We started the day with a visit to the Nandroumai District School. A feeder road from the main highway took us past farms and homes in Uluisila and Yandua. My ancestors moved here after their indenture was over in the late 1920’s.
Nandroumai District School has 108 students. The Head Teacher Mr Joeli Duri is retiring this year. This is a boarding school which is supported by Shangri-la Resort‘s Embrace Program. Parents drop their children off on Mondays and they return home on Fridays. Some of these children accompany their parents on horseback to get to school. The library at this school needs some new resources – some of the books in the small collection needs to be weeded out.
Our next stop was Naidovi – we worked at this school last year. The school was just coming back to normal after the devastating floods which hit the area in March. A number of classrooms were out of action earlier because renovation work was being carried out through the Australian Quality Education Program. The kindergarten was temporary accommodation for the workman who were carrying out repair work in the school. After the floods the school had received a lot of donations of resources from various agencies including our network of relatives and friends. They were still sitting in boxes – now the school had another challenge in terms of how to manage these resources. However, on this day there was a lot activity at the school. The staff and students were all too busy preparing for the inter-school Sanatan Dharamsports. This is an event that is exclusively for students of this religion. This quote is quite relavant here –
SPORT IS A UNIVERSAL LANGUAGE THAT CAN BRING PEOPLE TOGETHER, NO MATTER WHAT THEIR ORIGIN, BACKGROUND, RELIGIOUS BELIEFS OR ECONOMIC STATUS. Kofi Annan, United Nations Secretary General
One positive outcome of our initiative was that in some of the classrooms we visited, all children had a library book that they had borrowed. They were very eager to read their books. Some of the teachers had developed a strategy to keep track of the books that the children had borrowed. As the record’s show, the floods were a major disruption to the teaching program at this school.