Seeing the St. Francis and Clare the first time is stunning. Especially for people who know, how it looked like before. The second time that the Minister of Education and Minister of Land visited the Construction Site – let them astonishing. It has been some time when the ministers eyeballed the School in May 2018. Since the school is changing its face nearly every week, the Ministers were overwhelmed to see St. Francis and Clare about to be finished on the 15th November 2018.
The outward appearance has changed, as well as the new faces of the secondary school. Mr. Sakala the Head teacher and his Deputy head Mrs. Kapesa were there to welcome the visitors to their future school. Everyone gratefully received the honorable visitors. As a part of her Monitoring visit, Sr. Concillia represented Misean Cara as one of the biggest donors of the project. Sr. Loice guided everyone through her little treasure, finishing with a gathering in the library. “We are very thankful” Mr. Mabumba (Minister of Education, Zambia) said, it is truly a blessing for the Community and the whole area to receive such a huge Secondary School. He added saying, that this catching area is one of the highest populated areas in whole Zambia. Thus, the school is urgently needed, because the government cannot afford to provide enough schools, not to mention staff member for such. The conclusion of this important meeting was very satisfying. We are all looking forward to finish the ground floor end of November 2018. To be ready for the students in January 2019, everything must be in place.
A few days later at the 18th November the first students came to visit their future school. Followed by their parents, this meeting was about including future Parents and their children to discuss. Lead by Paul from Misean Cara, we talked about the expectations and thoughts of St. Francis and Clare. The Parents described their impressions about the school as “speechless”, “beautiful” and “the best thing what happened to the area”. Moreover, all parents were very delighted and thankful to be able to send their children to this school in January. This school will bring great advantages to the community and the whole surrounding area. “The next school is a 2 hours walk” one student mentioned. Because of the location of other secondary schools, pupils can walk up to 3 hours to reach the next secondary school. Transport money is too expensive for the majority of the people around. Poverty is a major reason why most of the students can’t afford going to a school which is very far. Unfortunately, many schools are too far. A simple reason for this phenomenon – there are too less schools. So, “there is no need walking far distances anymore” one student concluded.
The problem of walking far distance creates further problems – except of “only” time. It is increasing the danger of falling into drug abuse and threatens inside the compounds where the students are walking through. School dropouts and addiction to drugs could be a result of being on a 4 hour walk a day.