It is 10: 30 am, the recreation time at Kananda primary school in Fizi territory. It is raining, cloudy and cold but the rain cannot stop students and teachers to rejoice: singing and dancing as part of their recreation time.

Kananda Primary School is just one of 32 schools rehabilitated by NRC in South Kivu province. Due to roof damage from bullets, when it rained, students would have to suspend classes, as the inside of their classrooms would begin to flood. In addition, the sanitation infrastructure in the school and throughout the village was dilapidated or non-existent. Students were risking both their safety and health by using the crudely constructed latrines. Being that the latrines were uncovered, students were vulnerable to infections and water-borne diseases.

With Education Cannot Wait donor support, NRC has patched the damaged roof to ensure that classrooms, students and materials remain dry when it rains. Metallic doors and window frames were provided, and the school was repainted. Latrines were rebuilt and covered for conditions that are more sanitary. The learning environment has greatly improved and the number of enrolled students has increased from 240 students in 2018 to 340 students in April 2019.

To implement the Education Cannot Wait-funded project, NRC has collaborated with Danish Church Aid (DCA) and two national NGOs, Collectif ALPHA UJUVI and Caritas to rebuild destroyed schools, restore proper sanitation and water points in schools. NRC has provided notebooks, pens, pencils and other school materials to children and has trained teachers on psychosocial support. In addition, we paid the final examination fees for students in sixth grade and trained teachers on psychosocial support, Risk Reduction Plans and Training of Parent-Teacher Associations on Good Governance in Schools. 
In total, NRC education support has reached 14,000 of children whom the majority are displaced, returnee and destitute children from the community in South Kivu province.

This assistance, however, is only a drop in the ocean, seen the huge needs which are still uncovered in the province and the country. We need further efforts in term of funding so that we continue rebuilding destroyed schools; organise catch-up classes to help many children out of school to get access to quality education in a safe and protected environment.

April 26, 2019
Photo: Ephrem Chiruza/NRC
DR Kongo

Slik bygger vi opp igjen sønderskutte klasserom i DR Kongo

– Skolen ble truffet av flere kuler under angrepene. Væpnede menn rev ut vinduskarmer og dører som de brukte som fyring for å lage mat.

Det forteller kongolesiske Jerome Atembo. Han jobber som rektor på en barneskole i Sør-Kivu, en av mange konfliktrammede provinser i Den demokratiske republikken Kongo. I over 20 år har millioner av kongolesiske barn fått avbrutt skolegangen sin igjen og igjen på grunn av konflikt. Minst 7,4 millioner barn i landet mellom fem og 17 år går ikke på skole. Mange dropper også ut av skolen fordi de ikke har råd til å betale skolepenger.

DR Kongo er nummer to på Flyktninghjelpens liste over verdens mest neglisjerte fluktkriser. Kamper mellom væpnede grupper over ressurser og territorier, ødeleggelse av hjem og skoler, samt angrep på sivile har skapt et betydelig behov for humanitær hjelp i flere deler av landet. Situasjonen har blitt enda mer komplisert etter at et utbrudd av ebola ble erklært øst i landet i august 2018.

Atembos skole ligger i landsbyen Kananda i den gullrike provinsen Sør-Kivu øst i DR Kongo. De fleste innbyggerne lever av gårdsbruk og arbeid i gullgruvene utenfor landsbyen. De siste årene har det jevnlig brutt ut vold mellom væpnede grupper som representerer landeiere eller kvegnomader, noe som skaper stor usikkerhet i innbyggernes liv.

Flyktet fra skolen

Skolene ble påført store ødeleggelser av kampene. I 2017 hadde alle landsbyens lærere og elever flyktet på grunn av volden, og all skolegang ble avbrutt. Situasjonen er fortsatt ustabil, men elever og lærere har begynt å vende tilbake.

Flyktninghjelpen jobber tett med konfliktrammede lokalsamfunn for å bygge opp igjen og reparere ødelagte skoler, organisere skoletimer hvor barn som har vært ute av skolen kan ta igjen det tapte og kurse lærere.

Thirteen-year-old Francine is just one of the 14,000 children who benefited the NRC’s education programming in South Kivu’s southeastern Fizi territory. Everyday Francine attends Asifiwe Primary School in Kanada village in her crisp white shirt and navy blue skirt. During one of the armed attacks, militiamen killed her father. Since then, no one has been able to afford to pay for her education.  She was expelled from school due to non-payment of school fees and eventually had to drop out for a year. 

“My mother had no money to pay for school,” she says. “I had to stop going to school and help her farm the  field.” 

In early 2019, she attended the NRC’s catch-up class where she developed her French language skills, math and other subjects. She also received notebooks, pens, a ruler and pencils from the program.  Now Francine can read and write in basic French.

To implement the Education Cannot Wait-funded project, NRC has collaborated with Danish Church Aid (DCA) and two national NGOs, Collectif ALPHA UJUVI and Caritas to rebuild destroyed schools, restore proper sanitation and water points in schools. NRC has provided notebooks, pens, pencils and other school materials to children and has trained teachers on psychosocial support. In addition, we paid the final examination fees for students in sixth grade and trained teachers on psychosocial support, Risk Reduction Plans and Training of Parent-Teacher Associations on Good Governance in Schools. 

In total, NRC education support has reached 14,000 of children whom the majority are displaced, returnee and destitute children from the community in South Kivu province.

This assistance, however, is only a drop in the ocean, seen the huge needs which are still uncovered in the province and the country. We need further efforts in term of funding so that we continue rebuilding destroyed schools; organise catch-up classes to help many children out of school to get access to quality education in a safe and protected environment.

April 26, 2019
Photo: Ephrem Chiruza/NRC
Les billedteksten Tretten år gamle Francine er ett av 14.000 barn som deltar i Flyktninghjelpens skoleprogram i Sør-Kivu. Foto: Ephrem Chiruza/Flyktninghjelpen

Tilbake på skolebenken

I hvit skjorte og marineblått skjørt går tretten år gamle Francine stolt til skolen i Kananda. Hun er ett av 14.000 barn som deltar i Flyktninghjelpens skoleprogram i Sør-Kivu. I 2018 ble Francines far drept i et angrep i landsbyen. Siden har ingen vært i stand til å betale for utdanningen hennes, og hun ble utvist fra skolen fordi skolepengene uteble.

– Moren min hadde ingen penger å betale for skolegangen min, forteller Francine. – Så jeg måtte slutte på skolen og hjelpe henne på gården.

Men på begynnelsen av 2019 begynte Francine på Flyktninghjelpens skoleprogram hvor hun fikk anledning til å ta igjen det tapte skoleåret, og hun utviklet kunnskapene sine i fransk, matte og andre fag. I tillegg har hun fått kladdebøker og skrivesaker.

Kananda Primary School is just one of 32 schools rehabilitated by NRC in South Kivu province. Due to roof damage from bullets, when it rained, students would have to suspend classes, as the inside of their classrooms would begin to flood. In addition, the sanitation infrastructure in the school and throughout the village was dilapidated or non-existent. Students were risking both their safety and health by using the crudely constructed latrines. Being that the latrines were uncovered, students were vulnerable to infections and water-borne diseases.

With Education Cannot Wait donor support, NRC has patched the damaged roof to ensure that classrooms, students and materials remain dry when it rains. Metallic doors and window frames were provided, and the school was repainted. Latrines were rebuilt and covered for conditions that are more sanitary. The learning environment has greatly improved and the number of enrolled students has increased from 240 students in 2018 to 340 students in April 2019.  

This assistance, however, is only a drop in the ocean.  There are huge needs, which are still unaddressed within the province and throughout the country. We need further funding efforts so that we can continue rebuilding destroyed schools, organise catch-up classes to help children out of school so that they can access quality education in a safe and protected environment.

April 26, 2019
Photo: Ephrem Chiruza/NRC
Les billedteksten Flyktninghjelpen jobber tett med konfliktrammede lokalsamfunn for å bygge opp igjen og reparere ødelagte skoler, organisere skoletimer hvor barn som har vært ute av skolen kan ta igjen det tapte og kurse lærere. Foto: Ephrem Chiruza/Flyktninghjelpen

Bygger opp klasserom, bygger opp liv

Takene på Kananda skole var fulle av kulehull etter kampene, og når det regnet ble klasserommene fylt av vann. I tillegg manglet skolen et skikkelig sanitæranlegg. Flyktninghjepen har reparert taket, satt inn vinduskarmer og dører i metall og bygget nye latriner på skolen. Fra 2018 til 2019 økte antallet elever på skolen fra 240 til 340.

Kananda er en av 32 skoler Flyktninghjelpen har repartert i Sør-Kivu, men behovene er fremedeles enorme – i regionen og i resten av landet.