As we commemorate the Day of the African Child for 2016, ActionAid Zimbabwe remains committed to “Protecting all children’s rights”.
In partnership with local authorities in Saunyama in Nyanga District, Manicaland Province, Ministry of Education, Sports and Culture, communities and Magarati Primary School parents and pupils, ActionAid unveiled two classroom blocks to benefit 130 pupils who were learning under a shade for 12 years.
Located along a 30 kilometres dust road north-west of Nyanga (East of Zimbabwe), Ward 18 under Chief Saunyama, Magarati Primary School was frequently referred to as masaki (sacks), mamvemve (torn items) to marengenya (shrivelled items) due to its poor infrastructure in which pupils were taking lessons from.
Magarati Primary School pupils were taking lessons under a shade made of grass, bricks and dagga roughly put together to make a classroom. The chalkboard on one of the walls was the only evidence that would make a passer-by wonder if it was a classroom during the school’s “tattered” state.
A mist of cloud could be seen from a distance as the pupils danced the whole day in celebration of the opening of the classrooms blocks recently. The blocks were constructed through assistance from Simukai Child Protection in partnership with ActionAid.
Supa Mandiwannzira, member of the National Assembly for Nyanga South and Minister of Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services, officially opened the two classroom blocks recently and ended the long struggle where students had to have their lessons in a ramshackle shade.
Simukai Child Protection director, Barbra Matsanga saluted the Magarati community for its dedication to duty which resulted in the completion of the project. While ActionAid supported the school with cement and roofing material, the community supplied the bricks.
“I thank you very much for working hard with the few resources you have. Without you, construction of this school would have been very difficult. May you continue developing this infrastructure from where we have left it. The classrooms are still to be furnished,” she said.
Magarati Primary School is a satellite school to Tamunesa Primary School which is about 4km away. ActionAid Zimbabwe in partnership with Simukai Child Protection also donated stationery and balls for extracurricular activities for the school.
Over 30 000 children countrywide have benefitted from ActionAid Zimbabwe and partner interventions which have included water and sanitation, sexual reproductive health awareness training, support in establishing structures such as junior school development committees, child protection committees, junior MPs and councillors, payment of school fees, classroom construction and blair toilet construction.