Three short years ago we began to pilot a variety of programs in 410 Bridge communities with the sole purpose of improving the quality of education for 100% of the children living in those communities. One of those programs targeted public Primary Schools (grades 1-8) and was designed to eliminate the barriers to a quality education.
We created child sponsorship programs with our strategic service partner – BrightPoint for Children – that established feeding programs, hired qualified teachers, and purchased teaching supplies. We also brought together US churches, schools, and individual donors to fund infrastructure (buildings, floors, and desks) to provide an environment that was more conducive to effective learning.
In the past year, Endana Primary School is one of those schools where we’ve been working hard to eliminate the barriers to a quality education. Where they previously had only six teachers for 300 students, they now have eleven qualified teachers. Cement floors were installed that have all but eliminated painful jiggers in the children’s feet. Clean fresh water now flows to multiple holding tanks on the property, which in turn, makes a school feeding program possible. A fuel efficient “jiko” (cooker) was installed that reduced the burden on parents to supply firewood to cook the food. A local foundation (Zeitz Foundation) recently joined the effort by helping to build three new classrooms….
The one final item was text books…. thanks to the generosity of a donor in the Atlanta area, we were able to build a teacher administration block and a secure storeroom that now stores a text book for every child, in every subject, for every grade.
Last week, I had the privilege of leading a team of families from King’s Ridge Christian School (Alpharetta, Georgia) to Endana Primary School for the presentation of the books. King’s Ridge had their students write messages of encouragement to the students at Endana Primary. About 2,200 hand-written notes were placed in the front cover of the text books.
It was an unprecedented day in Endana, and all of Kenya for that matter. Endana Primary was already the most improved school in its district and we look forward to even greater things to come.
Special thanks to Endana’s Community Partner churches – Brazos Pointe Fellowship (Lake Jackson, Texas) and Newspring Church (Anderson, South Carolina) – as well as the donors, child sponsors, and well-wishers that are using their gifts to serve the people of Endana.