Teacher housing with added domestic animal housing
A Two-Phase Approach
Tanzania’s public schools have a range of unmet needs for basic facilities. The Meali Primary School, the first that Friends of Meali International worked with, required help with everything. In just five years, we completely, physically, transformed the school. The measurable results were a dramatic improvement in the percentage of students qualifying for secondary school, an increased number of teachers hired at Meali, and a dramatic improvement of the ranking of the school in the district. Working closely with the School Committee, teaching staff and community we now have developed a “template” and some expertise for understanding what’s needed, the costs involved, and how best to prioritize and implement the projects. These are the people that select and prioritize all of our projects. These are the groups that must buy into these projects by helping and contributing as best they are able, whether it is collecting rocks for the foundation of a building or paying for one extra teacher while we pay for two or three.
Friends of Meali International has developed
a two-phase approach to improving a school’s educational environment.
PHASE ONE: PROJECTS
Focus on the capital improvements in the form of discrete projects that will maximize the amount of time and energy the students and teachers can focus on the educational process and introduce the modern teaching tools that facilitate and expand their learning opportunities.
PHASE TWO: PROGRAMS
Provide ongoing programs to help all elements of the community – parents, students, and teachers – understand the importance of education and be better prepared and more motivated to pursue it; awaken the children’s desire to dream big, learn more, and broaden their horizons; influence the teachers to stimulate their students’ curiosity still further and generate excitement in the classroom and enthusiasm for class participation.
These two developmental phases can overlap, but in the initial aspects of developing our relationship with a school, Phase One generally takes precedence and requires more extensive funding.
Capital improvement projects we have undertaken for the Meali Primary School include textbooks; desks; clean water; teacher housing; classrooms; a student center with kitchen, dining hall, library, computer center, and secure storage;
and latrines. We have installed solar power systems in the student center and in the teacher housing buildings. These projects have provided a major boost to the campus infrastructure that would have taken decades for the school’s community to accomplish. Other schools need only some of these improvements, which we can jointly select and prioritize from this template of needs. We have completed phase one projects for Losirwa Primary School and are now continuing with phase one projects for Oldeani Primary school