D.J GIRLS COMMUNITY MODEL HIGH SCHOOL RAHIMABAD
Construction of D. J. Girls Community Model High School Rahimabad undertaken by WAFA and WEIF as the first project in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan has been a great success in providing safe and learning-friendly environment to almost 500 students (mainly girls) of Rahimabad and the adjoining villages. Community’s participation, especially village women’s deep-rooted commitment and contributions, in the construction of Rahimabad School has been a very strong source of inspiration and fascination for other communities of Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral. Almost 750 visitors more than half of them females have come to see and gain insights from the school over the last two years. Some of the key visitors to school also included the Chief Executive Officer of Aga Khan Education Service, Pakistan (AKESP), the German Ambassador to Pakistan and his spouse, and the Director Outreach of Aga Khan University, Institute for Educational Development (AKU-IED), Karachi, Pakistan. With a grand infrastructure in place for the school, WAFA paid attention to the school improvement and professional development of staff working at Rahimabad School. For this purpose, Aga Khan University’s Professional Development Center, North (AKU-PDCN) was requested by the school to initiate its flagship school improvement initiative called the Whole School Improvement Program (WSIP). For its multifaceted approach to school improvement, WSIP, over the last one year, has not only taken initiatives in the improvement of teaching and learning, it has also contributed significantly to the other dimensions of school improvement including the school leadership and management, community involvement, curriculum enrichment and staff development, and health and moral development of children in school. In 2009, D.J. Aga Khan Education Service, Pakistan (AKESP) selected the D. J. Community Model High School Rahimabad to be the first “model” school amongst its 125 D.J. schools in Gilgit-Baltistan. This “Center of Excellence” is one of the top quality educational institutions in the region and attracts talented students and teachers to study and work in the school. Rahimabad community and AKESP have already signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the community to extend its best cooperation including making all necessary arrangements for the parents to pay the increased tuition fees to cover school’s operating cost. AKESP is committed to provide all necessary technical and professional services to ensure quality teaching and learning in the school. Rahimabad School will become the first sustainable school in Gilgit-Baltistan, a role model for other schools to emulate. This process of sustainability will be replicated in other AKESP schools in Gilgit-Baltistan in the years to come.
SCIENCE & COMPUTER LABORATORIES IN NOMAL GILGIT
WAFA undertook the construction of a science laboratory and a computer laboratory at D.J. Community High School Nomal and equipped these laboratories with the essential science apparatus and computers. A MoU was signed with the D.J. High School Nomal community right at the beginning of the laboratories construction project highlighting WAFA’s and Community’s share in the project. The school community contributed its share in the form of free land provision, free unskilled labor and providing the locally available construction materials such as gravel and sand to complete the project. In addition, WAFA worked as a conduit with other funding organizations to meet the educational expenses of 150 children (mainly girls) hailing from the destitute and needy families of Yaseen (in Ghizer district) and Nomal, Rahimabad and Sonikote (in Gilgit district).