The Community College of Qatar (CCQ) has formed a development partnership with a secondary school in the small village of Makunduchi, on the south coast of Unguja island, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
This comes as part of CCQ’s “continued commitment to be a beacon of community service in the region and beyond”, it has said in a statement.
The purpose of this partnership is to “explore ways of developing educational practices and give faculty a bold new outlook on education in a region of the world very different to the Arabian Gulf”, the statement noted. “International partnerships between institutions such as this show a great understanding and appreciation of the challenges that occur across a range of educational fields.” Faculty members from the Community College of Qatar engaged in a special community service project, as part of this partnership, through two visits to Makunduchi. The CCQ faculty worked with staff and students on delivering stationery supplies, teaching English classes and helping paint older classrooms, many of which stand at over 100 years old.
Dr Ibrahim al-Naimi, president of CCQ, said: “I am proud of this worthy and charitable undertaking from our faculty, which is part of CCQ’s determined commitment to civic engagement and to support all educational efforts.”
“This is a real chance for people to make a positive change and explore not only a new region, but also alternative pedagogical practices and reassess their own attitudes and values towards education, themselves and the wider world,” said Thomas Hodgson, the head of the project and CCQ faculty member.
Dr Mick King, chair of the English Language Centre at CCQ, added: “Returning to Makunduchi Secondary School was meaningful for those who travelled for a second time and for those in Zanzibar who received us. It was a sign that we are in this partnership for the long haul.”
Mussa Kinole, headmaster of Makunduchi Secondary School, thanked the CCQ faculty for both visits and stressed his keenness to explore more ways to further strengthen and harness the relationship between the two institutions. This may include the construction of further new classrooms, delivering the possibility for more students in the village to access an education.
Since the partnership was formed in April 2017, funds had been raised to improve the physical attributes of the school. Enough money was raised to construct a block of three brand-new classrooms, which were formally opened on January 29 by Idrissa Kitwana Mustafa, district commissioner of Southern Zanzibar.
In the coming years, CCQ will “continue its efforts to enhance this partnership by taking its students to Makunduchi as part of their service-learning education programmes, which is expected to be a life-changing experience for them”, the statement added.
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