Friday, 30 March 2007

27th March
Leave at first light . Drive through beautiful countryside off road and through river beds towards Badakshan and the Hindu Kush. A perfect day with blue skies and vast mountains covered in snow above the rocky gullies .Cherry blossom and fast flowing rivers ,men fishing with nets and long wooden poles ,donkeys carrying women clad in burkhas and young children up the valley , communities of mudbricked houses with adobe walls . So beautiful. We leave Fakhar and head on for Ledgei . I last visited in 2005 and this isolated community had no school. I met 700 children who all put up their hands and asked me to build them a school. Today we are visiting the school which we built and equipped after that visit.
We have a wonderful greeting and the school is fantastic . It lies in an idyllic spot by the river ,beneath snowcapped mountains and with a football pitch which overlooks a vast valley . We hand out presents and cards and football kit and wander round the classrooms visiting the kids. Then on up the valley to S Zuhrudin School .
Met there by the regional education minister . School for 1400 boys and 1200 girls. Walk through the village beside the river to the girls school. Flocked by dozens of children we arrive at a large old house with delapidated classrooms . The school is in a home which is rented and the conditions are poor. We visit all the girls and give out presents and have an amazing meeting with teachers . We have the money to build the school for them and they are so happy. Visit the site where we will build---by the river and a wonderful place for the school. Fresh fish from the river is brought in for our lunch . An incredible place and all very humbling .
Back through Worsaj to Wahdat School . Sadly we are too late to see the children studying outside...class has finished for the day. But we soon find children in the village who go to the school and we discuss the plans for a new school for them . The school will be built in memory of Angus Lawson ,with funds raised by the Angus Lawson Foundation . I show Angus ' photograph to the children and feel very moved as I watch them looking at it. It is such a special way to remember him -to give other children so much opportunity and hope in this beautiful and isolated valley ,which receives so little aid from the outside world. They are so happy that we are building a school for them . It couldnt be a better place for a memorial to a special person . It is the most peaceful place I have been in . The river runs through it and there are clusters of pine trees shading a football pitch . The village is small and is surrounded by mountains and has a single road lined by a bazaar. It is wonderful that we can build schools in such remote areas and bring hope to so many children .

No comments: