One year ago, Father Makuza Alexis started a school in Kinyinya called Saint Benoit Nursery and Primary School. His vision back in 2008 was to come up with a project on the basis of helping people. He had a pig and chicken farm. He didn’t want to stop there so he decided to do something that would contribute to the country’s development.
“There’s a time I would see bikes passing by my house with very young children very early in the morning on the way going to school. Seeing children aged between 3–5 years struggling to stay awake in order not to fall off the bikes hit me and since then I have always wanted to help people especially children. I saw this as my responsibility to make a change in their lives” he said.
He started the school with only 45 students, some having been street kids. This year, it doubled to about 90 students. According to him, the school came as an answer to the children living in that neighborhood, some were not in school because they couldn’t afford the school fees and the others whose parents could afford the fees, didn’t have transport so you would find them struggling every day going to school and going back home.
“Education is the road that children follow to reach their full potential in life” he added.
With the help of Africa Improved foods (AIF), a company that manufactures fortified blended foods recently donated “Nootri Toto” to the school. Students need quality education where they can learn and develop, this can’t be achieved without caring about their health.
Father Makuza greatly appreciates this offer from AIF, as this has come as an answer to the health of the children most especially his students. “I believe that if everyone started the day with porridge, it would have a significant impact on their health. Eating a bowl of porridge everyday can help transform the health of these children and lead to better growth” he added.
A child’s early age is a critical period because, without enough food and a variety of complementary foods with the right nutrients, children are at risk of malnutrition, which can have a permanent impact on their physical and cognitive development.
According to Makuza, he says this donation will not only help the children to concentrate at school but support their families too, by lessening the worry of having to provide breakfast or even lunch every day for them.
“These kinds of donations give me the motivation to keep moving,” he said. He is planning on expanding the school up to primary six as well as have playgrounds for even those other street kids in the neighborhood.
The day couldn’t get any better without these charming kids singing and dancing to traditional songs for the guests. Their teachers ushered them to where the visitors were standing to give the guests a warm goodbye.