Friday, June 24, 2016

Project progress on all fronts

It's now about 6 months since we were notified that we had received approval of our Rotary Foundation and Government of Canada grant applications.  We are well on our way with the project.

Computer Labs:
The 42 Aleutia computers for the two secondary school computer labs have arrived safely in Nairobi and are now at Stonehouse (the Nairobi distributor for Aleutia computers).  Stonehouse has been installing smaller computer labs for 45 primary schools in Kenya under a contract with Safaricom (Kenya's major cell phone company).  Stonehouse is fabricating desk/benches for our labs and will be installing these along with the computers and solar panels/batteries in mid-July.

In conjunction with the computer installation, we will be arranging for the installation of satellite service for the two labs so that the teachers & students can be connected to the internet.  Our partner, Kenya Connect, regularly conducts joint classes linked by satellite between the 55 schools that they currently support and schools in the USA.  We will be working to get Kyaithani Secondary and Lower Yatta Secondary schools, our two schools with the new computer labs, included in this network.

In mid-August James and Patrick from Kenya Connect in Wamunyu Kenya will be conducting a week long computer training and computer lab orientation session for the secondary school teachers of Kyaithani and Lower Yatta schools.

Solar Light rent-to-own Program:
Sample lights are now available for the teachers and parents at the 7 schools in the Kyaithani Cluster to try.

Sun King Pico solar lights will be made available for each student, at a cost of about 50 cents per month for 24 months.  Sun King Pro All-Night solar lights (with cell phone charger) will be made available for each teacher, at a cost of about $1.25 per month for 24 months.

This monthly cost is much lower that the current cost of paraffin that parents and teachers are spending for the only current source of lighting in this area.

We are expecting that by the end of July we will have lists of the students and parents who have committed to the solar light program and hopefully have the lights available for the start of the school term at the beginning of September.

Primary School Teacher Online Training:
Our project intends to pay for the enrollment of 70 primary school teachers from the 5 primary schools within the Kyaithani Cluster of schools.  Four teachers from each of the 5 schools will be enrolled later this fall for the online KICD (Kenya Institute for Curriculum Development) PTO (Primary Teacher Orientation) 8 month certification course.  The remainder will take the course next year.

There currently is no electricity, and no computers, at these primary schools.  The teachers will take the online course using the new computer labs at the secondary schools.

Scholarship Program:
This is not a part of our global Grant project, but has been a project that we have supported for about 6 years.  The scholarship program is made possible by donations from individuals and Rotary clubs.  This year we have just provided 48 scholarships to 20 boys and 28 girls at Kyaithani Secondary and Lower Yatta Girls Secondary Schools.  Check out our scholarship blog for more information. .


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