Gbarpolu County – Over the years, efforts have been made by the Liberian Government as well as various developmental partners to decentralize basic services and facilities to other parts of the country.
Gbarpolu is a county that has been consistently ranked low on the overall education ladder in Liberia, with many of the schools in the county stopping only at Grade 6.
The county currently only has 3 high schools which are several hours’ drive apart, leaving thousands of students who are unable to access these schools stopping in 6th or 9th grades
Access to vocational training centers is grossly limited, leaving many residents with the options of engaging in alluvial mining or sustenance farming activities. Currently there is no computer training center available.
With funding from the National Oil Company of Liberia through its partner, TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Company ASA (TGSN) the Kids’ Educational Engagement Project (KEEP) recently dedicated a 4 room Community Learning Resource Center (LRC).
The LRC contains a mini Library, computer laboratory which has 10 computers, vocational skills training room, etc.
Speaking at the dedication ceremony, the County Education Officer, Hon. Danwolo Catacaw thanked KEEP for the work they are doing to support government’s efforts in the County.
He noted that the organization may not be a big one, but they have been doing some good initiatives in the county that has supported the efforts of the Ministry of Education. He admonished the residents to utilize the facility and read and learn as it is only through education that Gbarpolu can develop.
The Superintendent of Gbarpolu, Hon. Armah Sannor thanked the level of work NOCAL has been doing in the county, not only this project, and noted that over the past 2.5 years NOCAL has done some good developmental projects in the County and thanked them for the support.
Mr. Ambolai Mamey, the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) lead for NOCAL thanked KEEP for the good job in the completion of the building and expressed the excitement of NOCAL and its partner TGSN not just on the completion, but on the quality of the work done.
He said noted that they are impressed and proud with the work KEEP did with the LRC and thanked the people of the community as there are times they do projects and are happy with the work but having seen the completed project, he is excited and appreciative of the work done by KEEP.
Making remarks at the event, the founder of KEEP, Mrs. Brenda Moore thanked NOCAL for recognizing the work they are doing in Liberia and believing in their capacity to handle a project as magnitude.
She said this facility is the largest her organization has spearheaded to date and they are excited about the work. She said the completion of the building is the first phase of the project and that they intend to commence training activities in computer literacy, sewing, tye dye as well as reading sessions and other educational activities.
She encouraged the people of Bopolu District, and Gabrpolu County as a whole to make use of the facility and not allow it to be another beautiful building but to use the services to change the narrative on the dismal educational statistics of Gbarpolu can be changed.
The Learning Resource Centered is powered 100% with solar power energy. The project is valued at U$51,360.