I was suitably impressed and inspired by the way Buturi’s children behaved towards their education. They are very young. They start their schooling from the age of 3 and must walk up to 5 miles each day, in blistering heat and dry, dusty conditions to reach the school. They often arrive without having had anything to eat and yet their eagerness to learn is very real and has to be witnessed. This is what inspired me the most; that they showed great resilience in turning up each day to the outdoor class of a dust-track under a tree without grumbling or complaining. It soon became clear that this very resilience and commitment to education could be built upon and so enable them, with focussed and integrated support, to have a self-sustaining future all their own.
Today, the building of Buturi School Academy has 6 completed classrooms, with its children able to have their education inside, protected from the climate’s extreme conditions. What they need right now are the same basic resources we in the West take for granted as classroom essentials, such as a teacher, tables, chairs, pens, pencils, rulers, textbooks and paper. They also need the additional natural light and ventilation afforded by windows and doors.
The children remain as eager to learn and just as patient with their surroundings as they were before. But this is not where I want to leave them. So, we are now appealing to the public to help us raise funds to furnish the classrooms that were completed in January of this year, 2017. I want to move them forward and give them the resources to advance their education and give them better life chances; the ability to get work, sustain themselves, and have a good life with a healthy family. With whatever support you can manage – however large and however small – you will play a crucial part in achieving this. Meanwhile, see how the children are doing right now: https://www.gofundme.com/buturiproject.