"It's a beautiful school. Well done African Promise!"
Emily Kituri, Area Education Officer
“None of us ever thought the school would be built to this standard.”
Mercy Marigo, former volunteer teacher at Ngambenyi
The school sits in a vast expanse of farmland a couple of kilometres away from the foothills of Mt Kasigau. It was founded by the local community in 2007 but they had struggled to build a very basic facility by the time it became our seventh partner school in 2015. Our work at Ngambenyi since then has transformed the school beyond recognition and in 2018 it was recognised as a ‘model’ school by the local government.
Ngambenyi became our seventh partner school in June 2015 when work started on a major £110,000 project to redevelop the entire school site and complete the work that the community had started. Over the course of the next 18 months of building work no part of the existing school was left untouched as we set about creating a school that has ultimately set a new standard for our school redevelopments.
Since completion of the initial redevelopment phase we have continued to make improvements to the school and we have now invested around £125,000 in facilities and infrastructure at the school.
A block of half built classrooms, constructed by the parents and community.
The kitchen-cum-bike shed!
A block of toilets.
Inside a classroom. Notice the dirt floor, unrendered walls and ‘windows’.
The headteachers office!
Inside another classroom, again with dirt floors, unrendered walls and gaping holes in the walls where there should be windows.
The staff toilets.
The main reception area of the school provides a welcoming entrance to the school for staff, pupils and visitors alike.
The landscaped central courtyard and assembly ground is surrounded on all side by buildings and is in stark contrast to the dustbowl that used to be here.
The nursery school and playground provide a fantastic learning and development environment for the school’s youngest pupils.
The school now has 60,000 litres of rainwater storage capacity but we aim to increase this.
Plans for the future
Despite all the work that has been undertaken at Ngambenyi there is still more that we would like to do in the future once funding is available, including the construction of on-site accommodation for teachers and staff, expansion of rainwater storage capacity and fencing of the school perimeter to allow for the establishment of a formal kitchen garden and fruit plantation.
We would like to thank Hazel’s Footprints Trust for funding the redevelopment of Ngambenyi and for providing on-going support since its completion.
In 2013 we were approached by the Trust as they were looking for an on-the-ground partner to help them build a school. Having previously funded smaller projects at our other partner schools they recognised our expertise and reputation in this area and asked us to identify a school that was in need of significant investment. That school was Ngambenyi.
In total, the Trust donated £110,000 to fund the capital works and have given £5,000 annually since 2018 to contribute towards the day-to-day running costs of the school including the lunch programme, staff salaries and on-going maintenance.
Hazel’s Footprints was established in 2004 in memory of Hazel Scott Aiton whose death in a car accident that year left an unfillable hole in the lives of everybody who knew and loved her. In 2002, Hazel had spent a challenging and rewarding Gap Year in Namibia teaching at the Otjikondo Village School. Whilst there, she saw first-hand what an enormous difference dedicated people can make to the lives of others. She dreamed of building a school for disadvantaged children and we are delighted to have played a part in making that dream a reality.