St Agness Church Primary School is situated in a rural area about two hours drive from Ndola. There are about 360 children who attend, from Grades 1 to 7. At present they only have 4 classrooms of which two are extremely small, walls unplastered with only openings for doors and windows. The pupils have to carry their desks and benches across the school yard to the larger classrooms every day for safe storage over night. They have very few text books and other school resources. The facilities at St Agness school was quite a contrast to the 1st school that Hands of Compassion had been supporting over the years. They only had 2 pupil toilets, 1 for boys and 1 for girls so their urgent need was to have an additional toilet block.
In addition they need help in completing a two classroom block which at present is only at window height.
Hands of Compassion promised to help them, and have sent a first instalment to enable them to start digging the foundations for the pupil toilet block.
There are increasing numbers of children who are not going to school, so the Ministry of Education have persuaded all schools to increase their intake to accommodate more pupils in school. Hands of Compassion School now has 600 pupils.
Miriam Kalunga, 10 years old, is chosen as the one out of 600 pupils who made the best performance in the Hands of Compassion School. She was presented an Achievement Award medal and certificate, as well as a school bag and Tshirt.
Abbishy was a former pupil at the school in Chipulukusu. Abbishy’s father died when he was very young and his mother died when he was 12 years old, leaving Abbishy to be looked after by his older brother. It was very tough for him, leaving his home with just one small plastic bag, no blanket or bedding.
There are many children who live in similar circumstances, no bed to sleep on, just the floor or an old chair, sharing a blanket with one’s brother. Coming home from school but having no good light to do homework, just a paraffin lamp or candle. Yet despite these tough conditions, Abbishy worked hard and is now studying to be a Teacher at College, completing in December 2018, when he hopes to become a Teacher at Secondary school specialising in Mathematics and Agricultural Science.
Paul Sambwa, former pupil at Hands of Compassion School, has passed his University examinations in Biomedical Science at the end of his 3rd year. Paul now moves onto a Masters Degree course leading to qualification as a Doctor. We are very proud of Paul and his achievement, and wish him well.
Following changes in the Zambian Ministry of Education regulations, the status of Hands of Compassion school has now become a Community school.
This means that the objectives of the UK Trust Deed need to be refined and as a result, expand to include supporting other educational projects. A decision has been made by Trustees and supported by many donors, to now start the process of implementing these changes.
Moses Mwewe, 11 years old in Grade 3 class was chosen as the best pupil in the whole school to have made the most progress during 2016. Moses was presented with an Achievement Award, a medal saying Well done, a pair of school shoes, a school bag, a T shirt and a Certificate. His class friends sang to celebrate the occasion, accompanied by Moses’ mother who danced, showing her happiness and proud that her son had done so well. January 2017
In December we received news that all 41 of our Grade 7 students took and PASSED the end of Primary School examinations. That is a tremendous result.
18 of these students, because of their high pass mark, have been automatically awarded a place at Kanseneshi High School.
It is always a privilege to see the hard-work that our students put into their education throughout their time at Hands of Compassion School, knowing that they, through your generosity in supporting the school, can make their dreams a reality. By offering primary education to these students we give them a hope for the future.
The prominence of the new dininghall is amazing. In just over a year we have gone from Chicken Shed to Dining Hall. With space to seat a third of the school each day for lunch, there is such excitement as the Dining Hall is in use.
Thank you to everyone who made this project viable. We hope to bring you some photographs soon of the building inside.
Four houses in the community were identified as in great need of roofing sheets. They only had polythene, a few wooden poles and odd pieces of rusty iron sheets that had numerous holes in. We were able to give them some iron sheets that were still usable, to help protect their houses during the rains. One example was Ruth who has 2 of her 4 children attending Hands of Compassion School. Their father abandoned them shortly after her youngest child, now 2 years old. Ruth has to try and manage on her own. The roof of her house was very bad, we took 20 iron sheets on a wheelbarrow to her home – she was so pleased.