On day two of Jenny’s Uganda visit she met up with an old friend, Bishop Ivan Lugolobi. Ivan and his wife, Allen, founded Revival Church in 1999. In response to the needs of orphaned children they set up a primary school. Over the past 22 years Revival ministries have developed a nursery and secondary school and there are now over 500 children in full time education. CMS Ireland has agreed to support the roofing of the school chapel with legacy funds.
Revival school is a hive of activity. 150 sponsored champions and 350 fee paying pupils. Students in every room from P1 to S6. All in good order, teachers in class, learning resources on every wall and even a nature table. As we enter, students stand and greet in unison. P7s, S4s and S6s are preparing for national exams so some are in the library, others revising. Outside there are games and play areas, with climbing frames for the primary children.
Tomatoes, maize, cabbages and greens are growing in sacks in every small corner. Dormitories are tidy and well arranged. Wooden bunks replaced with steel ones and burglar bars have been removed to create fire escapes as per the ministry regulations. Simply maintaining the fabric and orderly functioning of the school is a mammoth task. Managing to do this with an atmosphere of industry, healthy discipline and with good cheer is remarkable. But the impressive achievement does not stop there. Here we see vision and entrepreneurship too. A willingness to embrace new ideas, to gather those in need and to move forward with dogged determination. The burden of new regulation is heavy. Hefty new taxes have been imposed on private schools. Regular inspections take place to ensure compliance but little support is given for implementation. This year the 'confidential' has just arrived. This is in preparation for the upcoming national exams. A list of requirements for each subject. Science equipment and reagents, specified insects and plants for biology, items to be sketched for art - a bizarre list, some easily obtainable, others expensive or hard to source. Another challenge to be faced and overcome. Talking with the staff, it is clear that they not only wish to give the children the best education they can but also want to help them build their lives on a sure foundation of faith.
The school has a clear Christian ethos with a motto that reads 'growing in wisdom and stature' and this is clearly modelled by the staff and management each day.
‘Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. … the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere’ James 3:13,17