Alburgh with Denton Primary School hosts visitor from Malawi as part of Norwich-Dedza partnership
An eye-opening experience is how pupils and staff described the visit of an African headteacher at their village primary school.
As part of a partnership with the Ngoni Primary School in Malawi, headteacher Richard Zuze spent a week with pupils at Alburgh with Denton Primary School.
While there, he taught them how to make nsima, a traditional dish made of maize flour, showed them an African dance and told them what life is like for schoolchildren in his district.
Year 3 and 4 teacher Janet Strode said: “For many years now, we have talked about our link with this school, but it has always seemed a bit distant.
“For the children, the visit of Mr Zuze has made everything much more real to them.”
The Norwich-Dedza partnership develops and supports links between 10 schools in Norfolk and the Dedza district in central Malawi.
As part of it, Ms Strode visited Ngoni Primary School during half-term and said she was shocked to see that children have no electricity or running water in their homes or at school, with classrooms lacking basic resources.
“I have seen photos of the school before, but, for me, it was a revelation to see it with my very own eyes,” said Ms Strode.
The aim of the partnership is to gain an understanding for children in another part of the world and is also part of a wider project to study renewable, clean energy.
“The children were chatting to Mr Zuze and were really interested to learn about life in another culture and country,” said Ms Strode.
Alburgh with Denton Primary School is keen to raise funds for Ngoni Primary School for solar lighting, furniture and equipment.
So far, it has raised enough to buy a solar panel for a classroom and is now looking to provide the school with a library of mini solar lights for the children to borrow.
“If we can appreciate that there are other people who have so much less than us, maybe that would make us a little more appreciative of what we do have,” said Ms Strode.
“Certainly, for me, it’s been an eye-opener and the children realised how lucky they are.”