Jamii School Community
Kizimani has recently partnered with Jamii School and helped build them a better and bigger school to allow them to enroll more students who can afford the minimal school fee, thereby enabling them to be a sustainable and successful venture. They currently have 12 classrooms and 550+ students enrolled from pre-school to 7th grade.
The Story of Jamii School
When Basilus lost his job after his long term employers left town, he teamed up with his wife Esther, an early education teacher. They put their energies into starting a pre-school to serve their neighbors in the poor area of Langas, Eldoret where they lived. They started with 10 kids aged 4-7 in their living room.
Having both come from extremely humble backgrounds, Basilus & Esther had great empathy for the parents in Langas who could not afford to pay school fees at the local government-run schools. They took in more and more children, and in less than 12 months had 60 children in a rented space measuring 10 ft by 13 ft. They soon noticed that many of the little ones would fade out by 10 am due to hunger. They decided to serve a mid-morning snack of “ uji” (think Cream of Wheat). Knowing that their children were being nourished physically as well as getting a solid academic foundation, the number of parents wanting their children to attend Esther & Basilus’ school swelled. After the election violence in 2007, they were overwhelmed with requests for admission by families who did not feel safe to return to their rural homes in the farming community surrounding Eldoret town. They soon had 270 children squeezed into 5 classrooms. They named the school JAMII, (a Kiswahili word that means FAMILY). The school currently has 450 children in 12 classrooms. Kizimani partners with Jamii School to provide a daily snack to all the school children.