Photo 1: “Happy days are here …. not sure if they are happy to send their kids back to school because they are tired ….. but we are sure happy to see them all back.

While Zimbabwean schools are still closed due to teacher strikes, hunger and political unrest, Mozambiqean schools opened today with the sounds of laughter and joy all around. Unlike some western countries, attending school in Africa is a priviledge and a very festive occasion.

Photo 2: Every student get ready to sing the Mozambiquean National Anthem. And are they proud or what?

Photo 3: Very dedicated …… very ….. !

Moms and dads from all over gather early at the school with their kids. Every kid grabs a broom (made from a tree branch with leaves) to clean the school. Grass will be slashed (it’s rainy season afterall!) After all the cleaning …… everyone is ready for the grand opening. Everyone has their best clothing on for the occasion. It looks like the Paris Fashion show. Seriously! /Take a look at our school day fashions. (Which makes me think – maybe I could organize Mozambique’s first Fashion Show.)

Photo 4: Now that is what I call a great hairstyle for your first day at school.
Photo 5: The colour scheme would make many a fashion designer green with envy. Priceless!
Photo 6: And yes …. the queen of them all. A hairstyle to match an absolutely fantastic Victorian dress. What can I say ….. “dressed to kill”.

We started the day with the National Anthem, a prayer and introducing all our teachers. Parents had the opportunity to give a speech and this is ussually done very verbally with much laughter from the audience. After all the laughter and speeches the school for 2009 was opened officially. Our more than 200 kids have the opportunity to attend or bush school for free. During these hungry times every kid will also recieve a free meal per day for the rest of the year.

Photo 7: Francois with some of the students.

Photo 8: OUR TEACHING STAFF FOR 2009. Front from left to right: Senhor Jasse (Sport); Senhor Joao Fenniasi (Grade 2, 4 and Music); Snr. Paulo Inacio (Grade 1 and 5); Middle: Francois Rauch (Transformational Engineer); Back: Tito Mabuleza (Pre-School and grade 3); Simon Nicolau (Pre-School {new} and First Aid); Eunice Mozenatemba (Art & Craft); Fernando Hurekure (Kitchen cook); Ernesto Abudu (Garden & Health class).