Despite the bumpy road this week there have been some great days here in Kenya and one of these was the Tumaini School Open Day held at Katolo. It was a chance to invite the whole community to come and learn about the project, ask questions and sign up for groups and committees.
Although the day kicked off 4 hours late, typical Kenya time, it was a great success! There was a big turnout with alot of support for the project shown throughout the day, especially from the women in the community!
A marquee, chairs and sound system arrived in the morning which in Katolo is no mean feat! There were posters pinned up, speeches and talks made, discussions and performances by the children from Kanyangoro Primary school. Kimberly, our resident film maker captured it all!
The past week has thrown up a few bumps in the road for bricks + cartwheels in Kenya.... One of the main issues we have come across that is causing us more than a few problems is the acquisition of land for the school.
The land has been put aside ready to be sold for over a year but there are numerous issues coming up now that we are in Katolo. Demands and ultimatums are being placed on bricks + cartwheels and the CBO by the land owners. So the process of buying the land has turned into a much more lengthy process than we anticipated.
After a week of negotiations and meetings and stress, the job of finding the best piece of land has now been handed over entirely to the CBO members. So here's hoping that they can sort this out.
Below are some photos from a meeting held under the tree at Kanyangoro Primary School discussing the land and other matters relating to the Tumaini Secondary School.
Last week we met with the land committee on site to walk the boundaries. The site will be pegged first thing on monday, the survey of the land will follow. We are also in the process of meeting with borehole consultants so that we can establish a water source on site asap!
The first meeting of the community based organisation (CBO) was held on Sunday 4th at Katolo community centre. The aim of this meeting was to decide upon the name of the CBO, to go through the process of registration and to nominate the position of chair, secretary and treasurer. We are very happy to say that we now are registered! The team is dynamic, passionate and forward thinking and most of all the members all have the girl child's best interests at heart.
The location of the first CBO meeting
The meeting begins
We welcome Oscar Okello, Caren Wambui Kiarie and Wycliff Washington (featured here) as the newly appointed administrators and look forward to working with you all in the future.
Congratulating Oscar on appointment of Chairperson
Left: Oscar Okello, Right: Joab Othacher
Caren (right) the newly appointed secretary and Washington (left) the treasurer
In total there were 22 community members, from varying backgrounds and disciplines present. The members will continue to grow now that the CBO is established.
After lengthy discussion the name of the CBO was decided as the Kano Girl Child Empowerment Group (Kano being the region that the school is located). What a brilliant name for such an important development group.
And the school now has a name and a very fitting one at that!! The decision was that it was to be a neutral name, inclusive of anyone and everyone - the CBO have tentatively given the name of Tumaini Girls High School, a kiswahili word for 'hope'.
We have been busy organising meetings with local organisations, consultants such as borehole contractors, surveyors and architects so that we will be ready to start work on site as soon as possible. With another CBO meeting planned for Wednesday this week the b+c team are so very excited and so very proud of all involved....
Washington with the certificate of registration for the CBO
A school open day is planned for Wednesday 14th. This will be an important chance to spread the word about the school, rally volunteers. The Chief is spreading the word to all in the area to come and show support, offer suggestions, more on the open day soon!
Hello from Kenya! Just checking in to say that we have all arrived safely to Kisumu just in time to welcome in the new year. After a long long flight we are now staying at our friend Mike's house in Kisumu. Our Kenyan friends have given those of us new to the town a tour of the local sites...
New years celebrations are never quite complete without a few rounds of twister, the hot spot! This was followed by a nyama choma, the kenyan equivalant to an aussie bbq closely followed by some serious dancing. What we believed were some great moves made by us we unfortunately we were severely shown up on the dance floor!!
We are excited to start 2009 in Kenya. With a meeting in Katolo with the community scheduled for this sunday we will be hitting the ground running.
Here's to a happy, healthy and prosperous new year!
bricks + cartwheels is an Australian based non government organisation that
works to provide an opportunity for people and communities to directly influence their own built environment.
As architects we seek to act as
facilitators to empower and engage communities not normally served by good design.
We believe in the potential for young designers to play a critical role in the built environment and the improvement of peoples’ lives.
bricks + cartwheels is currently working with the community of Katolo, Kenya to implement the design and construction of a new secondary school for girls.