The last few months have been fast and furious for The Nobelity Project :
January we wrapped our 5 year planting initiative in Bastrop State Park with Applied Materials. Just shy of the 2 million tree goal, professionals, volunteers and students have planted 1.8 million Loblolly saplings since the devastating fires. Next time you camp or visit the park, be sure to thank the Rangers for coordinating this massive reforestation project. And we thank Applied Materials Foundation for supporting our educational outreach that connected 1000's of area high school students to the effort and impact of this program.
February is Feed the Peace Awards month, and we had a record breaking gala at The Four Seasons Austin. Incredibly generous donors raised over half a million dollars to fund this year's programming. We are grateful, and we are very excited to continue bridging gaps in education around the world.
March found Turk in Kenya for a whirlwind tour of school construction sites and student presentations. If you haven't checked our Facebook page lately, be sure to scroll through the videos and photo galleries that he shared from this month's journey. Even in the depth of the drought, students are working hard.
April will take us to Honduras to check on the progress of Roatán Island students and the Sand Castle Library Bookmobile: a converted school bus -made- traveling library.
No sooner will he land stateside, Turk will return to East Africa, this time with our executive director and several key supporters. This visit is especially exciting as it includes a Leadership Academy for top-scoring Kenyan scholars from the 4 high schools where we work! This 3 day seminar will provide students with a fun mix of professional and social interactions to prepare them for real-world engagement, encourage critical and creative thinking, and cultivate leadership skills within their community. Training includes the introduction of the ARES, the digital libraries we will be installing in their schools--they will be the ambassadors of this great learning tool.
Until then, here are some progress notes on schools this week:
Mutaki Primary: 8th Grade students will take KCPE for the first time this year!
Kitchen is finished but still needs stoves
Library is seeking tables and librarian training
Additional water tank and gutters on new building (Well Aware)
Nthani Primary: 480 students
This is a neighboring school to Mutaki that needs water. Mutunga Muindi, their headteacher, oversees 13 teachers
A long row of 8 old classrooms - 4 with good walls and foundations but needs new metal on the roof and some rebuilding of the rafters to install gutters and a UV system
Muthuini Primary: 230 students plus 57 in ECD
The district intends to convert one classroom into a computer lab, which means the campus will be one classroom short
plus MUTHUINI LIBRARY Grand Opening should be spectacular! The community has invited some high profile folks to the ribbon cutting, and the US funders will be attending - stay tuned!
Mwangaza Preschool underway: Highest scoring primary in the district!
Primary has 550 students plus 50 more in ECD; the preschool has three classes. Lots of young kids from community
Plant two big trees to shade front yard and furniture for preschool
Bellvue Preschool and Primary:
Parents dug trenches for the preschool. 33 students with varied problems enrolled in a tiny special-needs classroom. Their principal has requested $1,000 for list of education needs there. This campus has grown since The Nobelity Project first visited:
2015: 202 students
2016: 205 students
2017: 210 students
More text book funds, a computer and printer, and a fence for tree-planting
Mweiga Primary: New landscaping looks great!
577 students, double stream for every grade plus 75 ECD, plus 18 special needs (overall scores are lower when factoring special needs students)
The Nobelity Project is building an assembly/dining hall!
PRIORITIES: Metal roof sheets
Magunda Primary and ECD: Our good friend Kagiri is alum!
400 students in primary and ECD - good average scores
As part of our Arts & Athletics Programming, The Nobelity Project is helping cover transportation and food for 20 students to the Music and Dance Country Competition Festival in Nyeri
This campus currently has three computers, they need four more
Ol Moran Secondary and Primary Schools
17 teachers, 8 support staff, approx 400 students plus 30 in special needs
Underway: Completion of 8 classroom that include library and computer lab. Next up: Library books, and ARES and new computers. and in partnership with Well Aware a new borehole for water for the school, the primary school next door and with a community use point.
Alamach: 63 kids in preschool - doing well!
The Nobelity Project helped send teachers to college in August; no school this year - there is a break before they return
Kanyoni Preschool: 33 little ones, 30 students in the 'big kid' class :)
Nearby Mt. Kenya Hotel is looking to build a new kitchen for this campus! The Nobelity Project hopes to install a new playground, complete with a Merry Go Round.
New stone classroom in place of wooden one
A huge multi-million dollar project, The Nobelity Project hopes to help tell the story of their conservation intiatives
Daaba Primary: 250 students enrolled - kids look well.
The drought is severe: probably more than a thousand people gone from areas leading to Daaba - livestock, people, houses - vanished. But other families have stayed at Daaba and Daaba Ju. The Daaba Ju well sits on a barren hilltop and pumps a LOT of water. World Food Program and government are providing food support.
Despite their dire situation, students are presenting good scores. Nine students have gone on to Secondary, and seven have pursued craft & trade studies at Polytechnic!
There are now laptops in the classroom - just arrived, need training.
The big tank at the well burst - Well Aware will replace!
Check back in May for more! In the meantime, we'll continue to post the latest and greatest on The Nobelity Project Facebook page.
Fun Fact: The Nobelity Project has built over 18 preschools!
And more! Thank you!