Rock of Ages
Rock of Ages Community School (ROA) is a nondenominational Christian school located in the village of Mbiko, Uganda. Hands4Uganda's (H4U) hope for ROA students is that they will learn of God's love and be given all the necessary tools to grow into responsible, fulfilled, Christian adults. Mbiko is a small suburb of the second largest city in Uganda (Jinja) and sits near the source of the Nile River. Situated on a main highway that connects Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda, Mbiko has become known as a village of drug trade and prostitution. STI's, including AIDS, are very prevalent in the small village. Due to the high rates of prostitution in this area, many children come from single parent homes or are abandoned by their parents.
About 320 children, ranging from PK3 through Primary 7, currently attend ROA. The average monthly income in Mbiko, for those who are fortunate enough to have a job, is around 3 USD per month. Education is not free in Uganda. While there are public schools, fees are associated with attendance. When a small income means choosing between food and an education, many families simply cannot afford to send their children to school.
Help Build a New School
ROA is currently housed in a rented building on leased land. The landlord of this property has allowed Hands4Uganda to renovate the existing buildings, (adding six classrooms, administrative offices, and a library) in order to serve more children. However ROA is currently at maximum capacity with about 320 students and no other options for expansion.
ROA began with 50 students housed in the small building pictured above. Thanks to the generous support of our donors the current school facility includes two additional buildings. ROA is now at maximum capacity in this space. Some of the major accomplishments at the current school site have included...
- The provision of running and drinking water for all students and staff.
- Building sanitary and environmentally friendly restrooms.
- A library full of books for students to check out and take home (an almost unheard-of concept in Uganda).
- A playground for students to enjoy during recess.
To date, we have purchased a three acres of land near the current school location.
The map shows where the new land is situated compared to the present-day school. Not only is there enough space at the new location to host facilities to support a 500-student population, there is also enough room for a soccer field and a small-scale farm. While extra-curricular activities are not a large part of the current school program, we hope that a soccer field will provide opportunities for the students of ROA to participate in a variety of sports, encouraging teamwork and companionship both on and off the field. In addition, a small-scale farm will give ROA students the opportunity to learn a variety of agricultural skills, while also providing fresh food for school lunches.
Help Us Build a New School
We were able to begin construction of the new school facility in 2018! We are currently in the process of raising the necessary funds to complete the primary building which will host ROA entire student body once construction has finished. In order to complete the entire school facility, we are in need of an estimated $1 million. We are now seeking funding to complete the second floor of the new primary school building. Once this two-story, 14 classroom building is complete the dining hall and kitchen will be the next focus. Following the dining hall, teacher housing will be the next construction project. In Uganda it is customary for a teacher's salary to include housing. Once the construction of the teacher housing is complete Hands4Uganda will no longer have to pay for rented housing, drastically cutting the current overhead costs of Rock of Ages School. Finally, with most of the necessary infrastructure in place, the Nursery Building will be constructed and ROA will be able to expand the student population to full capacity!