Today I ventured out into the mountains to go visit a primary school in my sector. As you know, I’m working to start the Community Mobile Library Project (CMLP) in my area. Back in November, I held a training for teachers from each school in the sector to learn about how to organize a library and use books in the classroom and also to gauge interest in the CMLP.
Last week I got a call from one of the teachers from the training asking me to come visit his school. I agreed, so today I called my moto driver friend, Damien, to take me out to visit. This primary school is on the very edge of my sector, and it took about an hour to reach there. This school is so far away that Damien had never even been there before!
The road was incredibly bumpy and winding. We moto-ed up mountains, went past water falls, and wound our way back down by a river. The road eventually narrowed to a tiny path, which would be impossible to drive in a car. The scenery was stunning, and I tried to enjoy the sunny weather while clinging onto the back of the moto.
This school is the most impoverished school I have visited in Rwanda. There are no doors or window panes in the eight classrooms. The floor is unpaved. Students sit on benches instead of desks.
When my moto pulled up to the school, students flooded out of their classrooms to come and look. The teachers held an impromptu assembly to welcome me warmly to the school. When asked by the head teacher, the students all said they had never seen a white person before.
I’m excited to bring the mobile library to this school! Until now, I have been going school to school to seek out teachers to partner with in this project. I am hopeful for this library’s success because in this case the teachers sought me out instead of the other way around. I am also excited because I know how much the school can benefit from the books.
In addition to books, the school also requested some other teaching aids to use in the classroom like maps and science materials. I plan on making them some rice sacks with maps, diagrams of the skeleton, etc to give to the teachers. Hopefully the next time I can go, I can give the teachers a small lesson on how to use the rice sacks and how to make their own. The teachers also requested some volleyballs and soccer balls to use during PE class or after school with the kids. If you have an used balls you would like to donate, I will be happy to deliver them.
The trip out to the school was a blast, and I’m glad the teachers invited me out to visit. I can’t wait to see how the library goes at this site. Days like today remind me why I love my job!