Visits to the Ololosokwan Primary School
July and August 2008
Asilia’s Suyan Camp moves into two locations during its ten month operating season. From December- April (our green season) it is sited just outside the Ngrongoro Conservation Area near the village of Piaya. From June through to November this small camp of only 6 tents operates just outside the Serengeti’s Klein’s gate. In both locations guests can walk, night drive and spend quality time with the Maasai villagers. One of the more interesting and enjoyable things to do out of Suyan is to visit the local schools.
During July and August of 2008, with my safari guests, I visited the Ololosokwan Primary School on a number of occasions. 900 kids are crammed into a few classrooms and most teachers have up to 90 children to a class. With almost no resources these teachers try their hardest to at least give the children a chance at some sort of education and over the past 10 years this school has grown from 175 kids that were mostly male to today’s nearly 50-50 split between boys and girls. This is a major achievement and deserves praise. The safari industry has helped with 4 camps now providing substantial funds for village development projects which include this lively and dynamic school. Classroom construction, teacher accommodation, text book and stationary supplies have been aided by the income from safari camps.
Such joy from a few bubbles
Meeting the teachers
The kids love to talk with guests
and Sam joins the class
Lunch is served
Suyan Camp now generates more funds than all the others and Asilia’s Honey Guide Foundation(external link) can take a lot of the credit for organizing these Community Based Conservation projects (CBCP’s). Many guests are so taken by the children and the needs of the school that they want to contribute in some way or other. Having done a fair share of organizing donations to local schools, I know how complex this can all be and the many things that can go wrong. Channeling donations through The Honey Guide Foundation has simplified such things and a recent donation of ten thousand US dollars by one of my safari guests will go a long way to relieving some of the constant cost burdens the school suffers. This donation pays for a full year’s stationary needs and the much needed 100 new school desks to alleviate the problem of 3-4 kids sitting at one desk!
The children are fed at the school as well and this lifts a burden for the poorer families. Many of these well behaved and enthusiastic children walk 5-10 miles a day to get to school and I am humbled by their desire to learn every time I visit. They just deserve better. No Western child should complain about their school once they have visited such a place! Certainly it is one of the greatest gifts a parent can give their child - to travel on safari and visit such a school. Many of the funds generated and raised overseas for the schools of Africa get wasted; too many funds don’t reach the kids and improve their lot. The Honey Guide Foundation is working on that and will ensure that the ten thousand dollars Geoffrey (my guest) donated will get spent on exactly the things the head teacher asked for. Well done Geoffrey. Maybe some more paintings will appear on the classroom walls!
Make someone’s day today- blow them a bubble!