BuildOn International celebrates building 300 school blocks,in Malaiw:  Bails out neglected Kasungu children

A construction based Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) BuildOn International on Friday celebrated building 300 school blocks since it started operating in Malawi since  1993.

Some of the school blocks at Madzidzi Primary School

The celebrations were held with a grand opening and handing over of  two school blocks worth K44 million to Madzidzi Primary School in Kasungu District.

The gesture has provided hope of better learning environment to students in Traditional Authority (T/A) Nyaza, who used to learn in shacks.

Primary education adviser (PEA) for Chaima Education Zone, Anne Chagwira, hailed BuildOn International for providing permanent structures to the institution.

“This is a dream come true for us. Children has many difficulties when accessing education mainly during the rainy season because were disrupted, and sometimes early closure of the school.

“We are very thankful for what BuildOn is doing in promoting quality education in our district and country through building permanent structures in primary schools. This is something commendable,” she said.

Group village head Chiundira said learners in his village have been assisted as they used to walk long distances to access better schools elsewhere.

“We are very excited and pleased with the development. Our children were travelling 14 kilometres to and from school just because this school had no good classrooms,” he said.

The 300 school blocks have been built in the six different districts of Phalombe, Mwanza, Neno, Balaka, Blantyre and Kasungu.

In Kasungu district, BuildOn has constructed 224 School Blocks in 143 different schools accounting for approximately 20 percent of all permanent classrooms in the district.

BuildOn International country director Robert Loughlin urged government to complement their efforts by ensuring provision of quality education services in the schools.

“There are a lot of things needed in these primary schools as the quality of education does not only come from these buildings we erect,” Loughlin said.

He said BuildOn uses a unique methodology in order to construct its building, before any work commences, the receiving community must agree to produce community contributions in the form of bricks, river sand, concrete Stone Aggregate and must agree to provide volunteers 30 per day for the lifecycle of the project.

BuildOn International gets funding from well-wishers, including American pop singer Madonna.

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Let us hope that teacher training is keeping pace with these structural developments. A good education is as dependent of the quality of the teaching as it is on the physical structures of the school buildings themselves, perhaps more so.

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