The Kids’ Educational Engagement Project (KEEP) has dedicated two brand new Reading Rooms in Pleebo & Harper cities, Maryland County to support the culture of reading.
The turning over ceremony was held on Thursday, December 3, 2020 in Harper City at the G. T. Brewer Public School and graced by Superintendent, George Prowd who expressed excitement and how happy the County is for such a much-needed facility for its students.
Superintendent Prowd indicated he feels sad for many students today as they do not fully enjoy the value and impact of books and of reading or have access to libraries. He said reading remains a problem in Liberia with many students unable to read according to their grade levels, which is another reason for which they find exams difficult to pass.
He expressed his commitment to providing support to the school and will pay particular interest in checking to ensure the school’s administration properly maintains the reading room.
The District Education Officer (DEO) of Harper, James Y. Wilson, also expressed pride and joy at the opening the facility. When he saw the condition of the building, he recalled, he had doubts the project would go ahead due to the cost it would entail.
He expressed appreciation to KEEP Liberia and commended the organization on the work it has done in Maryland. Established in the early 1920s, the George Tubman Brewer Public School was built by the first Superintendent of Harper, Joseph Gibson.
The school has gone through several location transitions over the years and currently occupies the compound with the John Hilary Tubman Junior and senior high school.
It is run by two separate and distinct administrations with the morning session being headed by Principal, Mr. Moses Torbor, while Principal Gregory Nimeneh heads the afternoon session. The school has a combined student population of 1,265 students, and 59 teachers in total.
Also at the dedication, the District Superintendent for Pleebo, Aloysius Williams, emphasized the importance of reading and how cardinal comprehension is to learning. According to him, the lack of reading is a disease in Liberia’s educational system and encouraged the school’s authorities to work harder to make dreams come true.
Mr. Williams added: “if the students fail, it means the teachers have failed and, as such, they need to do all within their power to ensure the students perform well and make the county and country proud.”
The Founder and Executive Director of the Kids Educational Engagement Project (KEEP), Brenda Brewer Moore, said her organization champions promoting literacy especially reading and the goal is to cover the entire country.
Mrs. Moore said the dedication of the Maryland County reading rooms have given her a sense of fulfillment as her ancestors hail from the county and she is happy to impact the educational journey of students in the county.
She indicated that the completion of the renovation and stocking of the GT Brewer Reading Room cost US$32,000, while the Pleebo Demonstration Elementary and Senior High School room cost US$19,000.
“We want to plead with the school’s administration to ensure the students take advantage of the books and resources provided to them,” Mrs. Moore said.
KEEP is a registered charity organization in Liberia and the USA (#821262396), which supports various educational activities in Liberia with a mission to provide various resources that would facilitate access to primary education by engaging with parents, community leadership, establish community structures, and to promote social justice and development of vulnerable children and youth by strengthening their capacities. Meanwhile, Mrs. Moore used the occasion to thank individuals and companies who donated towards the project such as H&A Corporation, APM Terminals, FrontPageAfrica, Activa Insurance Company, Mwetana Corporation, Bodyzone Spa, Builders Construction, Cummings Africa Foundation, the Liberia Telecommunications Authority (LTA), PriceWaterHouse Coopers, World Lebanese Cultural Union, Swedish Embassy, Pinkberry, Edana Photography, Electroworld, Royal Grand Hotel, and ActionAid Liberia.