Link to website: http://childrenofchoba.org.uk/
Choba is a small village in rural Tanzania, where the children mainly live in mud huts with no running water or electricity. Valerie, a British lady originally from Bradford-on-Avon who has been living in Choba for nearly 15 years, set up an English-language primary school for the local children. The aim of our school is to provide the best possible primary education in English so the children are in a position to fulfill their academic potential when they get to secondary school. We also find sponsors to enable the most academically gifted children attend some of the top secondary schools in Tanzania.
The school has proved incredibly successful, consistently at or near the top of the District Education league tables, and with some of the brightest children coming in the top 100 (or higher!) nationwide. There are c240 children across 7 academic years, and in 2020 we are also sponsoring 45 Choba graduates with secondary and tertiary education. Children of Choba is a registered UK charity and one of the Trustees lives in Bath.
Choba Primary School needs around £50,000 per year to operate. This is mainly for teachers salaries, but also includes daily porridge for the children (sadly, many of the children come to school on an empty stomach), ancillary staff, exam entrance fees, books, maintenance for the buildings and solar power, sports and other activities. Around half of the costs are contributed by parents of the children (depending on their ability to pay), some funds come from individual donors in the UK, some funds come from Gift Aid on secondary sponsorship donations, and the rest is funded by applications to Trusts and Foundations.
Since 2015, RCS-Bath has kindly donated £500 per year to support Children of Choba. This £500 has been REALLY helpful and has been used to fund:
- New mandatory sports equipment
- New text books, when in 2017 the Government changed the syllabus and we had to buy new text books for every subject across every school year!
- School trips to Saadani, a nearby National Park, to give the children their first ever glimpse of the wild animals Sub-Saharan Africa is so known for
In 2020, we used the funds to purchase and install a new water storage tank – not very exciting, but essential for improved hand washing and hygiene facilities in the face of the global COVID pandemic.