University Don charms vil Kenyan professor is slowly becoming the beacon of hope for pupils, most of them from poor homes in his native Inani village, in Bobasi in Kisii.
Joshua Bagaka has taken it upon himself to spur an enduring reading culture among young souls at Inani Primary with rare passion.
The program born two years ago is already bearing fruits, he tells the Star .
Bagaka who lecturers at the KCA University in Nairobi says beyond improving reading skills at Inani Primary, he is pushing for the setting up of a resource Centre where more other pupils from the neighboring Nyamache region schools can also mine knowledge .
“With a well stocked resource centre, the children can come here on Saturday afternoon after church and Sundays to study. This is the second target even as we ensure these one here are given the requisite implements that can help them compete with others in cities,” he said.
The don readily confesses of that he had for a while been stung with the passion to be a change agent in his village even as he changed lives of students at KCA University.
The ‘Inani Read Baby Read’ initiative he is currently spearheading is all about improving the reading skills among the young souls struggling with clutches of poverty in village schools .
He set off from home before expanding the initiative.
“We donate books which teachers, together with pupils set time aside to study once or twice a week. The postive testimony is that there is noticeable change among the learners themselves,”, he told journalists.
Pupils from poor homes, the don said are equally armed with ambitions thus the initiative .
” It is the lack of implements such as these that holds them from digging quickly their way to success “he states. .
“These are a people imbued with hope to be somebody in the future,”he adds.
” Here”, he said, “we are only trying to invest in books which would in turn help in great measure to make really that dream,”
During book donation event the children break off to showcase talents and their reading prowess.
They recite English and Gusii poems with rare eloquence.
The Friday event at the school brought other visitors who share the dons dreams.
One was 12 year old Ethan White, from the Minnesota USA who donated more than 50 of his books.
He was flown in to do the donation by himself after he saw a video of the the first event.
Area Ward Rep Jacob Bagaka said the County will help set up a new class in the school as part of the efforts to back up Professors efforts.
Professor admits more is still needed to in material provision to realize the goal
“Beyond reading, we are now seeing children doing things with amazing confidence and this will be inculcated throughout their lives ,”he stated.
The event Friday was re-energize the program, he said .
” I am even seeing them pronounce very difficult words , “the Don said.
The initiative would be expanded to other schools in the future.
Together with KCA, they have already identified a school in Kajiado where they will launch a similar drive.
” Even with our effort, parents must also have the interest of their children at heart, they should be ready to cooperate with teachers to help in the advancement of this reading culture,” he said.
Inani Primary School head teacher Nyamoita Maoga said the initiative by professor Bagaka was godsend.
” We only appeal for that more other stakeholders chirp in to help especially in infrastructure even we go on with this initiative, “she said