By: Sean Maddox - CODE Director of Development
November 27th; Dialogue with Teachers, Parents and Students at Schools in Ibeno
Today we headed to the schools to present our project to the teachers, students and community members and to find out more about the environment where the schools were based. Our itinerary for the day was packed; 5 schools with a full agenda at each. Each school was located in the Ibeno zone, but a great deal of traveling on rocky roads was required. No time for meals or breaks, one school, then the next and so on until we had completed our mission for the day.
I have been traveling to schools in Africa for a long time, mostly to schools where CODE’s programs are active. It is rare that visits are made to schools by a CODE staff member before the project has been running for some time. The work we were about to do in Ibeno is usually conducted by CODE’s partners based in the countries. This was a real reality check.
The countryside was beautiful; rolling hills, forests, and flowing rivers. We drove by fields of tea, maize, kale, fruit trees and of course the suicidal goats. Many people were working to harvest maize and tea and tended to other work on their land or around their houses. We received curious looks as be passed since motor traffic in the area is seldom, and the vehicles that do pass re known to the people.
At our first stop, Kirwa Primary School, we were greeted by the Head Master Charles O. Ondara and his teachers. They were all waiting for our arrival, which I must admit was delayed by about half an hour. Charles gave us a tour of the school then we had the opportunity to speak to the students and parents. They were all very pleased that we would be helping improve the teaching of reading and writing and providing books, including books in their mother tongue, Ekugusii.