During the recent training held at Tenakoga and Titinge, teachers and members of the management committees and students were able to report some improvements that the solar power has brought already to the schools and communities.
At both schools, exam year students (Grade 6) have been using the classrooms for evening studies on a regular, almost daily basis. Furthermore, Form 3 and 5 secondary students from the neighborhood have also benefited with the opportunity to use the classrooms to study before their upcoming examinations.
At Titinge, a women’s livlihoods and economic development group has been using the school for meetings and training sessions. At Tenakoga, a Church group was able to work on their programmes. Thus, there are strong signs of positive benefits feeding to the local communities improving their engagement with the schools.
Miriam, a student at Tenakoga, gave a welcoming speech to the training team to share the students’ impressions of the new facilities:
“On behalf of Tenakoga Primary staff and students I am honoured to welcome you to our school.
Our school is so very old, because it started in 1948. However, when we received the first beam of the solar light, it changes the whole outlook of the environment and the mindset of people. Tenakoga is like a town in the jungle of Guadalcanal. Everyone will agree with me that the solar for school project is our school’s pride.Thankyou UNICEF and NZAid for the generous donation. Without your enourmous support, solar light will be a dream that never comes true.”
At both schools the teachers are keen to develop ICT skills and resources and at Tenakoga, the teachers have already been organising in-service computer training using their one PC computer donated by students from the area who are studying in Fiji, with other friends of the community The nearby secondary school has also benefited by using the power to create and print graduation certificates and produce video clips of students graduating. The school is in a quite remote rural location and without the availability of the facility this might not have been possible.
Likewise, when an Officer from their Adventist Education Authority visited the area recently, he was able to stop over at the school to work on the education programme, benefiting from the availability of power for his laptop and evening lighting, and did not need to return to Honiara, thus saving valuable time better spent working with the teachers.