Pupils of the Three Kings School of the Blind at Avakpedome in the Central Tongu District of the Volta Region are studying under trees and sheds as the school is finding it difficult to bridge its infrastructure deficit.

Martin Gozah, the Headmaster, told DAILY GUIDE that the school, since its establishment in 2001 has only four structures that are being used as dormitories. The school, which houses the children due to the reluctance of their parents and guardians to keep them at home, has neither a kitchen nor dining hall. The congestion in the dormitories is unbearable for the students, the Headmaster said.

This situation has also compelled the school authorities to convert the corridors of one of the dormitories into a temporary dining hall. During rainfalls, classes are abruptly ended and the blind students struggle with other students of a nearby basic school, the Avakpedome D/A Primary, to escape the rains.

The school which runs full day lacks toilet facilities and proper bathrooms, forcing students to compete with the community over public toilets.

This came to light when five chapters of the Lions Club International in Accra, presented assorted items including used clothes to the school recently.

E.B Takyi-Micah, a past president of the Jubilee Lions Club who presented the items on behalf of the five Lions Clubs said the donation was to support the school about whose plight they heard during one of such donations at the Akropong School for the Blind in the Eastern Region. He promised that the club whose motto is ?We serve?, will regularly support the school and asked the students to take their studies seriously.

The school currently teaches visually impaired students how to read and write through the use of Braille. Impressive students are then integrated into basic schools within the district to allow them have adequate access to education.

Despite the noble initiative and sacrifices of the headmaster and teachers of the Three Kings School of the Blind, inadequate funds and infrastructure seem to be dashing their hopes.

The lives of the over 30 visually impaired students of all ages are also at stake as their academic progression, career development and future is now dependent on the trees and sheds under which they study. The school also lacks teaching and learning materials, a must-have for every special school.

The Headmaster, Mr. Gozah founded the school before it was ceded to the government and placed under the School of the Disabled at Battor in Central Tongu. He explained that he was inspired by the fact that the entire country had only two schools for the visually impaired and none in the region.

He said although the government pays his wages and that of five others, the school lacks accommodation for them, hence making supervision after school another challenge. He thanked the Lions Club for the gesture and called on others to emulate it.

He also appealed to government, NGOs and other philanthropists to assist the school in getting adequate infrastructure, particularly resource classrooms to attract more visually impaired students. The students, most of whom have dreams of becoming great future leaders are now waiting on the world to make their dreams come true.

 From Fred Duodu and Caroline Tsormana, Avakpedome


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