Teacher to spend month in Rwanda

CUPAR; Kilmaron School, Balgarvie Road;'Teacher Judy Black who is spending a month of her summer holiday at a school in Rwanda'photo; WALTER NEILSON
CUPAR; Kilmaron School, Balgarvie Road;'Teacher Judy Black who is spending a month of her summer holiday at a school in Rwanda'photo; WALTER NEILSON

A NORTH east Fife teacher is set to help orphans and school-children in the heart of Africa.

Judy Black, who is principal teacher at Kilmaron School in Cupar, will spend a month in Rwanda where the aftermath of the 1994 genocide in which 800,000 people were slaughtered, is still being felt.

Although conditions in the east African nation are better now, Judy said people are still poor and educational support is very basic.

She was invited to visit Rwanda by her friend’s daughter who spent time in the country after deferring her university place for a year.

“We will spend the first week in an orphanage which is home to older children who lost their parents in the genocide,” said Judy.

“We will then spend a couple of weeks volunteering in a school, sharing skills with the teachers there and helping the children.

“We have heard that the people are very poor, but very proud.

“The schools are very basic with just desks and chairs so we are taking a variety of things with us.

DIFFICULTY

“As a special needs teacher, I am well used to communicating with children without the need for words so I don’t think the language barrier will pose any difficulty.”

Judy, who lives in Freuchie, said she is taking a parachute, often used to play games at Kilmaron, paint brushes and sports equipment.

During her stay, Judy will be hosted by a Rwandan family so she will also be able to absorb the culture and learn more about the country.

Before she goes Judy intends to hold a series of fund-raising events with every penny she raises going to help the children she will meet.

She said: “I had a coffee morning in Freuchie and a swim and spa night for colleagues which helped boost my fundraising.

“A number of local businesses including the Lomond Hills Hotel, Tranquility at Freuchie garden centre, Fayre Earth in Falkland and Synergy Yoga in Glenrothes have also been very supportive.”

Donations can be made by contacting her at judith.black@fife.gov.uk and be via Kilmaron School, tel. 01334 659480.