PROJECTS SUPPORTED BY FOL:

1.

2017 Tuition Assistance Program (TAP)

Since 1999, FOL has been providing scholarships for pre-school, secondary and vocational education students recommended by their Peace Corps Volunteer teachers through the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP). In 2017, FOL continued to support TAP by supporting 105 Basotho students with scholarships to attend school.

2.

Let Girls Learn High School Housing Project (Malefiloane)

In support of Let Girls Learn, Malefiloane High School was given resources to build a girls’ hostel and teacher accommodations at the school. The hostel will enable girls to attend school easier, as it has many students coming from far villages that are at risk walking far distances at night and in the early morning in order to attend school. The hostel will provide a safer alternative to the current situation where oftentimes girls are taken for early marriage and/or can be assaulted on the way to school.

In addition, there is a lack of housing close to the school for teachers to live, thus making them commute from far distances as well. Building teachers accommodations at the

school is being done with an aim to increase the time they are able to spend at school and with the students, thus improving learning. It will also provide safety to the girls living at the new hostel. The community is contributing to this project by collecting stones for

the walls and donating other building materials. Members of 10 surrounding villages are helping with donations and labor. There is hope that building the hostel and teacher accommodations will improve the results of the school and increase girls’ access to education.

3.

Let Girls Learn Boarding House Project (Quthing)

This project aims to equip the high school in the Quthing district of Lesotho. It provides beds and mattresses to 64 girls who are double orphans so they all have a bed to sleep in each year. This grant aims to help all of these girls stay in school and further their education. The community committed to contribute at least 25% of the cost of beds and mattresses by paying for transportation, food and supervisory fees, and future maintenance.

4.

A Hall With Many Benefits (Maseru)

This project was to construct a hall project for a primary school in Maseru. The school used an

existing structure on the school campus and renovated it. Steps of this process included cleaning, demolition, building new walls, windows, and ceiling, installing new doors, painting, and cementing new floors. The two objectives of this project were to create a safe place for the entire school to gather and to generate income for the school by renting the space out to community members. Community members will collect stones, water, and help with demolition of the existing walls. This project has the potential to impact the school for many years to come as it will enable them to collect funds to help support orphans and vulnerable children within the school community.

5.

Let Girls Learn Community Toilet Initiative (Mokhotlong)

This Mokhotlong High School previously had five working toilets to serve approximately 330 girls, 90 of which live in a boarding house on campus. During class breaks, lines to the latrines were so long many girls were not able to use the facilities before the break ends. Because of this, girls walk down the adjacent hill and relieve themselves in the open, which has had a huge impact on the surrounding community and school. The community has repeatedly complained to both the school’s principal as well as to the regional chief. The Community Toilet Initiative aimed to build 10 new female toilets on campus, which would triple the number available. The high school had some available resources, but lacked the funds to get this project started.Quotes were obtained from three local construction companies. The company chosen was local, competent, and competitively priced. They agreed to hire laborers from the surrounding communities in order to promote capacity building, through employment and increasing jobs skills

6.

Rebuilding Classrooms (Qacha’s Nek)

This project supported a school in Qacha’s Nek distract which serves over 20 villages. With over 80% of the students being classified as Orphans and Vulnerable Children. The school provides the students a safe place and an opportunity to achieve higher education, which will greatly impact their future endeavors. In 2012, the school was hit with a strong wind storm that destroyed the staff room and eight classrooms. This not only reduced the ability of the school to serve the overwhelming number of students from surrounding villages who are in need of a secondary education, it also made learning more difficult for students as classrooms became crowded. This grant assisted in building two classrooms at the high school. With the addition of the classrooms, teachers have been able physically reach students and also better serve them by lowering the student-to-teacher ratio. Students are able to do group work and hands-on activities inside the classroom, which is crucial specially during winter months. This contributes to the betterment of performance of students and a better student and teacher relationship. Students are also able to focus on their learning as they will be given a safe place to do so. The parents of students, teachers, school board, and school staff agreed to assist in the building of the two classrooms by contributing to the cost and with some community members helped with labor. The community is willing to work hard in providing the students with a better learning environment and to help them achieve a higher education.

7.

High School Computers (Botha-Bothe)

This project is aimed to provide a computer lab in order to provide better education for students at a Botha Bothe high school. The computer lab seeks to enable the teaching of computer literacy classes and increase awareness of global circumstances. The community helped with the set-up of the computer lab room which includes tables, a router, and electrical wiring. The grant was for the computers themselves. The project hope to positively impact the students’ performance in multiple classes. School staff plan to pair computer literacy classes with life skills education in order to create a more culturally aware body of students that have access to information all over the world. Computer skills will also allow students to be more competitive while looking for jobs. Thus, allowing students to use computers will be valuable in their long-term success.

8.

High School Staff Room Construction (Khotsang)

The focus of this project was to fund the construction of a staff room for the secondary and high school in Khotsong. Prior to construction, teachers shared space with the primary school teachers, creating a lack of organization and insufficient space for more teachers to be hired. For this project, the community contributed transportation and labor, and the school itself assisted in funding a portion of the project’s materials. Overall, this project’s impact is not only the high school but also the primary school, allowing for all teachers to be given more space, their own desks, and the supervisor their own office and storage space for sports equipment, educational tools and its supply of books.

9.

High School Last Born Block (Botha-Bothe)

This project supported a high school is located in a rural section of Botha-Bothe district, which serves students from form A through form E (grades 8 through 12). Because of its more central location, students come from all around neighboring villages, some having to walk as much as two hours just to attend school. Students from 59 villages around eastern Botha-Bothe attend high school classrooms that had been overflowing with students, having only seven rooms to fit eight streams of students. A group of form C students had to use an extra supply room for learning. Thus, the high school was in need of more classrooms to teach its growing number of students. This grant’s goal is to construct a new classroom using as many resources and as much labor within the community as possible. Teachers have been stressed from the lack of room in the classrooms, while learners had not been receiving quality education from a lack of time able to be spent with those students that have learning challenges. As the project proceeded there were no changes in the initial objectives, and many goals were achieved, such as: drumming up interest in the community for the new building, teachers’ attitudes were improved, students’ morale increased, and construction of a brand-new building happened extremely quickly. Capacities and skills built were teachers looking ahead to an improved teaching environment, learners seeing the results of hard work, motivating them to keep working hard, and the laborers honed their skills in construction and benefit from their own work.

10.

Let Girls Learn Renovations for a Primary School (Maseru)

This project supports a small private school in Lesotho’s Maseru region. The teachers have been motivated to improve the quality of education but face challenges due to a lack of resources and adverse learning environments. After years of neglect, the classrooms and hall are in need of repair and new furniture. The goal of the project was to create a safer learning environment where girls and boys can thrive and learn. Currently the broken windows and doors in classrooms and the hall cause adverse learning conditions. Severe weather conditions increase risk of illness and cause many distractions throughout the day. A repaired hall would become safer and more conducive for community activities such as club meetings, future GlOW Camps, empowerment programs, support groups, etc. A more comfortable classroom environment and renovated hall will allow many girls to gather together and learn about topics such as gender equality, HIV, sexual and reproductive health, human rights, etc. This project was ultimately extremely successful for the community. The project has immensely improved the conditions of the primary school and created a safer space for children to learn, and teachers to provide quality education. The community was involved throughout every step of this project which includes participating in meetings, offering advice, and providing donations and support towards this project. All of the necessary repairs and renovations to the school were completed, and stakeholders continued to plan for the future by setting sustainable and attainable goals. The students and parents have been very involved in the planning and implementation of his project. The community has already been making use of our renovated school in various ways. A Life Skills Workshop for teachers was successfully delivered in the Hall which presented information about new ways to teach women’s empowerment and HIV education in local schools. In addition, a local sports club has been utilizing the space to educate about Life Skills topics such as Gender Issues, Sexual Health, HIV/AIDS, etc.

11.

Two New Classrooms (Botha-Bothe)

This project served to build classrooms to decrease the number of students per class. The grant was not large enough to pay for two entire classrooms, though the principal arranged a meeting with the school board where they agreed to make up the difference. In addition, the community has provided windows and timber for the construction of the buildings. Girls make up over 61% of the students at the school, and in the lower grades the disparity is much greater. The vision was that by increasing the ratio of teachers to students in the lowest grade at the school, the general education will improve and less girls will drop out as they advance through the upper grades. Ultimately, a classroom was constructed and the teachers and students are very excited to use it for the 2018 school year. Due to a problem with the initial builder, the project had to switch to a slightly more expensive builder and thus build only one classroom, not two. Still, the school was able to decrease class size. As a classroom, the building will be here for generations to come. There will be a higher teacher to student ratio now. Also, several teachers helped with the grant writing which was valuable. In the future, they will be able to apply and oversee projects using the lessons learned from this experience.

12.

Let Girls Learn Primary Seating Structure (Botha-Bothe)

This project is for school in rural Botha Bothe which has been in existence since 1931. Although there are several structures at the school, there is nowhere suitable for the children to sit while outside. Lesotho is currently experiencing a drought which in turn, makes it difficult for the students to keep their uniforms and selves clean on a daily basis. The seating structure built through this project enables the students to sit together as a class to work on lessons, homework and for studying for tests. It’s also a place for them to eat lunch and to socialize with their friends. The addition of one wall with a chalkboard makes the structure perfect for an outside classroom and learning environment. The Primary School has an enrollment of 221 students, 116 or 52% for those students are girls. As it is customary in Lesotho for females to wash and clean clothes and even the school grounds and classrooms, it is felt that the school environment might also maintain more cleanliness on a daily basis and the female students will therefore spend less time cleaning and more time on school work. In addition, the roof will shield the students from the hot sun or rain and allow them to sit away from dirt and weeds. This classroom will allow our students to perform better in every subject that is taught at this school.

13.

Toilets for Primary School

A primary school built two toilets (pit latrines), one for boys, and the other for girls. Each pit will had six separate toilets. The buildings were built with concrete blocks for the walls and granite stone foundations. The floors were be laid with meshed wire and cement. The roofing was corrugated steel. Each of the toilets have been separated into stalls by brick walls and are covered by a front wall that will have a single exit door at one end. The length of each pit is 2.5m. The purpose of the project was to make a strong and comfortable structure that offers both privacy and comfort to the students. It is believed that this project will be of particular benefit to the female students, providing them with a safe and sanitary space to use the toilet. By providing this space, the school hopes to improve our students’ self-confidence and comfort in the school environment.

14.

Ketane Primary School

Ketane Primary School is a 5-room school with a student population of 221 in grades 1-7. The student and teacher population are very hardworking and as a result they have earned many awards on state exams over the years. However, the school’s latrines had been compromised for at least 3 years and urgently needed to be replaced. This project successfully created a new structure with 3 additional toilets for boys and 3 for girls.

15.

Reach Your Dreams Organisation Leather Workshop

This project was designed by the Reach Your Dreams Organisation (RYDO) in Mafeteng to establish a multi-functional leather-workshop to offer and produce leather materials. The products and services vary from leather belts, sophisticated leather wallets, hats, and shoes as well as advanced leather bags designed for IPADs, notebooks, cosmetics etc. This operation engages in refurbishment and decoration to the following but not limited to; renovation of houses with unique leather designs on special orders, produce smart leather seat covers for motor vehicles and sophisticated leather sofas.

Objectives include:

• To address national youth unemployment and poverty

• To produce and make leather materials accessible and affordable to local market

• To empower youth with vocational and technical skills for self-reliance

• To encourage and instill the spirit of entrepreneurship amongst youth

• To increase the RYDO sustainability so that they may continue to benefit their community.

16. Lesotho Nutrition Initiative’s Pack Away Hunger Project

To help combat malnutrition resulting from the food crisis, students and faculty from Wittenberg University partnered with Pack Away Hunger, a non-profit organization based in Indianapolis, to obtain a nutrition supplement (a special combination of 21 different vitamins and minerals) and prepare food packages. FOL support Wittenberg with shipping the packages to the World Food Program and Touching Tiny Lives for distribution to vulnerable children in Mokhotlong. Many of the children who receive the meals are either orphans or HIV positive. Many are in critical situations with regards to malnutrition and stunting

1. 2016 Tuition Assistance Program (TAP)

Since 1999, FOL has been providing scholarships for pre-school, secondary and vocational education students recommended by their Peace Corps Volunteer teachers through the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP). In 2016, FOL continued to support TAP by donating $9400 for scholarships for needy students from 15 Volunteers’ schools.

2. PCPP – Community Primary School Classroom

FOL donated $1000 to help fund the construction of a 4th grade classroom at the Communi- ty Primary School, which replaced a makeshift storeroom that the school had been using. The poor structure of the building exposed children to extreme temperatures in the summer and winter months. Often the class had to be moved outside to avoid the unbearable heat of the summer or to sit in the sun during the cold days of winter. By building a new classroom with better materials, the school hopes to improve the learning environment so that it will result in improved grade performance and greater participation by both teacher and student.

3. CPP – Community Tech Lab

FOL donated $1000 towards the construction of a science and technical skills lab in a remote secondary school. This addition would allow the school to be upgraded to a high school, which is desperately needed in the area. Forty percent of the student population of this school are orphans, who cannot afford to pursue their education outside their remote villages. The lab is planned to be a multi-purpose technical skills shop to prepare students for entry into technical colleges. The project also included the purchase of extra cooking pots for the kitch- en to accommodate the anticipated increase in students and upgrading the school’s solar

energy capacity to enable the tech lab to support applications requiring electricity.

4. PCPP – Leribe Water Borehole

FOL contributed $1000 towards the construction of a water borehole for a community asso- ciation in a rural village of Lesotho. In this village, unemployment is a serious problem that leaves job-seekers helpless, depressed, and unproductive. To tackle this problem, a group of university-educated young adults from the village formed a local association to create jobs and opportunities in the village while also providing goods and services with those jobs, with a focus on agricultural projects. The association raised funds through member contributions and by raising chickens to sell during holiday seasons and used the funds to acquire land on which the borehole was constructed.

5. PCPP – Express Yourself! Thaba-Tseka GLOW Camp

FOL donated $966.13 to support this GLOW (Girls Leading Our World) Camp. The aim of the camp was for students and counterparts to learn from trained professionals about top-
ics important to their health and well-being, and how self-expression comes from a place
of confidence and love for oneself. Eleven local organizations donated their time, resources, skills, and knowledge to the 3-day camp. Topics included leadership, sexual and reproduc- tive health and rights, careers, healthy relationships and communication, and self-expression using different mediums of art. To attain sustainable GLOW ideals, a session on how to repli- cate a GLOW Camp was presented to the local teachers and select students to share with their school.

6. PCPP – School Solar Power

FOL donated $1000 to the Solar Power Project, which aims to provide electricity to a rural secondary school. Currently, the school has a generator, but the upkeep and petrol costs make it impractical to use regularly. The project will install four 135 watt solar panels on the roof of the school. Access to electricity would improve the quality of education by facilitating com- puters and printers and by allowing for night classes for students and community members. The use of a printer and computer means the teachers can use more paper for testing. Cur- rently, students are tested on paper only two times a year; the rest of the year tests are given on the chalkboard, which makes it difficult to practice reading comprehension and other in depth testing methods because teachers do not have the time or space to write entire passages on the board while still writing questions to go along with the passages. The limited testing on paper handicaps the students’ preparation for the Junior Certificate Exam, an extremely arduous paper exam. Night classes will focus on literacy classes for community members.

7. Qholaqhoe Mountain Connection

In response to the food crisis caused by severe drought in Lesotho, FOL donated $2500 to Qholaqhoe Mountain Connections (QMC) to help grandmothers from Likoting Orphan Vil- lage purchase food for about 100 orphans in their care for 6 months. In September, two QMC board members traveled to Lesotho to assess the impact of the food crisis and food supply for the orphans in Likoting Orphan Village. Unfortunately, they found that after three years of drought many of the projects that QMC supported were no longer viable; crops planted had failed, animals raised had died, and several key community members involved with the project had died or left to pursue other opportunities. QMC ultimately determined that after a multi-year relationship with Likoting Orphan Village and the grandmothers, it could no longer support their efforts to provide food for orphans. QMC will continue to support other projects in the community.

8. Pack Away Hunger (Wittenberg University)

To help combat malnutrition resulting from the food crisis, students and faculty from Witten- berg University partnered with Pack Away Hunger, a non-profit organization based in India- napolis, to obtain a nutrition supplement (a special combination of 21 different vitamins and minerals) and prepare food packages. Wittenberg shipped the packages to the World Food Program and Touching Tiny Lives for distribution to vulnerable children in Mokhotlong.

FOL donated $3000 to this project, which had a total cost of approximately $250,000.

9. Food Parcel Program

FOL donated $2,000 to a program run by the Thorn family that provides food parcels to needy orphan-headed households. The donation helped support food parcels for 16 house- holds for 6 months. The Thorns, who own the trading post lodges in Roma and Ramabanta, have been personally supporting numerous families in need for a long time, and donations like FOL’s allow them to help more families.

10. Qabanyane ACL Primary School

FOL donated $3200 to help build a kitchen for this small rural school in Mohale’s Hoek. The new kitchen replaced a shelter made of sticks and plastic in which women who made the school lunches were cooking. In 2015, FOL funded a project to replace the school’s roof,

which had been damaged in a storm.

11. Little Angels

Started by Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Rose Paradise in 2008, Little Angels is a daycare center for 35-50 orphans under the age of 5 in Thaba-Bosiu. Children are fed, receive edu- cation instruction and get medical care. FOL had a close relationship with Rose and helped fund the center for 2 years. FOL is now helping Michelle, Rose’s daughter, to continue to fund the center by sending money her church raises to help with Little Angels’ operating costs. This

year church members donated $1500 through FOL.