School and teacher accommodation at Kontonho

Current status (February 2024)

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The two buildings are making good progress! The larger one on the left is the school; the smaller one, right, is the teacher accommodation. See below for more pictures of the construction stages.

Handover to the education authority

Once completed, the building will be donated to the education authority, in return for its undertaking to staff it and run it as a school.

Rationale and planning for the project

Kontonho is a satellite community of Aframano, with about 170 people, about two hours walk from that village. Ordinary cars can’t drive there, because it’s a “hand-made” road with a very uneven surface and lots of obstacles; you either go on a motorbike, or on a high-axle vehicle with big wheels, like a delivery truck. Kwasi Alare first took us there in 2022, and we went again in 2023.

Kontonho needs a school for young children, specifically Kindergarten and the lower primary years. At the moment, these children have to walk to Aframano, a two hour journey, or to Kofiase, which is even further at 3-4 hours each way. Mark talked to Asoma, age 7, who is in Primary 2 in Aframano. He does the two-hour walk there and back every day. We also talked to Nana Afia, age 10 in Primary 4 in Kofiase. She does that 3-4 hour walk twice a day. If we can raise funds to build a school in Kontonho, this will be a huge contribution to their education. The pre-school in Kotonho is projected to allow access to education for 90 pupils.

Who will run the school?

Informal school
Similarly to the situation for the school in Aframano, we will hand over ownership of the school to the municipal department of education, which undertakes to staff it and run it as a school.

The community has made an informal school, pictured, so that young children incapable of making the two-hour walk can get some education. Making a proper building staffed by teachers will be support the delivery of education for local children.

Teacher accommodation

Teachers can’t commute to Kontonho, because it is too remote. Aframano is already very remote, and Kontonho is two hours by foot from there. Teachers can go by motor bike, but it is still too far to commute daily. To attract teachers, we will build three small rooms that can each accommodate two teachers who stay overnight during the week. Our planned borehole project will ensure that teachers can access clean water, and will also help assure that teachers will want to teach at the school.

Why is this project so expensive?

This project is about 50% more expensive than the school and teacher accommodation in Aframano. The school in Aframano has two classrooms with two offices, while the school in Kontonho will have three classrooms, two offices, and three bedrooms for teacher accommodation. Also, the teacher accommodation in Aframano consisted of building refurbishment, whereas here we will build from scratch.

Kontonho can be accessed only via a “hand-made” road with a very uneven surface and lots of obstacles. Normal cars can’t drive there. High-axle vehicle with big wheels, like delivery trucks, can get there with some difficulty. The community will spend some days cutting branches and removing bushes to widen the road, so that the large trucks can get access. But still, builders will charge more in Kontonho compared to Aframano, because of delivery and accessibility issues.

Inflation is another factor.

As in the case of the school in Aframano, we will make sure we adhere to the Department of Education’s construction standards, so that they will adopt the building and staff it and run it.

Progress photos

Planning and discussion (January 2023)

Fundraising (March-November 2023)

No photos to show of that ☻.

Clearing the site (November 2023)

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Making the blocks (December 2023)

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Planning and discussing the handover (December 2023)

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Building! (January 2024)

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Transporting and installing window frames (January 2024)

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Ready for the roof (February 2024)

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