One of the major areas of development the Nebobongo church leaders have been eager to pursue is a new primary school for the children in their community (replacing the buildings shown above). Currently the village of Nebobongo has both a government and a church-owned primary school. The government primary school is considered to be of low quality and does not prepare students for even a high school education. The elementary school education in government schools in the eastern DRC is conducted in the common trade language of Swahili while French is the language of instruction in all high schools, vocational schools and universities. This makes mastering the French language vital to any student with aspirations of gaining advanced skills or training. Understandably, many students do not make the transition well due to poor language skills in French. Church-owned elementary schools use French as the language of instruction, giving the students a tremendous advantage when they go to secondary school. Today in Nebobongo however, the physical facilities of the church-owned school are worse than the government school because the local church lacks the resources to build a proper building. This creates a poor learning environment during frequent storms and the quality of the classroom facilities are also directly linked to the quality of teachers that the school can attract and retain.
The total amount needed from outside sources is only $40,000. In 2015, E4 Project supplied the hospital and church with new hardened earth brick-making technology that has reduced the estimated cost of the buildings by 25-30%. Due to the widespread extreme poverty in the area, raising the funds locally for a new school is simply impossible. However, parents are willing to contribute what they can and have already begun collecting stones to be used in the school’s foundation.
Our plan is to help the community finance the construction of a new six-classroom primary school . The biggest impact of a new building will be bringing high quality education to hundreds of Nebobongo area kids, opening doors to new opportunities in life. A secondary impact will be a greatly increased ability to attract new staff and retain professionals with young children both at the hospital and the nearby bible school. Once built, young doctors at the hospital for example will no longer have to choose between serving the local population and moving to a bigger city to pursue a better education for their children.
Strong educational opportunities are foundational to any healthy community. This school represents a major developmental milestone for the Nebobongo community. Please join us in helping the community provide better opportunities for their children as they take a major step forward in their own community development.