What’s going on at the school in 2017:
What’s going on at the school in 2017:
You can buy tickets with the PayPal buttons above and to the right, or make a check payable to Dougbe River School and mail to Dougbe River School, P.O. Box 18017, Cleveland Heights, OH 44118. Reservations can be made online by sending your contact information and the number of guests to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The contractor is making excellent progress on the construction of our new cafeteria and kitchen building, which will be ready for use by the start of the next school year (2017/2018). The cafeteria will be the largest room on campus, accommodating a gathering of up to 200 people. Construction costs are projected to be within budget, but additional funds are needed for tables, benches, and kitchen equipment, including a charcoal cook stove. We estimate these items will cost approximately $6,000. If you would like to help us outfit our beautiful new cafeteria and kitchen, please send your contributions to:
Dougbe River School, P.O. Box 18017, Cleveland Heights, OH 44106
At our June meeting the DRS Board elected two new members – Margaret Mwale and Rev. Ogden White. Margaret is Associate for Community Development and Constituent Relations for the Self Development of People committee at the national headquarters for the Presbyterian Church (USA). Ogie is a long-time member of the Presbytery of the Western Reserve, where he has held numerous leadership positions, including PWR Moderator and Chairman of Committee on Ministry. If you would like to serve on the DRS Board, or perhaps on one of our committees (Operations, Development, Finance, or Strategic Planning) please contact John Luttermoser (email@example.com) and let him know your area of interest.
Innocent Sore was one of the first employees of the Dougbe River School of Liberia. Innocent began his tenure at the school as Security Chief. But when his schedule allowed, Innocent also tended the school gardens and assisted with chores on the farm. Last year we made a significant investment in the school’s farm, doubling the tillable acreage and planting rice for the first time. Innocent assumed the position of Assistant Farm Manager earlier this year, and is leading the efforts of local volunteers and teachers who assist with farm tasks. Our search for a Farm Manager with agricultural education and experience continues, but in the meantime, it’s great to have Innocent overseeing this important operation. As a result of his leadership, our rice crop was very successful, yielding enough rice to feed our students for two years!
In early April, our School hosted an Academic Challenge competition. Participating teams came from Zwedru, the county seat, 28 miles away, and from Ziah Town, which is 8 miles from our school. We are delighted to report that our students took top honors, scoring more points than any other team. Needless to say, the challengers were surprised at the outcome, but the event was fun for all, and the visitors enjoyed their day trip to the country.
Our school has a new principal. Henry H. Flomo comes to us from the Confidence School of Liberia where he was acting principal. Mr. Flomo has a “C” certificate from the Liberian Ministry of Education, and taught school for many years before returning to college to complete his Bachelor’s degree. In 2015 he graduated from the University of Liberia, majoring in Public Administration and Accounting. Mr. Flomo replaces Mr. Charles Koko who will move to the newly created position of farm manager. Mr. Koko has a degree in Agriculture, and will focus on increasing crop yields at our recently expanded 15-acre farm adjacent to the school.
Thanks to all of the individuals and churches that donated to our Campus Improvement campaign this summer. The Presbytery of the Western Reserve designated $15,000 in mission funds to match your donations, and we now have a total of $30,000 to make our dreams a reality. During the next year we’ll be building an improved kitchen and a new cafeteria for our students and faculty. Additional projects include new “right-sized” classroom furniture for our youngest students, library shelves and furniture, and some much needed classroom repairs.
The farm project is coming along, and this benefits the school in multiple ways. Since we feed the children breakfast and lunch every school day, the crops reduce our expenses and diversify their diet. We’re already growing enough to have some food to sell, too. We’re growing rice, plaintain, yams, kidney beans, soy beans, cassava, corn, and more. Some of the staff stays on campus during the summer vacation (which is only about a month and a half this year) to work on the farm.
Yeah, I know we’ve used that headline before.
Isaac Monah got a chance to visit the school in late July, and brought these home. Classes were not in session — they will resume September 7 after a brief, seven-week summer break — but there was a lot going on.
The Dougbe River Presbyterian School re-opened on Monday, March 2, after being closed for seven months as a precaution against the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.
Some schools in Liberia re-opened today (Monday, February 16). Others, according to a report by the Monrovia newspaper Front Page Africa, are waiting until March 2.
We’re in between. We’re ready to open apart from the fact that our teachers are in Zieh Town, the hub of Konobo District, to learn more about teaching good hygiene and screening students who may be ill. Classes at the Dougbe River School will resume when the teachers return, possibly before the end of the week.
Here are some reports about what’s going on with Liberian schools today:
The Liberian government has decided to delay the re-opening of schools in the country to February 16. Schools had been scheduled to re-open February 2.
Here’s an article about the decision from the Reuters wire service, which says the action was taken “in order to better prepare safety measures against the Ebola virus, which has killed more than 3,650 people in the country but now appears to be receding.” Reuters article
The Dougbe River School and the the surrounding villages in Twarbo Region have been outfitted with hand-washing stations to prevent the spread of disease. Tiyatien Health, the organization that sends health-care workers into the villages, undertook educational efforts about hygiene and Ebola prevention on our campus last spring, when the outbreak was in its early stages and the school was still open. Grand Gedeh County remains nearly untouched by the outbreak.
Student registration continues while we wait to see if the February 16 date will hold, or there will be another postponement.