Monday, 4 July 2011

Urgent appeal: Mustard Seed Secular School in Uganda needs to raise £22,000 for a new school building

Dear reader, our blog has moved to a new address.

Do come on over (and change your bookmarks accordingly):

Students at Mustard Seed Secular School in Busota, Uganda chat
before a lesson on the discovery of oil in Uganda
There are currently three humanist schools in Uganda: Mustard Seed School, Busota, Isaac Newton School, Masaka, and Fair View School, Kamengo. Each offers a broad non-dogmatic education to secondary pupils, where students are encouraged to develop their own views about religion and the world. Each has received significant financial support from humanists and rationalists in the UK. New Humanist and the Rationalist Association have taken a central role in supporting the Mustard Seed School, Busota. Readers have so far donated more then £35,000, which has allowed the school to educate hundreds of children who would not otherwise have gained a secondary education. Mustard Seed School has made great strides in the past year, becoming certified by the Ministry of Education (having met their exacting standards), sinking a borehole to provide clean water and building a science block and computer lab. For the first time every pupil had access to books this year, enabling the school to achieve their best ever exam results.

But they still need your support. The main need is for more space for the school to grow. An historic opportunity has come up, because the Muslim School next door to Mustard Seed has closed down, and the land come up for sale. It includes a block of four classrooms, offices and a kitchen, and would enable Mustard Seed to become a local exam centre, meaning students would not need to travel long distances to do exams, and bring the school additional revenue. The land and school have been offered at a very competitive price, but the offer is time-limited. We need to raise £22,000 as quickly as possible.

If you can help please visit the Uganda Humanist Schools Trust's donation page or call Steve Hurd on +44 (0) 1782 750338.

To learn more about Mustard Seed, take a look at Andrew West's photo essay from the current issue of New Humanist.
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