Follow up visit to Kitini College

ChoraChori Founder/CEO Philip Holmes today paid an evaluation and monitoring visit to Kitini College; he was greeted by a very happy Headteacher, staff and pupils.

Saroj KC, Headteacher of Kitini College, NepalIt is incumbent upon us to follow up the projects we fund; this is a task that includes through visits by the CEO and Trustees of the charity. The Treasurer makes an annual visit to review the local finances. Today Philip Holmes visited Kitini College which has received tens of thousands of pounds of funding from ChoraChori towards making this one of the top state schools in Nepal. Through grants secured from Foundations and some community fundraising, we have been able to pay for science laboratories and a computer lab that have allowed the school to extend its curriculum. Indeed it is currently making the transition from being a Nepali medium school to an English medium school. This represents a major step-up for Kitini.

The most recent project has been the retrofitting of the school to make it resistant to future earthquakes. Three-quarters of the £68k project has been funded through us by our UK partner Foundations while the remainder has been donated by a grant from the local municipality. The building works began in February and should be completed by the end of next month. There has been a slight delay due to the water supply drying up – a sign of the times, sadly, as in the recent past this part of the valley provided water to the rest of Kathmandu.

The Headteacher, Mr Saroj KC, pictured above with Bhaskar Karki and Shailaja CM of ChoraChori-Nepal, was beaming with delight. These works have meant so much to him not only for professional reasons but for very personal ones. For he told us today that he is a former pupil of the school and his father was once the Vice-Principal. This sense of ownership explains why he is so passionate about taking the school forward.

There was one other marker of success apart from the tangible ones that we saw today. Somewhat surprisingly, when we started working at the school we found that 70% of the pupils were girls. This is because parents were sending their sons to private schools so that they could have a better education. In the space of three years that percentage has dropped to 60% although the numbers of students at the school have increased substantially. Essentially, our enhancements are levelling the playing field and boys are now being transferred from nearby private schools to Kitini. Mr KC is confident that the proportion will be 50:50 very soon.

Our next major project at the school will be to establish a bursary scheme to begin at the start of the next academic year in April 2020. This will benefit children from the poorest families, irrespective of gender.

 

ChoraChori supports a new major capital project at Kitini College

ChoraChori and its partners have provided funds for a new major capital project at Kitini College.

In 2015 Kitini College suffered some structural damage when two earthquakes struck Nepal in April and May. It could have been much worse; a neighbouring private school collapsed causing fatalities.

This government school is important within Lalitpur District as it serves a huge catchment area that extends into the adjacent Kavre and Kathmandu Districts. Many of the students come from low caste families and include the children of the desperately poor peripatetic population that provides seasonal labour in nearby brick kilns. And the children at the ChoraChori Children’s Refuge and Rehabilitation Centre also attend the school, part of their return to normality after the trauma they have endured. Therefore it has been important for us to reinforce the school, literally, by a major project that will make it resistant to future earthquakes.

Working alongside our new project partner, Gandys Foundation, we have been successful in securing all the funds necessary from major donors and two other grant-making Trusts for this four month long project. The local municipality has also contributed 25% of the project costs, so it has been great to see this local commitment to a great school.

In memory of Zoe Carss

ChoraChori helps ensure that Zoe Carss is remembered in Nepal

British woman Zoe Carss died in a tragic swimming accident in Thailand in 1996. Just beforehand she had spent part of her gap year teaching in a school at Godawari, on the southeast of Kathmandu valley. In response to her loss, Zoe’s parents Richard and Tessa set up an education charity in her memory. Ever since The Zoe Carss Education Trust has been making grants towards education projects in Nepal and South Africa.

ChoraChori values highly “in memoriam” projects. Earlier this year we were honoured to be able to set up Physics and Biology laboratories at Kitini Higher Secondary School in memory of Lucy Monro who died in a cycling accident in Dubai in 2015. And now Kitini School can teach all science subjects to the highest grades thanks to the Chemistry lab that we’ve founded in Zoe’s memory. This is especially appropriate as the school where Zoe taught was just along the way from Kitini and she would have known the area well. Now, just like Lucy’s picture is on the wall of the Biology lab so also will Zoe’s picture go on the wall of the new Chemistry classroom.

2017 has been a really successful year in our relationship with Kitini School and in our Nepal education projects. Not only have we established the science department but we have also set up a new computer suite, thanks to grant funding from Hatemalo in Germany. We have even rebuilt one of its associated primary schools in memory of Christian Kaesler. As we look ahead to plans for 2018 we will continue to support education in our local area and are very open to suggestions for doing so in memory of other special people who loved Nepal. Just drop us a line if you would like to explore commemoration possibilities with us.

A science laboratory for Kitini School in Kathmandu

A boost for one of the top government schools in Nepal

The kids at our refuge attend Kitini College in Godawari, one of the top government schools in Nepal. Seventy percent of its pupils are girls because parents choose to send their sons to private schools. So ChoraChori decided to give the school the education that Nepali kids deserve!

ChoraChori helping education in Nepal

government schools in NepalAs part of its contribution to earthquake recovery, ChoraChori has been conducting a major education programme. The aim has been to restore and develop government schools in Nepal so that they are even better than before. So far, this has involved rebuilding three schools in the hills (job done!) and developing secondary education at Kitini College. Kitini serves these schools and many others within a wide catchment area. We have pledged to help Kitini replace its antiquated computers and set up science laboratories. These latter will allow the school to extend its curriculum into teaching science to Higher Secondary level (“Plus Two” = Grades 11 and 12). See the film above to hear from the pupils and headteacher, Mr Saroj KC, explaining the need.

government schools in NepalA great start at Kitini

This past week we’ve made a start thanks to a generous grant from a UK Foundation. This has paid for us to set up a biology laboratory and purchase some of the items the school needs for its future physics laboratory. The picture left shows the outstanding learning environment that students can now enjoy.

What we need next

Our educational needs are laid out in our education programme document, but our next priority is to raise £7,000 to complete the set up of the physics and biology labs. An equal priority is the need for £3,700 to government schools in Nepalreplace the antiquated computer suite (see picture left).

If you can help us with a small donation towards this project then please use the button below.

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