UNV Project Rehabilitates Iriba High School

5 May 2010

UNV Project Rehabilitates Iriba High School

The United Nations Volunteers (UNVs) in Chad have developed a project for the rehabilitation of Iriba High School, the only one in the department of Kobé. It was built in 1996 as a donation from the Département des Hauts de Seine in France and has since then never been renovated. The UNVs decided to undertake the project as part of the UNV mandate to Volunteer for Development (V4D) in an attempt to remedy to the poor learning/teaching conditions of the students and teachers. Local authorities as well as the Inspector of Education of the department of Kobé welcomed the project and were wholly involved in its implementation. The rehabilitation project has finally reached completion and the high school will be inaugurated on 7 May 2010.

The main objective of the project was to create a safer and cleaner learning/teaching environment for the students and their teachers. The secondary objectives were to promote the spirit of volunteerism and the sense of responsibility within the students group by involving them in the cleaning activities and basic repairs around the school in collaboration with the UNVs, as an example of volunteering. Those objectives have been met.

The execution of the project was made possible with the full involvement of the local NGO ADESK, the CIMIC Cell of the Mongolian Battalion (MONBATT), and most importantly, the hard work and commitment of the students and teachers, including the Principal, whenever called to the task. The project was co-funded by MINURCAT (through an 11,299,400 CFAF Quick Impact Project) and the telecommunication company Zain (5,000,000 CFAF) with the support of UNICEF as head of the Cluster Education. UNAIDS also contributed 1,125,000 CFAF for the purchase of schoolbags, which were distributed to the students during the launching ceremony of the project on 17 November 2009, as well as school supplies that were handed over to the Principal.

The project was divided into three (3) phases:

Phase 1: Replace the wooden roofing of the left wing of the school with a metal framework in order to protect the roof from sand/windstorms as well as termite damages;

Phase 2: Replace/repair all the windows and doors of the school to reinforce its security while maximizing natural sunlight during class hours.

Phase 3: Cleaning and painting of the entire establishment. UNVs as well as student and teacher volunteers of Iriba High School organized a cleaning activity with cleaning supplies donated by the company RA International. The CIMIC Cell of MONBATT then successfully undertook the challenging task of painting the entire school with materials provided by the UNVs and MONBATT.

MONBATT even went a step further by redecorating a special classroom 'MONBATT Classroom' wherein it donated 20 school benches, a white board with markers, a teacher's bureau and a reading stand.

In order to ensure the locally owned approach of the initiative, the students were sensitized, through the Principal and the teachers, on the spirit of volunteerism and the importance of civic engagement towards their community and country. They were also encouraged to take responsibility for maintaining their school. UNVs provided the best student and teacher volunteers with gifts as an incentive.

The UNVs still plan to organize a few activities, during which time they will raise the students' awareness