Construction Works for a Girls Secondary Boarding School

Project location: Sudan, Rumbek
Project start date: April 2008 - Project end date: April 2009
Project number: 2007-26
Beneficiary: AVCISMOM

The Order of Malta works in 120 countries all around the world, through emergency relief, responding to flooding, earthquakes, hurricanes, drought and famine and operating in conflicts areas. It offers material and psychological assistance to women, mothers and children and disadvantaged people. It is specialized in social-sanitary assistance. The Sovereign Military Order of Malta supports the UN peacekeeping missions. It has been operating in Sudan since 1997, achieving important results: giving sanitary assistance to 300.000 people in conflict areas, sanitary assistance to 80.000 people in rural areas, providing medicines and medical instruments and training local medical staff.

In September 2005, the Association of the Italian Knights of the Order of Malta (ACISMOM) answered to the call for aid made by the Bishop of Rumbek, a dioceses in South Sudan, Cesare Mazzolari. The bishop has been active for years in the local communities, particularly in the promotion of social activities and works necessary for the reconstruction of the area.
The ACISMOM started works to build the first female secondary school in Southern Sudan. This school will give each year the possibility to one hundred women to study and be part of the social and economic reconstruction of the country.
The project is part of a larger plan by the "Dipartimento della Protezione Civile della Presidenza del Consiglio dei Ministri" known as Ponteitalia. This project is expected to develop the area and its lack of infrastructures, bringing resources also to the South of Sudan, wheras at present most aid is sent to Darfur since all international attention concentrated on that problem.

The Loreto Sisters will run the school, and the teachings will especially focus on topics as:
- basics of information technology
- hygiene and sanitary education
- domestic education
- creation of female microbusiness
- physical education
- christianity
The project is a mid-long term investment, aimig at empowering young women. It wishes to be more then just a construction of a school building, in that it places women in the middle of the process of social and economic development.
The school aims to satisfy all students necessities:
- 2.956 square meters;
- dormitories for the students and for the teachers;
- a dining room and a kitchen;
- a library;
- spaces for agricultural activities;
- water and sanitation systems;
- a generator.

The Nando Peretti Foundation has financed the sanitation system of the school, the Chapel, the free time spaces and the dining room.

The funding will be used at first to finance the sewerage system of the dorms, as well as the kitchen and the dining room, guaranteeing adequate living conditions for teachers as well as for students during the academic year.
Afterwards, funding will be used to finance the specified activities and structures (the Chapel, the free time spaces and the furniture, etc....). The school will be immediately usable.

One hundred women will be trained every year. Training will involve every girl from 3 to 5 years of age. The curricular and professional qualification will allow women to play a stronger role in the development and local leadership processes, allowing the most skilled women to continue their studies. The education will also have a positive influence on the hygienic standards of the women's families and villages, giving them also the capability to start micro-businesses to sustain their families.

The project will have a positive influence on social and cultural cohesion, as well as on the post-traumatic stress disorder cases, particularly through the socializing effect of the school and through the psychological and social counselling that women will be able to give.
The project is also aims to have a general positive effect on the women's role in society, changing the cultural view of its role.

Associazione di Volontariato dei Cavalieri Italiani del Sovrano Militare Ordine di Malta (AVCISMOM)
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