans are also in place for the school to be connected to the electricity grid which will enable adult evening community classes in basic agriculture to be offered. We believe all is on track for completion for the start of the Ethiopian New Year, which is in September 2017.
Finally, our fundraising efforts are also enabling two water projects to be constructed in Segno Gerba and a nearby village to enable access to clean water. This will make a significant impact on the health and hygiene of these communities, as well as reducing the current time spent girls and women spend walking to distant water supplies.
We look forward to sharing the next update in June!