EFFORTS to ensure that girls do not abscond or drop out of school due to walking long distances has received a boost following a move by Tanzania Social Action Fund (TASAF) to construct a student hostel at Mlowa Secondary School in Makambako Township Council.
The hostel includes amenities such as a special girls changing room, a toilet for students with disabilities, five bathrooms and five toilet holes.
Among other amenities are teachers’ office building and two semidetached houses, both comprising of three bedrooms, a restroom, kitchen, store and a public toilet.
This was revealed yesterday by the Head Teacher of the school, Mr Raymond Kyando, while speaking to a team of journalists who are visiting TASAF implemented projects in the region which are being funded by the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).
According to Mr Kyando, it is a big hassle for both the students and teachers as they have to walk 30 kilometres to and from the school every day.
“The facilities are a saviour to our school, considering that most of these students come from environments which are not friendly for them to study and do revisions on their own.
When the school was established in 2014, we were facing a challenge of students absconding school,” said Mr Kyando.
He pointed out that the following years, the school introduced a camp and to a larger extent proved to be a success for the Form II results.
But, he said that the camp had to be suspended in 2018 to pave way for construction, after which the school experienced four cases of pregnancies.
He, however, noted that teachers are forced to rent away from the school because there are no nearby houses which they can rent to ease the burden.
Mr Kyando expressed gratitude to the government for introducing such a programme which is of great importance to the development of the nation.
The Head Teacher noted that the school accommodates 337 students (218 females and 156 males) and 20 teachers (11 females and nine males).
The hostel has a capacity to accommodate 72 female students and eight teachers with regard to the houses. TASAF Monitoring Officer in Makambako, Mr Edwin Mlowe observed that the support is a continuation of the implementation of phase III of the OPEC funded project under the targeted infrastructure component.
He disclosed that people are given a chance to select a project of their need and TASAF intervenes in funding the project with 10 percent contribution from the communities.
“As for this particular project, at least 75m/- has been spent in the construction of the hostel, teachers houses, offices and supervision,” noted Mr Mlowe, pointing out that the construction encompasses all the water systems and three water tanks for all the three buildings at the school.
Mlowa Ward Councillor, Mr Paul Mwalongo extended appreciation to TASAF for availing the funds and ensuring timely completion of the project. He also thanked the community for selecting the project and putting their efforts in implementation of the project.
“I profoundly applaud the government for introducing this programme which has saved the lives of many poor people, especially widows and aged people who earlier on could not sustain themselves, but through TASAF they are now running small business,” he said.
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Publish date : 2019-04-28 13:33:05