Leaders, future leaders, friends, family, teachers, schoolmates, classmates and well-wishers I humbly call upon you to help me raise funds to build a clean water tank system for the pupils of Holy Innocents’ School for All in Buhweju district, Uganda.
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”, so did Nelson Mandela say. For education to be impactful there has to be peace, for with peace one can actually enjoy education. Sadly, this is not the case for most school goers in Uganda and certainly not for those that attend Holy Innocents’ School for All in Buhweju District, Western Uganda.
Holy Innocents’ School for All is one of the few primary schools in Buhweju district and the only one of its kind that offers some sort of free education to orphans. It was started in 2017 by Justus Assimwe, a mentor and close friend of mine. Justus’ ambitious vision to educate as many orphans as possible aligned with my values as a UWC student and a firm believer in the power of education.
When I visited the school earlier in January, I was torn to see the living conditions the young ambitious pupils lived in. The school which is both a day and boarding school is in a sorry state from the windowless classrooms, a single congested dormitory room, and a water source almost 2 kilometers away (1 mile), one can imagine the 5am experience Monday to Monday these pupils have to face. Water being an essential need they have no choice but try every means to find it. I was shocked and ashamed to see and be told that at times the pupils resort to the water from the sewers (drain) in the village because the usual water source is crowded by locals and animals. This has resulted to many pupils falling sick, acquiring scabies, typhoid etc. and missing school. But it hasn’t all been bad for Holy Innocents’ school; the school summed its 2017 academic year with its candidate class performing above expectations in the national examination. 100% of its candidates passed The Primary Leaving Examination (PLE), the national examination, performing above the 90.9% national average. All these pupils are now eligible to join post-primary education which is a big milestone. As you already know about the fruits of education, this brought joy and hope to the peasant community of Buhweju.
With a project already in mind this was the reassurance point that I, we - had to do something to keep these little angels dreaming. I was unsuccessful in securing a Davis Project for Peace Fund but this didn’t mean Holy Innocents’ won’t have clean water, so here we are. Whereas the school needs more help in renovation of buildings, a clean water storage is urgently needed. A water tank is to be bought with gutters and a tap system to harvest and store rainwater. This water tank will be of great use to the young school, it will be utilized by the pupils especially in the morning as they prepare for school as well to prepare food and safe clean boiled drinking water. The water tank will also provide water for building as part of the school is still under construction.
An estimated amount of $1,491 (UGX 5.7million) is needed to erect a fully functioning water tank system. Below is the rough approximation of the budget.
Materials and cost
1. Plastic water tank 14,000 liters (3,700 gallons) - $950
2. Gutters (20 x $8) -160
3. Tap system (5 x $20) - $100
4. Bricks (200 x $0.08) - $16
5. Cement (5 bags x $9) - $45
6. Sand (2 forwards x $60) - $120
7. Labour (2 x $50) - $100
Total - $1,491
Airtel Money number: +256 753 777 884 for mobile money transactions
Thank you very much for reading this far and for your generous contribution to this meaningful cause.
My name is Faisal Namanya Kabandana. I was born and raised in Busia district which is a small town at the border of Uganda and Kenya. I am currently about to take on my 3rd year (out of 4) as a B.A. in Economics & Management Business candidate at Skidmore College in Upstate New York, USA. Before this I was at King’s College Budo in Kampala, Uganda after which I managed to get a scholarship to study at the United World College (UWC) Robert Bosch College (RBC) in Freiburg, Germany. At UWC, I was exposed to different cultures, nationalities and values including using education and peace as a tool to promote positive global change and a sustainable future. I can honestly say it changed my life forever.
In my still ongoing journey, I have been blessed and privileged to attend some of the best schools in the country and the world. But it hasn’t always been straight forward for me. Growing up in Busia, I faced a number of challenges including family financial instability where my future wasn’t a certainty. Living on the border, there was always a security fear due to the cross-border tensions which sometimes interfered with education and business. I was also always intimidated in the schools I attended due to my background as a boy from a small town where most of the youth didn’t make it to university or secondary school. Nonetheless, I am managing to overcome all this thanks to the unconditional support I receive from God, my family, friends, schoolmates and teachers. I have grown to value education above all and also appreciate my background because it is indeed special.
For now, I have a burning desire to make a change in my community and country using the knowledge and skills I am learning together with all the support I can get. My goal is to be part of or start businesses that promote social welfare in Uganda by focusing on education, economic strategy and empowerment.
Gakyali Mabaga, “So little done, so much still to do”
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