|A fresh start in a brand-new classroom - a first for many of the students. Photo: Sophie Preisch|
The hangars make up eight additional classrooms where 355 students will receive lessons. The building is positioned behind the existing school, which fortunately did not suffer any damage from the earthquake and is still fully operational.
|The original school building was not damaged by the earthquake, but the increased number of students made additional space necessary. - Photo: Sophie Preisch|
|In Haiti, education is often more costly than average families can afford - free education is practically unheard of. - Photo: Sophie Preisch|
|The tent classrooms were a good interim solution - but they were dirty, stuffy and hard to keep calm in. - Photo: Sophie Preisch|
"The inauguration of this new building is the first step towards a more individual and child-oriented education with fewer students per class", says Max Lamesch, Public Funding Coordinator of SOS Children‘s Villages in Haiti. He also coordinated a cooperation with the German embassy in Haiti, who donated the cost of purchasing individual desk-chairs.
The first few days after the inauguration show a clear difference in the quality of classes. "The classrooms are cooler and the air circulates much better than it did in the tents. Furthermore, the children have more individual space with the new chairs", says a fifth grade teacher.
|Donations from the German Red Cross and the German embassy made these improvements possible. - Photo: Sophie Preisch|
It is this difference that made the opening of the hangars on Friday such a joyful event. After the inauguration by a priest, the ribbon was cut and the event went on in the community hall of the children's village. SOS Children's Villages also awarded certificates to organizations who had offered their valuable support in order to provide better conditions to SOS students.