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Meeting of 26th April 2012

Meeting of 26th April 2012

Charlotte is a 16 year old student at the Sotogrande International School (SIS) on the Costa Del Sol. She described the Nabugabo Community Project which is being undertaken in the Masaka District of Southern Uganda by the students and teachers.

Uganda is amongst the poorest countries in the world. Most people live on less than 1 euro per day with 40% suffering from malnutrition. Most of the Nabugabo popoulation depends on farming or fishing and the barter of goods is normal, as there is little money. Masaka is at the epicentre of the AIDS pandemic in Uganda and 25% of the children are AIDS orphans or HIV positive. School fees are relatively high and many families cannot afford to send their children to school. Less than 20% of the children who attend primary school continue to secondary education. 

The Nabugabo Community Project is designed to serve the local community and meet local needs in an accountable,  sustainable and socially responsible manner. I acre of land has been purchased on which the new local community, primary school wll be built with the help of local builders and many children and parents in the local community. Phase 1, which should be completed for the school opening in January 2013, will consist of 3 classrooms, 3 staff quarters, a toilet block and a kitchen. 2 competent, local, earlychildhood teachers have expressed deep interest in teaching at the school.

26 students and teachers from the Sotogrande International School will travel to Uganda at their own expense in July 2012. They will spend 3 weeks as teaching assistants in 3 local primary schools and attend a short course on sustainable farming on the equator, to help them to prepare for a school farm which will help to feed the children. Mr and Mrs Batten are moving to Uganda to live and will oversee the Project.

To date, the school has raised 25,000 euros of the 50,000 needed to build the school. A further 10,000 euros is needed for classroom furniture and teaching resources. The opening budget, based on 60 pupils, is 15 euros per pupil per month. This includes 3 staff salaries, maize and beans daily for the children and ongoing costs of exercise books, toilet paper etc.

Donated money is being collected by The Kindred Project, an NGO formed by SIS and registered in Gibraltar - Gib 217.
Rotary Club Marbella-Guadalmina has donated 2,500 euros towards the cost of furniture and teaching materials.

* If you want to make a donation to this Project, click the link on the HOME page of this website*

David Batten, the teacher at SIS who will lead the Project, has answered detailed questions relating to the Project, which will be registered under Ugandan law as "Nabugabo Community Centre". The eventual aim is to use the school to offer a multilayered education programme for families who are unable to pay school fees. Payment in "kind" must be made, in terms of food for the school or labour in construction or farming. At present they are constructing a traditional rondavel on the site and hope, eventually, to provide morning care for pre-school children; afternoon vocational training for young secondary students; evening adult literacy and numeracy classes.

Permission to build and operate the school has been obtained, in principle, from the Ugandan authorities. Final permission cannot be granted until the school is built and operating. Architects drawings are available to see. A student sponsorship scheme has been started to cover the operating costs of 900 euros per month, and is expected to raise sufficient funds by July 2012 to cover 2013.