The first week of a new term at Ratu Meli Memorial School (RMMS) can be somewhat hectic as teachers and students get back into the school routine. The teachers have a lot to organize and the children are full of energy. For GVI, it’s also a busy week. For many of the volunteers on the education project, this is their first week of school so there is a lot to get acquainted with. The various tasks expected of the volunteers each week as well as the new environment of a remote Fijian school can make the first week quite stressful.
However, all our new volunteers have risen to the challenge and have helped the school get ready for the new term. Every class has a volunteer who assists the teacher and helps with the successful one-on-one program that GVI has been running for almost eighteen months. The new volunteers have also completed a series of project specific training session to help them get the most out of their time on the project.
The teachers and children have been excited to see all the work done by the construction and education teams during the school holiday . The new vegetable gardens and the composting toilets are a welcome addition to the school compound and volunteers and teachers will be working hard to ensure that they are used properly over the coming weeks. With our 2013 goal of having Ratu Meli recognized as a “Blue School” by the International Rainwater Harvesting Alliance, having composting toilets and vegetable gardens will go a long way in helping us meet the criteria for recognition.
Next week, we look forward to the school’s community outreach program resuming in the villages. This will give teachers, GVI staff and volunteers the opportunity to visit the four villages that the children who attend RMMS are from. The community outreach enables GVI to explain to parents and other community members the work that we are doing and give them advice on how best they can help their children at home.
On a final note, our Assistant Head Teach Mrs. Sophie Matai will be returning to the school next week after taking her maternity leave. Having been at the school for almost a decade, her experience and knowledge will be a great help in the coming months and we are all keen to meet the newest addition to her family.