Birhan School is a chapter that closes painfully for Mediterranean.
The factors that led to the decision to suspend aid to the school could have been amended by the local partner but there was clearly no intent to do so for reasons that are beyond our understanding.
This sad outcome has one good part and that is that the school will not close down, and so we leave the children a furnished school with more infrastructure and services than when we found it. Now the parents of each child will have to pay 20birrs (1€) a month for the teachers. About 50 children we believe, have left the school as they can not pay. So even amongst the poorest there are still classes.
We are opening another line of collaboration, this time it is with the Fitawrari school in Akaki, the school where the children that graduate from Abugida go to.
We have built toilets for the girls and we are paving the access to the school which becomes impenetrable in the rainy season. We will also be providing 1750€ of supplies to establish a kindergarten in the school. The condition and standard of our graduates from Abugida has made the Fitawrari administration want to include a kindergarten to their school. We hope that more public schools follow his example.
We will also pay the salaries of two teachers and the supplies needed to help 50 older children, who have never before had the opportunity to go to school, catch up so that they can join the school and have a future. Most of these children had to work from an early age and need this extra tuition so as to be able to join the system. We estimate they will need six months to reach the level and we have dedicated 710€ to cover the costs and salaries.
The educational levels are divided in to course, second, third, fourth etc. The level/course you leave school at conditions your future. The more years you stay in school the better your job options. Without some help it is difficult to get an education, without an education one remains for ever in the ignorance-poverty cycle. And that is why these older children represent the future, the hope for change.
Unlike in the first world, in Ethiopia all children want to go to school.