Through the cooperation among World Vision Hong Kong, World Vision Lao PDR, local authorities, and parents, the construction work of a new primary school building was completed, and handed over to Phine District Education Office and community partners on 17 January, 2017 in Savannakhet Province.
The students, teachers and parents were excited to join the primary school handover ceremony.
"Before, it hard to access to our village because we have to cross two rivers. We only had one school building with two classrooms,” said Mr Phet Sisamoud, 12 years old. “My friends and I are very happy with our new school building because it more comfortable and will also be safe and dry in the rainy season.”
As part of an integrated community development approach, World Vision worked with the community to install two bridges, six water pumps, and several village support funds.
Mr. Somely Phansoulinthong, representative from the District Governor of Phine office, offered his sincere thanks to World Vision International in Lao PDR for seeking the funds to improve the quality of education in Phine district.
“The new school building is very necessary for motivating children to go to school. Children will also learn better in a nice environment and safe space,” says Mr. Phansoulinthong.
“It was difficult for the school children to learn during the rainy season because [the roof] was leaking and there was not enough room for the student,” Mr. Lamphern, the village chief shared. “Sometimes we had to stop class and let children go home when it was windy and rainy.”
The old school building was built using bamboo with a grass roof.
Improving the quality of education is a priority for World Vision’s work in Lao PDR. The school building now has 3 classrooms with tables for students and teachers, cabinets for documents, and blackboards.
“I believe the new primary school building will encourage more children to go to school and improve learning outcomes,” Mr. Lampern added.
“We have waited to see the completion of the new school building and send our children and grandchildren to school,” shares Khue, 45, on behalf of the community. “We don’t have to worry about their safety when it rains.”
“On behalf of villagers, teachers, and school children, I would like to thank donors and government partners who contributed to building this school. We are committed to maintaining it well and encouraging parents to send their children to school,” said Mr. Lamphern, at the opening ceremony.
Mr. Christopher Herrink, Director of World Vision International Lao PDR credited the financial support to World Vision Hong Kong, as well as a strong support from government and community parents in making this effort a success.
“We want to see change for children. We believe each of you will have a bright future. I would like to say thank you to our government partners, to our community partners, and most importantly, our child partners. Our big success today is the new school building,” Herrink said. “Education is more than just a building or wall or a roof, education is about learning. It is about asking questions and developing your mind and your body and your spirit. A good learner asks questions. Ask your teacher, ask your parents, ask your friends.”
World Vision International works in five provinces in Lao PDR. Recently, World Vision provided technical and financial support to 6 school buildings in Phine District.