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El Centro Kiwanis Club supports education in Uganda

Nov 04, 2016

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In 1987, a school was built, bringing promise of education and important social skills to children in Nyamongo, Uganda. But that was it. The school was built without ever installing windows or doors, and nearly 30 years later it remained just a shell of a building. The cement floors and blackboards were in disrepair. Roofs existed but needed replaced. And there were no desks—until the El Centro, California, Kiwanis Club and Burning Bush International invested in renovating the school and restoring the hope of its 600 students.

The El Centro club president, Alex Cardenas, and its members quickly committed to the project once they learned about the neglect of the school. They hosted fundraisers to finance the refurbishing of two classrooms but needed assistance to update the remaining five and the principal’s office. Thanks to the support of our donors, the Kiwanis Children’s Fund was able to grant funding to help the club finish the improvements.

Today the primary school has a happy ending: Renovations are complete and the students attend class in an environment conductive to learning.

“Education is seen by Ugandan society as the best way to move out of poverty,” says El Centro club member Jim Rhodes. “As the school’s facilities were improved, so was the hope of attaining a better life."


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Jim is the president of Burning Bush International, a non-profit that provides deep-water wells and other humanitarian relief to several regions in Uganda. He travelled to the school’s opening in September 2016.

The club also received funding from the California-Nevada-Hawaii District Foundation in addition to donations from the club to make this project happen.

The Nyamongo, Uganda primary school is one example of how Kiwanians can extend their impact near and far through the Kiwanis Children’s Fund.