Rotary Club Malta inaugurates the new Rotary Malta Primary School in Uganda on Nkose Island in Lake Victoria together with funds from the Maltese Government’s International Development Aid and Kids of Africa (KOA), a Swiss based NGO based in Bwerenga.  The project, which cost over €85,000, provides previously unavailable formal education to the 300 children living on the island and consists of classrooms, dormitories, kitchen and dinning areas and washing facilities.


Rotary Malta Primary School Inaugurated in Uganda

7th November 2015
Rotary Club Malta have co-funded the building of a new primary school in Uganda on Nkose Island in Lake Victoria together with funds from the Maltese Government’s International Development Aid and Kids of Africa (KOA), a Swiss based NGO based in Bwerenga.
Rotary's project co-ordinator, Past President Ian De Cesare, spent the last 18 months working closely with KOA's founder Burkhard Varnholdt and Director Tage Budolfson to turn what was virtually a jungle into a dream primary school on this remote island with a population of 1,400 people where poverty is prevalent.  With there not being a school on the island and travel to the mainland being a 9 hour journey, the approximate 300 children were unable to obtain any formal education prior to the inauguration of what has been named Rotary Malta  Primary School on the 7 November 2015, attended by Ian De Cesare.
The buildings, built on land cleared of wild trees and thick vegetation, consist of two blocks of seven classrooms, two dormitories, a kitchen and dining area and toilets for boys and girls together with a small guest room for visiting teachers and visitors from KOA's monitoring officials. This facility is totally fenced off for security. Most of the work was done by local labour to provide much needed work to the local community whose main activity canters on fishing.
The project cost in excess of €85,000.
This is not the first time that Rotary Club Malta has been active in Uganda and specifically with KOA. Over the last 10 years Rotary Club Malta has had 2 other projects at Kids Of Africa, the first providing 5 solar water panels for the children's homes and two years ago, Rotary sponsored a PV electrical system in the 'KOA village' providing continuous electric light to the 95 children who reside in the KOA orphanage.
Earlier this month, Ian De Cesare visited Nkose island with staff from KOA as well as a number of political officials to formally declare the school open. Leading the local officials, was the President of the Kalanga District, Wily Lugolobi, who was full of praise for Rotary Club Malta and the Maltese Government for their generosity in providing funds and overseeing the building of the school. He told the many villagers present that Rotary Club Malta was living up to its motto of ‘Service Above Self’. Clearly Mr. Lugolobi had done his research.
He also thanked Tage Budolfson, KOA's director, who visited the island a number of times during the construction for offering invaluable assistance in both the construction and preparation of the school itself.
The partnership with KOA has proven to be invaluable.  Apart from them provided the plans for the extensive buildings, they also sent their own building and teaching staff to assist in both the actual construction and the preparation for the school opening ensuring a high level of reliability that Rotary Club Malta always strives for.  Teaching staff from KOA's Kids Pioneer School also spent time with local teachers to prepare a suitable curriculum and to ensure the highest standards of education possible. Teacher support is also being provided on an ongoing basis.
The chairman of the local community was also full of praise for the sponsors, saying that without this kind of intervention islands such as Nkose will remain without any chance of advancement. Mr Lugolobi promisedIan De Cesare surrounded by some of the children receiving their education at Rotary Malta Primary School the school head teacher, Irene Nalwoga, that the Ugandan government will provide sufficient resources to this remote school which he said will be the standard bearer for education in this area. 
In his response, Ian De Cesare stated that “he was moved to see many lovely children in their school uniform that looked like they were yearning to come to the wonderful facility of learning when they previously had no hope of an education. It is only with education that society moves forward to overcome the inherent challenges faced by peoples living in such remote areas. He said that Rotary Club Malta will continue to support these efforts with all its heart.” He said he felt humbled to be with there and thanked them for the opportunity to allow him to live the Rotary motto. He presented the head teacher with a laptop computer to kick start a small IT comprehension programme at the school.