Trustee and volunteer visit

In October 2016 Friends of Amasango trustee Kate Meir and first-time volunteer Hannah Peters spent a week at Amasango.

Kate’s impressions

As ever I was made extremely welcome by Linda Ngamlana and all the staff, and the singing and worship in staff briefing each morning was inspirational. I was joined by a young first-time volunteer, Hannah Peters, who spent two weeks supporting learners in maths and English. Hannah had such a great time she is going back for longer in 2017.

In the classroom

I found the school in good heart: there is a calm atmosphere and good learning going on. I was invited to help support learning English with Grades 4 to 7, and I was really encouraged by how engaged the learners were, and by the standard of teaching. Having consistent Class Aids in each class throughout the day really helps things to run smoothly. The numbers attending school are lower than the school would like, and the staff are trying to encourage young people to come to school. I think that non-attendance is indication of the hopelessness these children growing up in such poverty and deprivation experience.

When I asked Grade 6 learners what they most enjoy about Amasango they were really positive about the school, responding with things such as: ‘the friends I have,’ ‘the lessons,’ ‘the teachers – they care for us.’

Outside class

During my stay the under 13s football team won a match against another school. There are two pottery wheels being used in the pottery, and several sewing machines being well used. So the holistic and vocational aspects of the education are continuing and developing well.

I taught the children Christian songs with actions. On my last morning, at breaktime, two small boys came up to me and asked to sing the song again, and we spent some time singing and doing the actions to their great delight. I found this very moving in that the children were behaving just like children; they are experiencing security and care at Amasango that is allowing them to grow and develop.

PS from Hannah

Anyone who has visited the school will agree that no two days are ever the same. To say that I didn’t find this experience challenging would be lying, however, I was truly inspired by several of the staff at the school and their passion for helping these children, even with so few resources.

One highlight of my trip was watching the school’s football team. Whilst we were driving through the township to the game, the energy on the bus was electric. To see the lads out of the classroom playing around and acting how children should act was lovely to see.

I knew I wasn’t going to change every child’s life I came into contact with at Amasango but if I could inspire one child to come back to school the next day and have them leave school with a smile on their face, I knew I had done what I set out to achieve.