Elva Kennedy, BA
By Elva Kennedy, BA on August 05, 2015

Investing In the Future of School Children in Africa

Where It All Began

Classrooms for Africa’s mission is to help poor and disadvantaged African communities provide high quality, value-based education.

Some children in countries like Uganda don’t have access to good education due to a lack of classrooms and insufficient facilities at their existing schools. Classrooms for Africa, a Canadian charitable society founded in 2008, was started to:

  • Provide direct assistance for the building of physical classrooms and auxiliary buildings (i.e. money for the “bricks and mortar” of classroom walls, roofs, ablution blocks, etc.);
  • Link educators in Canada with schools in Africa;
  • Improve teacher training; and
  • Partner with other organizations to provide health, agriculture and development support.

An original classroom structure at Ebenezer Bright Primary School in Uganda.

Silvacom’s Role

In partnership with the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI), we became involved in Africa by helping fund a program for children that had dropped out of school and were at risk. After that, we helped purchase land and a teacher-training centre in Uganda for the Timothy Girls High School. Under the leadership of Ray Sutton, past headmaster of the Pacific Academy in Surrey, British Columbia, we then helped establish Classrooms for Africa. Ray is now Classrooms for Africa’s Chairman of the Board.

Volunteering time and providing financial support to this worthwhile cause ties directly into Silvacom’s purpose, core values, and our strategy for social responsibility. We want to make a positive difference in the world through a focus on educating children who have few opportunities.

Since starting in 2008 until 2020, Classrooms for Africa has undertaken in excess of 150 building projects, completing the equivalent of over 450 classrooms. This has benefited close to 23,000 students and their teachers in 76 schools located in eight countries throughout sub-Saharan Africa.

IMG_0326 (2)Inside a new Classrooms for Africa funded classroom at Ebenezer Bright Primary School.

12 Years Going Strong

Bob Morton, one of Silvacom’s founding partners and one of Classrooms for Africa’s board members, just returned from Uganda where he visited 15 school projects. He traveled with Ray throughout south and western Uganda where they visited a number of schools that Silvacom has directly helped, including Rwentutu Christian School, Victorious Primary and Nursery School, Ebenezer Bright Primary School, Hope Comprehensive High School and Eagle’s Wings High School.

There are new classroom projects in the planning stages and many projects awaiting funding. This week, Tom Grabowski, co-founder, now Chief Executive Officer of Silvacom, will visit schools in both Uganda and Kenya.

IMG_0321 (2) One of Silvacom's recently completed projects - a classroom block at Ebenezer Bright Primary School.

For more information visit the Classrooms for Africa website or follow the Classrooms for Africa blog.

Please contact us if you’d like to hear more about this story.

Title picture - Silvacom's Bob Morton with school children at Ebenezer Bright Primary School.


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