pupils at Ephphata School

The Ephphata School in Lubumbashi has been providing education for deaf-mute children since 1983.  It seeks to help students develop the skills necessary to become confident, integrated members of society.   Children are enrolled in six grades of primary education, followed by four grades of secondary education where training focuses on carpentry and sewing skills.  This is the only school catering for deaf children in Lubumbashi and within a radius of 120 km.  Without special education deaf children will not have the opportunity to learn to read and write and increase their chances of employment.  The school, which opened with eleven pupils, has educated a total well in excess of 250 children and currently 175 students are enrolled. In 2011 the project started carpentry training for the boys in secondary school, and a new building has been constructed accommodate this new initiative. There has been a sewing training class for the girls for some years. Educating handicapped children is a low priority for parents struggling financially with large families. At the present time there are 16 teachers working with 175 children.

There is a committee of parents and teachers who oversee the running of the school. The project leader has done, and continues to do, an outstanding job in enabling deaf children to prepare for an independent life.

peeople making furniture
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