Hello Friends and Family!
As you all know this year I have been volunteering as a teacher in Namibia as a part of the WorldTeach program. This year I have learned a tremendous amount from the learners, my fellow teachers and the proud community of my small rural village of Iipopo. I have started this fundraising page on their behalf to solicit your help in improving Iipopo Combined School and the surrounding community.
First, I would like to tell you about my school and community. Iipopo (pronounced ee-po-po) is a small rural farming community located 40 kilometers from the nearest town. Our school, Iipopo Combined School, serves 383 children from kindergarten to tenth grade. Because our teaching faculty has long held a high standard of excellence and a strong commitment to educating in a very traditional setting, many of our students walk as far as five miles to attend our school.
Much of our community relies on subsistence farming and herding livestock for a living, with very little money to boost the school's funding. As a result our financial account is constantly insufficient to keep the basic classroom needs appropriately stocked and available to the students. Each year only so much can be covered; important regular updates to keep up with our growing size continue to fall behind schedule.
Over the months since I arrived I have had many long discussions with the school faculty and the village leader, who has been generous to house me this year on his homestead. In these talks we have pinpointed critical projects and areas in need for long-term development of the community and the school. Together we have assembled the necessary quotes to confidently set our fundraising goal at $10,000.
These funds will be used to construct the following projects.
- Extending our school's fencing to open up space in our cramped schoolyard. This will be most important to accommodate room for our agriculture and science courses to plant the appropriate gardens for study.
- A permanent playground area for our very young students to participate in PE class and enjoy during our midday breaks.
- Purchase the appropriate amount of textbooks for each course, as well as the appropriate maps and teaching tools to present lessons. Currently in many classes we are using outdated books, with upwards of six students sharing a single textbook.
- Provide our school lunch program with the firewood and food to continue feeding all of the students throughout the year.
- An open-air meeting hall for the students to study under in afternoon study periods and to be used for assembly celebrations. Our village is exposed to the strong desert sun throughout the day and the heat can make the classrooms very uncomfortable in the afternoons. A building like this will make an important addition to the school for parent teacher meetings and the community council meetings.
With these established goals I hope to leave a long-lasting impact on the community at large, well past my short time volunteering. Making a meaningful addition to a proud community in need, such as Iipopo, has been a lifelong goal of mine. I believe education is the keystone of development and the most effective tool in ensuring a better future for people worldwide. All money raised through this independent campaign will be going directly to the school and all extra funds will go into the school's coffers to ensure its continued success in future. You can help this cause by making a donation to my campaign on this page and by sharing this page with others via email and social media, or spreading the word with a posting at your work, school or within your community. Thank you for your time and your assistance with this campaign!
WorldTeach Volunteer Namibia
- Stuart Gesen
- J. D. La Fleur
- Martha McCornack
- Jamie McCornack
- Mac McCornack