New Zealand High Commission Suva, Fiji

New school term brings light to education

The first light bulb in the classroom

THERE is good news along with the beginning of a new school term for a rural school based in the interior of Labasa as it is now equipped with a most sought after facility.

It was a moment of joy for Nubu Primary School situated 60km away from Labasa town when it was assisted by the New Zealand High Commission (NZHC) with the provision of solar light.

Under the Head of Mission Fund (HOMF), the school was assisted with the supply and installation of the solar power system which was worth over $22,000.

The project was prioritized as it contributed towards improving access to education services and thereby alleviating hardship in the local communities.

For years, students of this interior school had faced difficulties in aligning their level of education compared to other, better equipped schools.

Expressing his happiness, Head Teacher Beniame Bulilevuka said this was the first ever assistance in the form of such a big development for the Nubu community.

Mr Bulilevuka said that this facility would not only benefit the students but the community as a whole.

“I am very optimistic that this will have a positive impact on the students, school, and the village people as it will bring efficiency in the services,” added Mr Bulilevuka.

While thanking the NZHC, Bulilevuka said that community members could not stop clapping when the first light bulb lit up the room.

Mr Bulilevuka said the school was in quite a poor state and needed assistance, hence they were grateful for the timely support by NZHC. This would also to some extent contribute towards boosting the morale of the students.

He added that now with the development of a new culture, the people would depend on nature to generate their energy needs and they would therefore be more responsible for their environment.

Training was also provided to the head teacher on how to manage the proper usage and maintenance of the solar system.

Mr Bulilevuka said he had been taught some basic steps such as constantly monitoring for water top up and properly loading with the right loads.

According to the supplier Compaq the project is viable and sustainable in the sense that the system depends on nature’s energy source (the Sun) to generate electricity for lighting.

This will in a very small way contribute to reducing carbon emissions and the dependency on fossil fuel.

The company said that with the use of solar energy, the mindset needed to change from the liberal usage of energy to one of conservation.

Through this system there would be constant monitoring of electricity usage so that power is available at all times even in adverse weather conditions.

The benefits for users are clean energy that provides lighting in the initial stages. With additional capacity, the system would be able to power electrical equipment both for the school and for the staff that run the school.

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