A New Building for a New Year
The brand-new building for the second pre-school class (Front)
The back side of the new building, with beautiful Mt. Lifuwu in the background
Christmas and the holiday season has arrived full-tilt in Lifuwu and Malawi as a whole. Families are working particularly hard to prepare for an extra special day with their families. Christmas and New Year’s is an extra busy time indeed, as this is also when farmers are preparing the fields and planting next year’s crops. While the community is absorbed in the feverish preparation that this season entails, at help2kids, we have a little time to reflect on what we have accomplished in the community over the past year. While I am extremely proud of all our projects in Malawi, I would like to spend this blog describing some exciting changes at Tiyanjane Pre-School that came just in time for Christmas.
In the years that help2kids has been helping at Tiyanjane pre-school we have seen enrichment both in the curriculum presented to the young learners as well as to the facilities and services available. In the past 2 years alone, the site on which the preschool stands has developed into a 4 building campus! Beginning in 2005 with just one room and few supplies, the pre-school has blossomed, now including a dedicated “nursery” room and teacher for the youngest children, two class rooms for older “pre-school” students each with a dedicated teacher, and a kitchen used to prepare porridge for the daily feeding program.
Some of our nursery volunteers, Left to Right: Noemi, Nele, Ilaria
Our wonderfully and diversely talented help2kids volunteers have remained dedicated to improving the pre-school every step of the way. They are always there to lend a hand corralling the children into their classes, lead activities and songs, help the teachers develop rules and lessons, and when all else fails they are always there to play with the children and provide encouragement. Over the past two months our volunteers have gone above and beyond by helping to finish construction on the most recent addition to the Tiyanjane Campus: a new classroom building.
A portion of the group who made the new room look beautiful! Left to right:
Nele, Marlene, Amidu, Patson
After workers completed constructing, roofing, and plastering the new building, help2kids volunteers Anja, Marlene, Nele, Patrick, Raphael, Rebeka, and Noemi rolled up their sleeves and worked with our guards Patson and Amidu to paint the inside and outside walls of the new classroom. Not afraid to get her hands (or in this case, entire forearms) dirty, Rebeka looks forward to sporting the long-lasting blotches of paint on her limbs when she returns home, saying “I hope my Mom and Dad will like it!”
Agnes (Left) and Annie (Right) are two welcome additions to the Tiyanjane team
In addition to celebrating the new building, we are happy to welcome new teaching staff to Tiyanjane Pre-School: Agnes has been promoted from volunteer teacher to full time pre-school teacher to teach our youngest pupils in the nursery, and Annie has been hired to teach in the new building, accommodating our growing number of preschool level learners. Now each building has a teacher who can concentrate 100% on that particular class.
Tiyanjane Pre-School has long been one of our landmark projects here in Lifuwu, and in celebrating its continued success, we also give immeasurable gratitude to all of the benefactors, community partners, staff members, and of course help2kidsvolunteers who have been instrumental in Tiyanjane’s success. Many thanks to all for the lasting impact we make daily on these young lives. The service that we help Tiyanjane Pre-School provide is in the true spirit of Christmas, and it is with that that we wish you a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and a prosperous New Year!
Chris and the Malawi team
Annie doing a great job with her new class
Merry Christmas from Malawi