July 30, 2015
The ongoing success of the Malaika School for Girls (FKA Georges Malaika Foundation School for Girls) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo attests to the ripple effect of clean, safe water on both Malaika and the surrounding community of Kalebuka. The Malaika School has increased its enrollment from the initial number of 106 girls in 2011 to last year’s number of 203 girls; in Fall 2015 the school will extend a warm welcome to 230 girls!
The school would not have the capacity to accommodate these girls without the well Voss Foundation funded in 2010, thanks to our Women Helping Women campaign on the then-empty campus. This was vital to the construction phase of the school; it provided the water needed for the cement and the school could not have been built without it.
Now, the well provides the school with clean water for their kitchens, gardens and bathrooms. It is the only source of irrigation for the fruits and vegetables in the school gardens, allowing the girls to eat healthy meals at school. The consistent availability of clean and safe water in the school allows Malaika to provide the girls with a healthy, hygienic and safe environment.
Jean Claude Kabey, father of Rose (Grade 3A), explains perfectly the ripple effect of this single well: “I could not afford to send Rose to school. Now she gets an education and food because of Malaika. There is nothing else like Malaika here, not even in the [nearest] city of Lubumbashi does anything compare to what our girls receive.”
The success of Malaika also translates outside of the school by improving the family dynamic. Young girls take on more respected roles within the family and they are looked upon as a chance for a better life.
Amos Chab, father of Sarah (Grade 3B), notes, “I never thought my daughter would go to such a school. I wasn’t able to study because it was so expensive but I am proud that my daughter will be different, she will have more in life than I did.”
We are very proud of all the good that has come about as a result of our well. We will continue to follow up with the Malaika School for Girls and the exceptional strides made on behalf of the young girls and the community of Kalebuka. We look forward to another great school year!