A good example of a boarding school is Silgich Hill Academy. Silgich is a primary school placed in the west part of Kenya, around 5-6 hours from Ngong; near Eldoret town and only few hours away from the Ugandan border. Paul Koech, famous kenyan runner, built the school since there was no school in the area, and it opened in 2004 with 80 pupils, 5 teachers and 3 members of the staff.
The area were Silgich is placed is very green and rich on nutritious food as the people there live from the agriculture. Most of the food served at the school comes from Silgich own farm, they have mais fields, chickens, cows and rabbits. They also have wide installations for the children to play and to live in, and it’s far from town so the children don’t have the temptation to skip classes. The place counts with electricity and water, and they teach the children how to keep their things clean.
School starts at 7am and goes on until 4.30pm. There are three breaks: morning tea at 10am, lunch and evening tea. The children are between five and fourteen years old. The school is semi private, which makes sure that the level of education is higher than usual. And in contrast to most of the primary schools, English is the main language at Silgich Hill Academy while Swahili is a subject.
We choose to send sponsored children there because that part of Kenya is completely different to where the children are used to live, that way they can forget about the slums and focus on their education. The difference of a child who goes to public school and the one who goes to boarding school is huge, apart of the safe environment, the teachers are very good, the children are happier and healthier, and the mothers knowing their children are safe helps to improve their health and they have the opportunity to work more or start businesses to get a better life for their families. That’s the reason we always encourage our sponsors to send the children to boarding schools.
From Living Positive Kenya we try to do a special follow up on them because our children come from a very difficult environment, with many family problems which affects them. Our social workers make sure the children are doing well at their schools, they also do counselling as the children need to be rehabilitated from the place they come and adapt themselves to a new environment where they will find opportunities for their future.
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