Working to change things at my school!

Aness commenting on the school design
© UNICEF Malawi/2018/Jacob Nankhonya

UNICEF is constructing new school buildings for Nankhali Primary School in Lilongwe, including six classrooms, teachers houses and toilet blocks. The project is funded through donations from the German public, via a TV fundraiser fronted by football star Mats Hummels. Aness Rodgers is a Standard 7 pupil at Nankhali School. She shares her experience of the project.

My name is Aness Rodgers, I live in Dzodzwe village, T/A Tsabango in Malawi. My father is a shop keeper. I go to Nankhali Primary School. But the school has problems.

Firstly, because there is a lack of classrooms children have to take classes sitting under a tree. When the rains come, a lot of children don’t learn as they have no shelter.

We don’t have a library either. A lot of children don’t study because when they start reading, other children make noise which disturbs them. Instead of studying they just play.

Toilets are also a problem. The toilets are so few that children just go to relieve themselves in the bush. This is also the same for the teachers as their toilets are also not enough.

And there is no borehole. We don’t have anywhere to draw drinking water. Children end up drawing water from swamps. Because of this many children get sick and don’t go to school.

Finally, we lack a sports ground. A lot of children complain about the lack of a place to go and play various games like Football, Phada and Jingo.

Aness giving students feedback on the designs of the new classroom blocks 
© UNICEF Malawi/2018/Jacob Nankhonya

But the good news is I am part of the team that is working to changes things. Now at my school, toilets, a library, classrooms, a borehole and teacher’s houses are being built.

I feel good because we need these structures. A lot of children will be able to learn in the new classrooms. Lessons will be going on. Even when rains come, the children will be able to continue learning.

When I finish school, I want to be a doctor.

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