A school for Tanseiga
If sending your children to school meant a five-mile walk on an unsafe road twice a day, what would you do?
Until last year, this was the dilemma facing parents in Tanseiga, a village in central Burkina Faso. Sending children to school involved a five mile walk on a long and sometimes dangerous road. While parents were aware of the value of educating their children, this was not a choice that many parents were prepared to make. As a result, only 7 percent or 35 out of the 500 children in the village went to school.
Frustrated by the barriers they faced in getting their children to school, parents in Tanseiga approached Plan to find a solution. Plan worked with parents, children, and the local education authority to plan the construction of a new school in the village.
With Plan's support, the community was able to build a new school with three classrooms, an office, lodgings for teachers, a borehole, and latrines. The school is also powered by solar energy. The school's first 68 pupils are now enjoying lessons in purpose-built, concrete classrooms fully equipped with desks, chairs, and cupboards for storage.
Bazona, a local education authority worker is very pleased. “This school is a blessing, meeting a real need for education. The community is lucky to receive it and even the villages surrounding this village will benefit," she says.
Parents also play a vital role in the life of the school. While waiting on the delivery of government-donated food, they have organized themselves to provide cooked meals for the children during lunchtime. They are also playing an active part in learning more about the education of their children.
As Kibsa explains: “Now we can send more children to school and we will have people around to read our letters and other papers to us.” Parents in the community know that the skills that their children are learning today, will make a huge impact on the progress of their community in the future.