FOETSIE! Schoolmaterials

On 25th and 29th October 2013, we venture out to three different schools to deliver schoolmaterials to students and teachers. The materials we handed out were a schoolbag for students (filled with two workbooks and a pouch with 5 pencils and a sharpener) and a pouch for teachers (filled with 2 red and 2 blue pens, scissors, 2 pencils and a pencil sharpener). The bags and cases are designed here and madel by local businesses to keep costs as low as possible and to stimulate the local economy a bit.

At first glance, the distribution of a school bag with materials may not create so many chances for children, but if you look a bit further you will see that this has impact. For many parents, the purchase of these materials is yet again an added expense, and if you have just a little, then every one Naira counts! By handing out the workbooks and pencils we actually ensure that students can continue to attend classes and that they will not be sent home because they have no materials. In addition, handing out materials works as an incentive for children who do not go to school, to go to school.

For teachers, the materials are a welcome gift and it works as an incentive to continue with the work they do. We have chosen the schools we visited, based on previous visits. We looked at how schools are performing and they are involved in the development of education in their own school.

 

The schools we visited were two regular primary schools (Kabba Owode and Gatta) and the Special Needs School in Ilorin. We had two great days with lots of happy children and teachers who gratefully recieved the materials and lots of people from the community who came to thank us for the materials. It was very nice to see how happy the children are when they recieve a school bag with a few materials and how truly grateful they are when someone gives them something. Of course we have told everyone that it is not us who donate the materials, but that we are handing them out in the name of all the generous donors.

The visit to the Special Needs School was for us a very nice and special experience. This, of course, because our educational hearts still beats in this type of education. We have agreed with the teachers of the Special Needs School that we will try to come by more often in the future. Not only to share materials but also to help the school and the teachers in the form of classroom observations, workshops or training sessions.

 

Playground in Moshe Gada

At the end of October, beginning of November, we visited Kaiama again to see the development of the dormitory and to visit the carpenter to see how far he got on with the playground materials, bunkbeds and cupboards.

The dormitory is almost finished, all the walls are plastred and the roof is completely covered. In the next 2 weeks all walls will be painted and the electricity and water will be connected to the house. 

The carpenter finished the playground materials and is ready to deliver and install them as soon as possible. Great, how about Friday 2nd of November??

                          

All said and done, Friday 2nd of November was the big day. The installation of the Mochi Gada playground. The carpenter started early in the morning to start the installation. When we arrived in the afternoon he finished almost all the materials already. Together with the SBMC and the communityleaders we went round all the materials to explain them about the use and maintanence of the materials. Following that we had a small talk about the special donation Miranda's former Primary school "de Schelf" from the Netherlands did to Foetsie Foundation. After that, it was time for words of appreciation from the SBMC and the community. So once again; Primary school "de Schelf" from the Netherlands, many many thanks to all of you for your generous donation! Aside the playground in Mochi Gada we can donate so much more to other schools in Kwara State, Nigeria.

                                                        

After the talk with the SBMC it was time for the children to explore the playground materials. What a great experience that was!! All the children wanted to play and try out the materials at the same time. We guided the children a little bit in how to organise in taking turns, but still most of them were a little bit overwhelmed with all the different materials. The teachers suggested for the first couple of weeks to go outside during break with only 2 classes at a time to let the children get used to all the material. Ofcourse, we could only encourage that idea!!!

                     

In 3 weeks time, when the house is completely finished, we will visit the school again to deliver the bunkbeds and cupboards. We are looking forward to see the final result, with nice painted walls and beds for the pupils to sleep in. After that it will be ready for the children and teachers to live in!! We hope that it will be a great experience for the children and it will improve their development in the school and will make their times after school a litlle bit more fun!

Bunk beds for Moshe Gada

Finally it’s going to happen!!! Soon they will start building the dormitory in Moshi Gada. Due to some technical challenges and some challenges with the community the start of constructing the building was delayed. Fortunately the community has now decided to support the project and will donate sand and water which we need for the construction. ESSPIN expect the communities to support the project by donating materials. In this way ESSPIN believes that the community will be more involved in the project which helps them to release the children from any work they do and allow them to go to school. In some communities they need more encouragement than in the other.

In the second week of September they will start building the dormitory. Most of the time, after starting a project, it will be finished in no time. So the moment has come for Foetsie Foundation to start acting on the donation of the bunk beds and lockers for the pupils. If all goes according to plan the house will have two big rooms, 1 for boys and 1 for girls. Each room will provide 6 bunk beds for 12 pupils. Every room will also have 2 locked cupboards for pupils to keep their belongings in. Foetsie Foundation wants to donate these bunk beds and cupboards. The only way of making this happen is through your generous donations.

Would you , as a friend of Foetsie Foundation, want to be co responsible for a good night sleep for these pupils, please act now and donate for one of the bunk beds. A bunk bed including mattress and sheets for 2 pupils will cost 100 euro. The beds will be made by a local carpenter. For the foundation the use of local labour is one of the key priorities in providing materials. By using the local workers we strengthen the system in providing more income which allows more children to go to school.

Donating money for only half a bunk bed is of course also more than welcome!!

So........please donate a place to sleep for 2 pupils for only 100 euro’s or a locked cupboard for only 90 euro’s.

On the donated bunk beds we will attach a metal sign that shows, not only the Foetsie logo, but also the name of the person who donated the bunk bed.

Would you like to support Foetsie Foundation in realising this project? Then go to our ´Friends` page. Please mention your name and where you want us to spend your donation on when you donate into our account. Thanks a lot!!!

J.O.E.P.

Several years ago, when we were both teachers at “De Blije Gaarde”, we once had a seminar on the educational climate in the classroom. How do you deal with students, how do you build a good relationship with your students and what can you do on a daily basis to keep that relationship work? That were pretty much the questions that were treated that day. At the end of the day all participants were presented a small calender, with on each page a little tip or assignment, in relation to educational practice, which the could work on that day: The Pedagogical Climate Calendar. We both have used the calendar for years. One time intensive than other times, but the Pedagogical Climate Calendar was always present in the classroom and was therefore a simple tool ever to make us conscious again of our own actions.

Now, several years later, we are here in Nigeria to develop and support the education sector. When we just arrived in Nigeria, we soon realized that the teachers here are really not concerned with educational practice and building a relationship with students. The truth is that many teachers are not or poorly trained, most teachers are happy if they have survived the day and often the students are happy if they survived the school day without receiving some blows from the teacher. I had to think back to the Pedagogical Climate Calendar that we had used in our classes and soon I realized that such a calendar could be a simple tool to support teachers. To see if it was possible to translate the calendar and use it here, I contacted Joep Willemsen from Office of Learning Assistance Breda to ask permission to translate and use the calendar.

Joep was very excited and wanted to know more about the work we do here and how we can use the calendars. After some emails back and forth, Joep said he wanted to help us. He was already working on an English version and even wanted to adjust the calendar to connect it a little better with the Nigerian education. After the translation was done, Joep informed us that he would like to sponsor a few calendars and print them for us. Luckily for us we would soon come to the Netherlands, so we could come and collect them at his office.

so we went to Joep’s office to collect the calendars and took them to Nigeria and shared with a group of National Volunteers who, without any educational background, teach groups up to 80 students. During the training we have given to these volunteers, we slowly introduced the calendar. The first training the Volunteers made a weekly calendar (every day of the week a point, where they could work themself) and during the second training we distributed and explained the Educational Climate Calendar (each day of the month a tip or a assignment to work on). The National Volunteers were very happy and promised to use the calendars in the classroom. We actually cannot wait for the next training we going to do with them. We are very curious about their experiences.

If you want to know more about the pedagogical Climate Calendar (especially for all the teachers), you can check out their website: www.joep.co

Introduction with the children of moshi gada

On Thursday, May 9th ,we went for the second time to visit Moshi Gada Primary School. This time to meet the children. During our first visit, in February, the children were not in school because of a training for the teachers.

Together with the children we have viewed the scale model of the house and talked about what the children like about the new house. We also made drawings of the activities they would like to do after school when the house will be ready. Here you can see some drawings the children made.

In a few weeks, ESSPIN hopes to start with the construction of the house, so that children and teachers can move from the classroom to the new home as soon as possible. When construction is in progress, we will plan further visits to orient us on the local labor market and make agreements with a carpenter, welder or other specialists. Currently we have received many donations for the bunk beds, mattresses, bedding and cabinets. When we have made agreements with the local carpenter, welder or other specialists we can give a better indication of what else is needed.

OBS De Schelf in 's-Gravendeel has promised to donate a part of the revenue of the Part of the proceeds of their charity benefit in June to the children of the school in Moshi Gada. Maybe we can even make it possible to get a nice outdoor playground.

If you would like to make a donation for the pupils home in Moshi Gda, please take a look at our “Friends” page to see how to make donations.

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