The Family Preservation Alliance High School – Gobero promotes access to education for hundreds of economically disadvantaged children each year. Those who are unable to afford the high fees associated with attending a secondary institution, which are substantially higher than primary level schools. It is not unusual for poor families to pay expenses for books, lab fees, exams, mandated class tours, cleaning products, food and even toilet paper. For far too many FPA families the choice between meeting the needs of the family overall, versus paying mandated school fees is a painful reality. A reality which only serves to reinforce the cycle of poverty within rural Uganda. FPA is dedicated to lessening that burden on families and recognizes the importance of education and community support as a means of family preservation and protection. Read more about investing in girls’ education
In 2009, FPA set out to build a local secondary school with the goal of providing free, quality education to those in greatest need. This location would also serve as a base of operation for the work FPA-Uganda does outside of Gobero – Wakiso District. With that in mind, land was secured, permits were submitted and plans commenced on designing a school that could not only change the lives of deserving students, but would also provide a safe and reliable location to benefit the community. The goal of this project, was to create a space that would not only uplift qualifying students, but would also provide the community with a place to gather and learn. FPA has utilized this campus for vocational training, community health seminars, and a training center for the implementation of Saving Initiative programs. The entire property was designed with future growth and versatility in mind. Community members helped to clear the land and assisted in the excavation of the site. Villagers who expressed an eagerness to learn how to lay foundations, frame, roof and stucco were able to train and work under our team of contractors. This collaboration not only forged goodwill between our contractors, FPA staff and the community, but also, and more importantly, afforded valuable skill sets to hard-working men and women.
With patience, planning, perseverance, and an unwavering commitment from our donors, FPA completed the last phase of construction on its Senior IV classroom block and clinic in 2019. This project, in its entirety spanned the better part of the past decade. Undertaking a job of this scope and size in an area that has no electricity or running water and was not easily accessed by road, had its share of challenges. It was not uncommon to see young men on bicycles delivering jerry cans of water to the property so that builders could mix the mortar by hand. The completion of this school, is evidence of the strength of the human spirit!
Family Preservation Alliance High School sits atop a peaceful hill just above Hoima Road in Gobero. With its neat red roof, stucco buildings and surrounding gardens, it is a symbol of the hope and transformation that it offers to its students and the community at large. It is a equipped and staffed secondary school, serving over 200 at-risk children within the community. The Gobero campus consists of 2 academic school blocks (containing six classrooms), laboratory, teacher’s room, administrative office, clinic, dedicated kitchen, sanitation outbuilding, head-master house, 3 teacher’s homes, 40,000-gallon cistern – water capture system, solar panels (to run computers & lights at night) and perimeter fencing. In 2019, excavation and drilling commenced on a production well, which will provide clean portable water for our students and nearby projects.
There are currently 18 certified teachers on staff to provide instruction in the 16 state-mandated academic courses. We are fortunate to have a dedicated Uganda Program Director and a equally committed Head Master to handle the day-to-day challenges of running such a project. We are also grateful for the guidance we receive from our medical advisor and nurse. There are several support staff members also employed by the school including a cook, security guard, secretary and maintenance personnel. Academic excellence is expected of all students and tutoring for students who require additional levels of academic intervention and support is arranged as needed. Students also have access to on-site gardens for learning and cultivation of renewable resources, music, art and physical education programs. Students are afforded the opportunity to participate in academic tours to further their exposure to other industries and vocations, with emphases on history, agriculture, commerce and science. Drawing on the strong community support and engaged parent leadership, the FPA High School Parent Organization assists in the initiative of providing a hot meal to students during the school week. From the early stages of planning and preparing, to the current day-to-day operations of the school and facility, Family Preservation Alliance High School has sought to be a place that was created for the community and deeply engaged by the community.
Futures here are bright and hope abounds!