After taking a break from the working world, Danny McLellan arrived at Jifundishe in the middle of a month-long African adventure that took him from Ethiopia to Rwanda, Tanzania to Kenya and on to Botswana. As I write this post, he is starting his Kilimanjaro climb, but yesterday, he spent the day at the Jifundishe Free Library teaching primary school students how to “map”
It’s April! The rains have come, the maize is tall and green and the world around me has changed to from a dry, dusty landscape to a lush, verdant jungle. It happens every year (well, almost) and it always reminds me how important water is to our existence. Here in Tanzania, rain is seen as a blessing, a life-giving substance that cannot be created,
The classroom will have two skylights that will provide light produced by that wonderful Tanzanian sunshine! The floor is prepared in stages. The last stage will be a smooth, cement finish. The finishing layer is applied in large rectangular slabs, bordered by metal to prevent cracking The “fundis” who built the water tank stand take a moment to rest and admire their work. Two,
The roof is on and the porch/entrance is ready to finish! The classroom will have three skylights for added light. The floors are all smoothed and being made ready for the next step…..finishing!
This building seems to be rising right out of the ground!!!! What a view! The roof framing is underway and it won’t be long until the iron sheet is on! One wall of the classroom has no windows. Inside, we’ll have a giant blackboard! That is done by painting flat black paint on the wall.
Look closely and you can see the beginning of the new Teachers’ Office! Finally, a place where they can mark exams, create lesson plans and keep supplies.
Everyone working on the project is from local village homes. Women are helping by carrying water from the well to the building The foundation is filled with earth, dug up from the Cacti House yard! We now have a swimming pool sized hole over there! Many hands make for light work! With all this help, the classroom looks like it is growing right out
The road to the library is terrible and often, our material arrives well after dark.
First, we mark out the space for the new classroom. It’s all done very scientifically, with rope and sticks. Sadly, that tree will have to go. All the work will be done using PEOPLE POWER! Luckily, the area is FULL of large rocks, perfect for our purpose!