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A visit to Uganda

A couple of weeks ago, school director Stephen and social worker Wendo from Boston Children Centre visited Uganda, where they participated in a course in poultry farming. They also met with colleagues engaged in similar activities as B.C.C.

The course was held in a secondary school (Rugashali Senior School) in Kagadi, located a short distance from Lake Albert on the border between Uganda and Congo-Kinshasa. The secondary school in Rugashali was founded by Gabriel, who is now the school’s director.
The leader of the course was David Ssemwogerere, who has vast experience of poultry farming at Suubi Centre in Lubanda in western Uganda. Suubi Center was founded on David’s initiative, with the support of a non-profit organization in Australia, HUG ( “Help us grow”).
The centre was built from 2010 to 2011 and consists of a secondary school and a vocational school (Suubi Secondary and vocational college), as well as a health care center. The vocational school provides training in many different fields (agriculture, tailoring, baking, knitting, mechanical repairs, etc.), and also offers training in sports, dance and drama. Impressive!
David also runs a very successful poultry farm to help poor children. The eggs that are produced in the centre are sold, which gives the children the opportunity to earn their own money and pay their school fees. The profit makes the project increasingly self-sufficient.

The experience of Suubi center is particularly interesting for B.C.C. The participants in the course have learned how to build simple chicken coops and how eggs and poultry meat are produced. They have also learned how to market the products in order to achieve maximum profit.
Stephen, in turn, shared his experiences from B.C.C. He talked about the vegetable garden, the water project and the construction process of the primary school and the secondary school. He also talked about the joys and difficulties that he faces daily in his work. The schools have contributed to significant positive changes in the community.

Stephen also talked about his experiences on the radio, on the local radio station, KKCR (Kagadi Kibaale Community Radio). This is an impressive local radio station that broadcasts 18 hours a day in 7 different languages. The broadcasts cover 10 districts and reach about one million listeners.
The radio station has a professional team of editors and hundreds of volunteers who help with producing the radio programs.

The information and experiences gained during this tour are very useful and give us the opportunity to start a chicken and eggs project in the school as well to make some more revenues. We plan to start such a project as soon as we can gather the funds need for starting.
We also got encouraged with what David is doing to his community and we wish we can also get our vocational skill training centre as well as a health centre.

For more details read Stephen’s report here.

 

A visit to Uganda – director’s report

Dear Friends,

We recently attended poultry farm training in a school called Rugashali Senior School in Kagadi, Uganda. The school was founded and managed by Gabriel and his community members. The training was facilitated by David Ssemogerere who has been doing poultry farming as an income generating activity for his Suubi Center project in Masaka, Uganda. The training was financially supported by Laurence, our Australian friend and supporter. I and Wendo traveled to Uganda to attend the training. We learned how to build a simple poultry house by ourselves using local materials available within our environs. We learned how to handle the hens both for meat, eggs and how and where to market the products for maximum profitmaking.

David has successfully done poultry farming to benefit poor children in his school where by poor children who cannot afford paying school fees are given chicken to keep. Eggs produced are sold and sales made trickles to the school to pay fees for that particular child. We found this as a very interesting project that can really benefit Boston School children. Out of this, kids and their families can make their own money to pay their school fees and we can use the profit to boost the projects self-reliance. From the knowledge acquired from the training we are ready to start the project and we only need seed funds to kick start it.

During the training we got opportunity to share experiences of how we started B.C.C . The ups and downs that we have passed through and the level we have reached today. I shared with them how we feed children from 1 acre vegetable garden and selling surplus venges to the community of Matopeni to make some money. I also told them about water project. That water is like gold and when you have more than enough you can still sell to the community to get some income. What we do in Matopeni really motivated so many people. David and Gabriel were moved by the idea and during the last day they invited me to share my experiences through URDT a local Radio station at Kagadi, so that many people can learn how to make profits using their pieces of land. The land within the environ of Kagadi and Rugashali is still virgin with full of fertility and yet it’s unused. People there can grow all kinds of crops and it will do very well. They also have ready market within the neighbourhood and also they can export their farm produce across to Kenya especially the yams and traditional vegetables. Kenyans love yams very much and are ready to buy. Also water, most people buy water including Gabriel who spend not less than US$5 per day the same as his neighbors and this can be a catch for him should he drill a well.

From Rugashali we traveled to David’s project in the Western part of Uganda. We realized that David is far much ahead of us where by he has vocational skills training centre for the children coming to the centre. They get orders to make sweaters for other schools around out of this they get income. He also has a health centre where mothers come to get babies and sick people within Suubi village are treated hence maintaining the health of people and getting an income at the same time. We visited some homes where hens are kept just to see practically how the chicks are kept and maintained and this really motivated us a lot to start our own project. David also has Elite backpackers business located in Masaka. It’s more of his family business and he donates 20% of the profit to sustain Suubi centre project and health center. We got encouraged with what David is doing to his community. How wish we also get our vocational skill training centre as well as Heath centre.

With much thanks,
Stephen

Governmental scholarship for one of our students

We are delightful that one of our top candidate, namely Melvin (sponsored by our Hungarian friends) was recognized by the Government of Kenya through the wife of the Deputy President as she saw her story on the daily locals newspaper and felt touched. Calls were made and they were able to locate us. The head teacher was asked to go with Melvin to her residential state lodge in Karen to meet her. Boston story touched everyone. Some ladies were even in tears and could not imagine such things happen in our societies. The gap between the rich and the poor here in Kenya is very big.

Melvin was therefore sponsored to join the national school Butere Girls High School which the wife of the deputy president attended when she was a girl of Melvin’s age.

The wife of the Deputy President promised to visit Boston Schools one of these days.
One of the ladies who has also seen Boston in Butere has acknowledged that Boston is a good disciplined institution and she had no doubt that such minds can be produced from the place.

 

Construction works are undergoing in BHS

Since Boston High School was opened in 2012 there was no appropriate kitchen where meals for boarding students could be prepared in a proper way. We only had a little shed where rain dropped in through the roof (as you can see on the first pictures). Such circumstances did not make it easy to feed the 150 boarders we.

Fortunately we recently have received funds from Holland for building a kitchen and a perimeter wall around the girls’ hostel. Due to the heavy rains caused by El Nino, construction work – especially that of the perimeter wall – was a very difficult job. There were floods all around the compound that made it very difficult to start building. However finally we could manage to start the work and we nicely proceed as you can see in the latest pictures. We hope to finish the construction works as soon as we receive the latest parts of the support from our Dutch friends. We cannot be grateful enough for this support that makes it fulfil our dream to offer quality education to needy kids.

 

Pictures of the constructions:

Best KCPE results in Boston

Boston Schools Matopeni class 8 pupils got the best results in the larger, Nairobi East province – and much above the country average – for KCPE (primary school final exams) in 2015.

All the 21 kids sitting for the exam passed it successfully (i.e. got more than 250 scores from 500): the best results were 406 (two pupils) and the lowest result was 270.

Sad news is however that Michael Odhiambo who is one of the kids with the best (406) results has no sponsor thus may not proceed with his studies and start high school. If you wish to help Michael please contact us.

We congratulate all the pupils and their teachers for this fantastic job!  We are very proud of you!

Prayer Day for Candidates

On the 9th of October we held prayers for High School candidates. In the congregation were parents, guardians, teachers, subordinate staff and board members of Boston Centre.

We strongly believe that it is through prayer that everything will run smooth, before, during and even after the exams. Prayer is our pillar for what will happen in future for our candidates.

Some candidates are hopeful that they will pass the exams to attain grades to take them to a university but how they will afford university fees is a nightmare to many as they are poor. They are not sure what will follow or how they will be should they fail to go to University due to lack of fees and that is why prayers were very important to give them hope of good things coming their way. Hope of seeing all barriers of reaching their goal being broken after exams even when we exactly know that there is very little we can do to help them financially. We believe that God is rich enough with silver and gold and provides to those who lack and opens the door for those seek him to dine with them. The Bible reading come from the book of Philippians 4:13 that “I shall do all things through Christ that strengthens me”.

High School examination (K.C.S.E) starts on 15th October 2015 and will end on the 5th November 2015.
While that for primary school starts on 9th November 2015 and ends on 12th day same month.

In the pictures you will see a very powerful message written by one of the candidates, Alex Silar saying that “Boston High School The pride of Nairobi”.
That is where we are heading to, being the best school in Nairobi and as Nairobi being the capital city we shall be the best school in Kenya.

God bless you even as we see the kids go through the exams!

 

Update Report of 7 Aug 2015

Update report from Laurence Webb, the representative of Rotary Australia’s Kenyan Kinship program, who spent 3 weeks in Boston schools, sleeping and living in the high school together with the kids.

„The primary school had the best results of the 48 SCHOOLS IN THE AREA. They have improved every year, and the mid-year exam results show yet more improvement.  I took Daniel the headmaster and his 13 teachers to Mombasa as I promised 5 years ago I would. They are a stable and motivated team.

The irrigated vegetable garden is a big success and they even sell excess food.

The new rescue home built by Wings of support from Holland above the pre-primary school is a big improvement.  They now have e-learning from a TV and DVD player and we spent a few evenings watching movies. They seemed like a big happy family and won my heart.

It is Africa, so nothing works quite as you expect, but you can be sure your sponsorship is paying for the school items they need, a feeding program and a really good education

What your sponsorship has enabled is the best education comes from the poorest slum in the area.

At least the World Bank have just put sewerage in!


Onto the secondary school

The raising of the security wall is complete from our fundraiser in March, thanks to sponsors Matt, David and Mirinda who took part. The parents are now satisfied about the safety of their children and so am I. 42 girls board at the secondary school and 42 boys board 50 yards away at the hostel. To my surprise the boarding program is really popular with parents and the children.

I slept at the school. Every morning they rise at 4.30 at their own choice.  At 4.55 there was a rumbling like a heard of wildebeest as the boys arrive. At 5am they are all studying, as they do from 7 to 9pm, then the boys go home.

The boys are respectful and well behaved even when they don’t know I am there, I am really impressed.  The girls are delightful, competing to wash my clothes and asking about the volunteers from previous visits.

I am so proud of them, and their dedication and determination to succeed, it makes it all worthwhile.

The practice exam results indicate that half of the 31 GRADUATING students will get the A’s and B’s needed to get a government loan for university, against a national average of 15%

So again, your sponsorship is enabling the best education for the poorest children. I took the form 4 children to university to inspire them. It is a really nice place with a great lifestyle.

So this is still a new school, and it has growing pains, yet it is a success way beyond our dreams of 5 years ago.

When I go back in July next year with volunteers I expect 15 CHILDREN to have government sponsored places in university and for their sponsors, their job is done. And their example will change the slum forever.

In the next update I will explain how Ildiko, who has supported the school for 10 YEARS SINCE IT WAS A TIN SHED, and Moni, who just spent 2 months there and returns in September are helping to improve the sponsorship program…”

Laurence Webb

Container with donated goods arrived

On Friday we received a 20 feet container full of useful things like blinds, smart boards, bicycles, cloth and many more. All goods are donations from our Australian partners Kenyan Kinship and Rotary Club.
This donation really helps us in our battle to wipe out illiteracy, poverty and despair in our community.

On behalf of our community members in Matopeni slum and also the Boston schools’ staff and students we would like to thank to all the team who collected all these donations and coordinated – and financed – its transfer to our school compound.