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Title : Pre-school in Mount Hagen

District : 7960

Countries : Papua New Guinea 

Topics : literacy, school

Contact : Mike Alien 

As the number of students in the town of Mount Hagen, Papua New Guinea kept growing, they were shuffled into a facility that had once served as a dining hall for the local police force. The old police barracks lacked amenities such as electricity, running water and toilets. But local Rotarians were concerned by the plight of the pre-schoolers, most of them the children of local police officers. The Rotary Club of Mount Hagen solicited funding from the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and transformed the barracks into a place where children could grow and learn. More than 9-pre-schoolers attended class in the building during the week, so volunteers laboured around the clock on weekends to finish the project as quickly as possible. They fitted the new windows for blinds, erected a shiny new blackboard and adorned the fleshly painted walls with the children’s drawings. 
When the overhaul was completed, the school opened its doors to 120 students an increased number because the renovations enabled the Mount Hagen Police Barracks to become an officially sanctioned elementary school and the facility can now accommodates first and second-graders in addition to pre-school students. Reported in the May 1999 Rotarian magazine.