The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) handed over eight primary schools to the Ministry of Information at a ceremony in Maimana Thursday 3 May.
Next to the new school building at the Deh Azizan school still stands the basic sun sheds that up until now has functioned as class rooms. Now, the sheds will be removed, and the children and teachers will at last move into a proper school building.
Hundreds of school children, teachers, parents and local officials were gathered at the Deh Azizan school to attend the opening of eight new primary schools in Maimana. From Kabul came the Minister of Education, Mohammed Hanif Atmar, the Norwegian Ambassador, Jan Erik Leikvang, and several members of the Wolesi Jirga (the Afghan parliament).
In their opening speeches both Minister Atmar and Ambassador Leikvang emphasized the importance of education for the development of Afghanistan. The Minister also commended the practical design of the new school buildings.
Using the basic school design provided by the MoE, Otto Töws, the project architect and Martin Guth, NRC Project Coordinator widened the original corridors, heightened the ceiling and added a slope which allows warm air to travel across the room and out through a vent. In addition the NRC has dug wells to provide water supply to the schools and added latrines were there were none.
"I want this design implemented in all of Afghanistan", said the Minister of Education.
School buildings are still scarce in the northern province of Faryab after years of war and destruction and 100% access to primary education remains a goal.
The NRC cooperates with the MoE on rebuilding and strengthening the education sector in Faryab. In2007 the MoE plans to build twenty more schools, out of which ten will be provided by the NRC. The NRC school building project is funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
In addition to school building the NRC trains teachers and organises community mobilisation in Faryab to encourage parents to send their children to school.
For more information contact:
NRC Afghanistan - Pakistan - Iran
Press and Information Officer
Mobile: +93 (0) 700 030 415