Last Day at the School

As Moses had said, “the last day was overtime.” The plan was for us to be finished with our work by Friday and to use Saturday to begin to prepare for our departure. However, due to the excitement of the teachers and the adoption of the computer lessons, the computer training program was extended one more day. We also used this time to install reading rooms at one of the villages. Brad, Mark, and Bertha focused on training the teachers in Internet search, e-mail, and typing. They also taught one of the teachers, Maurice, advanced techniques such as PowerPoint, projector usage, and troubleshooting techniques. The teachers now will be able to develop lesson plans in MS Word and print them out for the class. They will also be able to perform Internet education research and communication via e-mail. Moreover, Maurice will be able to develop presentations using PowerPoint and show them to the students using the projector that we delivered. While there is still training that needs to take place and there will probably be some initial issues on adapting to this technolgoy, this computer lab represents a huge step forward for the school. I have never seen the teachers more excited. They know their newfound skills will serve them for the rest of their lives. A window to the world has been opened which will allow them to, as Moses put it, “Dream wider.”

While the team was busy with computer training, Moses and I visited a nearby Village (Mphanga) to  install our first reading room. The idea is to deploy solar lighting to one of the buildings in the village so that students will have a place to study in the evening. If this pilot program works well, we plan to deploy solar reading rooms in all of the villages that make up the Dwankhozi catchment area. You can see some pictures of the team and the children outside of the reading room as well as one of our students (Martin) using the lights to study. As you might imagine, the students are very excited about this and we are hopeful this will help improve student performance by giving them more time to study.

There was an air of sadness within our team as we prepared to depart from the school. However, this feeling was surpassed by the overwhelming sense of joy and excitement we all felt about the accomplishments of the week and the hope for the future. It was a tremendously busy week and much was accomplished. Even more importantly than the tangible accomplishments, was the renewed sense of friendship, partnership, and hope for the future. We look forward to the next time we see our friends. Although that may be some time, the newly installed computer lab will allow us to stay in touch more easily. The students, teachers, and parents of Dwankhozi are never far away from our thoughts and now they will no longer be too far away for us to connect.

See you all back in the US soon!  Thanks for keeping up with us.

Matt, Mark & Brad

(Mphanga Village Reading Room)


(Children Watching Video of Themselves on Smartphone)





  1. Way to go, you guys!!! SO EXCITING. Thank you for telling and showing us! I love that the students and teachers are excited, and that the sharing with Mphanga village! The sky is the limit now!

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