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Personal Stories

Nambi Masitulah – Makonzi Boarding School

Nambi Masitulah Drop in the Bucket- clean water UgandaNambi Masitulah is in class P6 at the Makonzi Boarding School which is in the Mubende district of western Uganda. When we first met Nambi, she was drinking from this water hole.
Before the new well, all of the pupils at the school were getting their water from this same contaminated water source.  They used this water for everything from drinking, bathing, washing their clothes and the school used it for cooking.   Several months ago, Nambi got extremely sick with Typhoid.  She was in bed for two weeks and thought she was going to die.  She missed all of her classes for the entire two weeks and was just in her bed in the dorm room.  Her parents live in the village which is many miles away so they were not able to come.  The teachers and her friends were there but she was wishing for her mom and dad.  She was very scared.  Now she is very happy for the clean water and happy that her and the other pupils no longer have to fetch their water from the old dirty source anymore.

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Personal Stories

Interview with Headmistress at Lire Secondary School

lire-secondary-1
The name of the woman pictured here is Gune Sylvia Mikaya. She is the Headmistress of the Lire Secondary School in South Sudan.
She graciously allowed us to interview her after the well was installed at the school.
Question: What is your educational background?

Answer: Because of the civil war in Sudan, I had my education in Uganda right from the lower level to the University of Makerere where I graduated with a degree in Education.

Question: When and how did you join Lire Secondary School?

Answer: (she smiles) I joined Lire Secondary as the Headmistress in 2007 after the person who was the Headmaster before failed to satisfy the expectations of the Board of Governors.

Question: How has the water situation been in this school?

Answer: The situation has been worse, especially when students have to move two kilometers to the nearest borehole . This has not only been hectic, but time consuming as well. It has also been making it very hard to control the discipline of the students. What makes it worse is when students fight with the community for water because of who should take water first.

Question: Would you like to pass a message to the donor?

Answer: (she pauses for a minute) I actually have run out of words, I don’t know where to begin and where to stop.  I appreciate the donor for providing us with very clean and abundant water, which I know will save our lives, save us time and improve community-school relationships.

Question: Are there any challenges you have had to face?

Answer: Of course!! As a woman controlling the behavior of men on the staff, it is hard given the cultural background of women being under men. But I keep myself focused and ready to meet any challenge.

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Personal Stories

Amoko Anthony Alibe’s Story

 
Amoko Anthony Alibe is the headmaster from the Stars of Hope Primary School in Malakia near Nimule in the Equatoria District of South Sudan.
 
Anthony was born in 1978 in a village,not far from the school where he now teaches, called Matara. Unfortunately, In 1989 the LRA attacked Anthony’s village and he had to leave Sudan for a refugee camp in Uganda.
 
Although life in the refugee camp was tough for Anthony. The educational he was able to receive in Uganda was considerably better than the one he would have received in Sudan, so Anthony was able to stay in Uganda and get his secondary education in Ajumani. After graduating he went for his teacher training at the Arua Primary Teachers College in Arua, Uganda. Two years later he returned to Ajumani and taught for another two years. Anthony loved teaching and the students loved his enthusiasm for the work. At the Uganda Martyrs University he received his Masters degree and after three years later he returned to Sudan.
 
In 2008 Anthony became the headmaster and English teacher at the Stars of Hope Primary School in Magwi county. There he was in charge of over 704 primary students and 241 nursery students.
 
“I had the skills to be a teacher, but never realized that you become a role model to the students, in every way imaginable,” Anthony reflected.
 
Before the well was drilled the school had to walk 1 km every day for water, which doesn’t seem as far as many schools in South Sudan, but when you take into account just how much water a school of nearly 1,000 students needs on a daily basis you start to look at it with different eyes. Every day the school’s cooks and other workers would walk with 15 jerry cans 3 times a day! Sometimes the had to pull students away from their studies to help with fetching water.
 
Stars of Hope is unusual for South Sudan in that it provides the children with food every day. For some of these kids this may be the only food they will eat all day, but the school needed water to be able to prepare the children’s lunch.
 
The nearest well was in the middle of town and being used by a lot of people , so there were always long lines for the water. “Sometimes,” Anthony explains, “the borehole in town will be so congested that the children will simply go without food for a day.”
 
Everyone at Stars of Hope is very happy about the new well. “We thank Drop in the Bucket and their donors for what they’ve done here for this school,” Anthony proclaims. “We shall never forget this moment in the history of Stars of Hope.”
This project was a collaboration between Drop in the Bucket and our friends at Water Harvest. Thanks to Steven and everyone at WHI for their hard work and dedication to the project. Also thanks to Godfrey Lilia for the photo and story.