17th of September school
Construction on the school at 17th of September began anew in February. South of the city of Benguela, it is a dry, dusty area where many have moved in hopes of establishing a better life for their families…however there are no schools, healthcare facilities, nor access to clean water, and life is hard. The government began building a 10-classroom school in 2014, but progress was halted when funds ran out. In partnership with Educate A Child and the ExxonMobil Foundation, RISE completed the school, maximizing the investment.
There are over 4500 children in the area, with many attending class in tin structures – school in name only. Kids are excited as they watch the school get built, though it will only accommodate about 1000 of the many needing a school in which to learn. Teachers shared that they are thrilled and cannot believe this is really happening – a dream come true. “Simply, we are speechless, as the work was started years ago and now we see it being completed; students, teachers, and the community are very excited to see it.”
The school was dedicated on July 6, and the celebration was attended by the Benguela Provincial Governor, two Vice-Governors, Ministers from Luanda, Provincial and Municipal Ministry of Education officers, ExxonMobil, RISE, the community, teachers and thousands of children. Dedicated on Friday, students attended school in new classrooms on Monday – what an incredible experience.