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Five New Classroms for Hearing Impaired Children, Sierra Leone

Requested by

St Joseph's School for the Hearing Impaired

Who are you trying to help? What issue are you trying to address?

St Joseph’s School for the hearing impaired has provided care and a special education for hearing impaired children across Sierra Leone for more than 30 years. Today, the school welcomes 251 students, including more than 93 boarding pupils.

As in many parts of the developing world, children with disabilities in Sierra Leone are often socially marginalised; some are even rejected by their families. St Joseph’s school aims to combat this stigma and enable hearing-impaired children to take their rightful places in the society. To that end, the school offers students rigorous academic education and teaches vocational skills that will allow them to become active members of the working world. The school also involves its students’ parents in their children’s education and to teach the people of Sierra Leone about the life of the hearing impaired.

The St. Joseph’s School for the hearing impaired children is the only school in Sierra Leone or West Africa offering primary education and language acquisition according to the so-called Maternal Reflective Method (MRM) supported with sign language. This allows children to learn to speak, write and read in any language, making them more capable of functioning in society, taking up official jobs or preparing them for further studies in secondary education or University.

What is your project and how will it help?

Our project is to build five new classrooms that will provide the space to develop the specialist educational and training programmes to junior secondary school level.

An inclusion programme with St Joseph’s secondary mainstream school was set up to allow students with hearing impairments to continue onto secondary education. Despite being initially accompanied with a qualified teacher from St Joseph’s School for the Hearing Impaired, pupils began to noticeably struggle, which was reflected in their grades. Overcrowded classrooms coupled with poor teaching practices were a major contribution and as a result in order to safeguard the education of our pupils the management team agreed on developing a junior secondary school within the campus. However, the school is currently at full capacity, whereupon the construction of 5 classrooms is imperative.

There are currently three classes of students who are working on the Junior Secondary School curriculum but this is creating a severe shortage of classrooms. The existing provision for nursery and primary children will be developed by building 5 extra classrooms to complete the quadrangle within that block. This will then release the necessary classroom space required to allocate classrooms for a small dedicated junior secondary school department.

The project will benefit older hearing impaired students who currently only have access to limited facilities within the current curriculum. The school’s primary objective is to provide an education for the students to then occupy their rightful places in their local society, both in the economic and cultural fields. To achieve this, the school carries out different activities to ensure their holistic development.

How can other people partner with you on your project?

People can partner with us or our project by providing either funding, labour or the resources required.

Please detail the resources that you need.

- Foundation works, £6,410
- Block work and steps, £3,617
- Concrete works, £1,891
- Wood works, roof and ceiling, £2,293
- Roofing, £2,599
- Doors and windows, £2,225
- Finishing, painting and decoration, £1,596
- Plumbing, £370
- Electrical works, £1,703
- Transport and workmanship costs, £5.676

In total: £ 28. 380 or $ US 45,883.51

Further information

Contact details

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Partnership types

Project funding; Provision of goods

Regions / countries / territories

Africa: Sierra Leone

Global issues

Children, youth and family welfare; Disability issues; Education and training


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