Pre-dawn drive, mud and Lequeracabu’u
After a lot of effort and false starts Simon, Jenny and Agostinho may have found a school for our next project in a tiny village called Lequeracabu’u
As if to push their dedication as far as possible, the only way for them to get to the school before the morning wet season rains made it impassable was to leave Dili at 3am! After driving for four hours they finally reached the bank of the river at 7am. They waded across in knee deep water, they started walking to the school across old rice fields under Mt Matebian, one of the highest and most sacred mountains in Timor. The walk turned out to be 1.5 hours rather than the promised 30 minutes – through mud and irrigation streams and dodging water buffalo. One of the teachers acted as a guide and when they were finally approaching the school the children started to ring the school bell (which turned out to an old rusty car hub hanging from the roof).
The school is in a village on a hill above a stream with the mountains in the background and overlooking the fields in the valley. The school consisted of a little more than a lean-to with dirt floors, few desks and tables, no windows or doors, and tiny rooms.
Simon, Jenny and Agostinho are all very excited about the project and believe we could make a massive difference. Currently many of the village’s children are walking to a school much further away which makes them too tired and hungry to learn. It also jeapordises the job of the teachers in the village. Agostinho and Elvino (the builder) are going back next week to investigate the site and prepare a proper quote for a school.