POSTED January 25, 2018
New classrooms fill children with excitement in Burkina Faso
Students tells us why their new school rooms means so much
By Patrice Zongo, CCFC communications manager, Burkina Faso
“I spent two years in a straw-shed classroom,” Marie told me. “It was not easy.”
The Grade 6 student opened up when I visited her primary school in Burkina Faso. I chatted with her and her peers about what it was like to learn in one of more than 4,000 straw-shed classrooms in the country, as reported by the National Institute of Statistics and Demography in 2015.
The temporary classrooms — dark, fragile and unsafe — were built to avoid turning children away from the overcrowded school.
That was before donor support helped build and equip three cement, sand and rock classrooms with 56 writing benches, six blackboards as well as three desks and chairs for teachers.
Thirteen-year-old Marie, and 14-year-old Rémi, two of the nearly 200 students at the school, were eager to share their experiences.
Marie: When it rained, we used to run [out of class], or we rushed home before the rain. The wind sometimes took the roof off. One day it fell on us. Once it falls, donkeys rush to eat the straw. Even when there was no wind, passing donkeys ate the straw stems. We would chase them away but they always came back.
Rémi: Very often we found snakes (hiding in the straw). One day, we saw one and everyone ran out, including our teacher. Luckily no one was hurt, and the snake was killed. When we sat in those classrooms, we were never at ease. Thank you for our safe new classrooms!
You can help children like Marie and Rémi get the school supplies they need to thrive at school. Visit our gift catalogue to give today: childrenbelieve.ca/gift-catalogue.
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