Primary Education Program
Bitame Lucia Nursery and Primary School The World Development Report 2000/2001 indicates that the biggest problem of poverty, besides the lack of food, is the lack of power directly related to a lack of knowledge. Worldwide almost 1 billion people lack a basic skill to acquire knowledge: they are illiterate. They are illiterate because they have had no primary education or because the quality of their primary education was too low. The importance of primary education has been recognized by international and national agencies and scholars. Investment in the early education benefits the individual, society and the world at large and it is among the most effective apparatus known to reduce poverty and inequity. It is for these reasons that CAPEC Education Project is providing free education for children in the Nkolfoulou and other neighboring villages.
The Bitame Lucia Nursery and Primary School began in February 2009 with 20 orphans and underprivileged children and two of our volunteer Ted Cunningham from United Kingdom and Clausen Michael from Denmark in a two-room schoolhouse. Through the generous support of our donors and friends, these children had a complete free education with all necessary school materials provided to them. Since its inception, the school has grown considerably. Every year the school adds another class and will continue to do so until the oldest students reach class 6. Our Mission is to provide education to the children of the rural area of Nkolfoulou, so they would not be deprived of education based on their locality or family financial circumstances Most of the Foster families and guardians, who already have limited resources as it is, are often not equipped to assist the growing number of these orphans children. CAPEC wish is to put up a structure which will guarantee low cost fees for poor families create jobs and become self sufficient. CAPEC attempts to bridge the gap between rich and poor by offering good quality education for the most underprivileged. It is also relevant to understand that this village has no libraries or ICT training opportunities for young people Whereas government-run schools in Cameroon focus primarily on memorization and repetition, CAPEC nursery and primary school is unique because it values child-centre education. This means that class sizes are small (no more than 25 students per class), corporal punishment is forbidden, and teachers give individual attention. By focusing on these areas, CAPEC is attempting to embrace new pedagogical methods that encourage a deeper understanding of the material. As a result of this approach, CAPEC pupils are able to learn more advanced material than their peers in the public system. CAPEC distinguishes itself by providing food for its students. Teachers realized that in order to learn effectively, children need to have enough energy. Since some children did not take breakfast before coming to school, a proper lunch has been part of the educational program since its establishment in February 2009. Apart from a radically different educational approach, CAPEC also offers a number of innovative additional programs to facilitate its pupils in learning and personal development. Among these are the availability of the Corner Room, special learning days, the yearly Christmas celebration, and the summer holiday program. We intend to add more programs as years goes by. Because the children keep increasing every year, CAPEC is in need of financial help to add more classrooms for the children. For information on the new project and how you can help, see the Special Project.
Door Step Education As part of its outreaching activities, CAPEC goes into the local villages to help children who do not have access to basic education. Thanks to the generous donations of MIVA Netherlands and MIVA Switzerland, CAPEC can employ its minibuses to reach the most remote villages. During afternoon educational sessions, children and youth are gradually taught how to read, and through several multimedia tools (among others role play cassettes), important information about social issues and HIV/AIDS is passed on. Apart from these, the project also initiated 2 major objectives: 1. Provide a means to impart basic literacy skills to the less settled groups of children viz. those who live on pavements, street corners and often seen begging. These groups are very mobile and usually there is no facility to run classes in the areas where they dwell. A bus provides the most suitable alternative for such a classroom. 2. Provide a School Bus Service for primary school children from slums. Some parents are motivated enough to enroll their children in our school but are unable to drop the young ones to school regularly resulting in high school drop-off rates.
Holiday Program In addition to their work during the school year, CAPEC teachers and volunteers offer summer classes to interested students during July and August every day from 8am to 12pm. During this time, students practice reading, writing, arts, music, swimming, excursion, and play educational games. The Holiday program is also open to orphans from Dan and Sarah Foundation, Foundation Fact, and Saint Marie Cécile.
There are many programs out there, such as the Wilson Reading Program, that can help adults gain the valuable information it takes to properly educate children.