The Emirates Airline Foundation Campus - Uganda; The main classroom block (L) and the administrative block which also houses the rooms for the science and computer laboratories Image Credit:

Dubai: The Emirates Airline Foundation along with Outreach to Africa (OTA) has helped set up a new school campus in western Uganda, the foundation said in a press release on Sunday.

With nursery, primary and secondary sections, the Emirates Airline Foundation Campus is located in Geme village near Fort Portal, Kabarole district, it said.

What began as a collaboration to provide basic health care services to residents in 2010, has grown to become a fully-functioning school.

The campus currently boasts 850 pupils in both day and boarding sections. Upon the completion of ongoing construction and renovation work, the capacity of the school will witness a distinct increase.

The Paul Devlin School was started in 2008 by OTA, an NGO located in Fort Portal, Kabarole district, western Uganda, with a mission to empower communities by providing quality education, health care and economic empowerment projects.

In 2014, The Emirates Airline Foundation in partnership with OTA announced the commencement of a project valued at over $1.5 million towards a building project that would transform The Paul Devlin School.

The construction of The Emirates Airline Foundation Campus — a new wing of the school — will enhance the infrastructure and capacity of the school, allowing more students to enrol and receive a well-rounded education, the foundation said.

“The Emirates Airline Foundation is deeply committed to helping disadvantaged children around the world. The school that we are building with OTA will contribute to empowering communities and transform the lives of so many children,” said Sir Tim Clark, chairman, The Emirates Airline Foundation.

“Our work in Uganda over the past eight years has enabled us to meet our objectives as an organisation, and this project also ties in with the goals of the Ugandan government to eradicate poverty through increasing access to education,” he added.

The Emirates Airline Foundation Campus is expected to be completed by December 2018, in time for the start of the new academic year in February 2019.

The new facility will include dormitories for boarding students, sports fields, staff housing, a library and computer laboratory, a dining hall, and classrooms.

Over the years, the Paul Devlin School has enrolled thousands of students from vulnerable communities.

Edward Nyakabwa, a board member with OTA said: “We have the responsibility to significantly meet the needs of and improve the lives of the communities in which we are stationed. The new wing whose construction was funded by The Emirates Airline Foundation will enable us to increase the number of students who will, in turn, reap the invaluable asset of education,” he added.

“We admit students from the surrounding Rwenzori region and other districts in Uganda. A large number of our students come from disadvantaged backgrounds and are in need of a quality education that will improve their socio-economic standing. This expansion means that we are now equipped to improve the lives of many students who might have otherwise not received any form of formal education,” Nyakabwa added.

The Emirates Airline Foundation in Uganda

In 2010, The Emirates Airline Foundation embarked on its philanthropic journey with OTA in Uganda; sponsoring travel for nurses, doctors and other volunteers who were traveling on both healthcare and humanitarian reasons to support OTA across its various missions, schools and clinics in several remote areas throughout the country.

The next year, the Foundation and OTA marked a historic moment in their partnership.

The Emirates Airline Foundation had just received a single donation of medical supplies worth USD 500,000 from SkyLink Aviation.

The medicines included HIV/Aids treatments, anti-malarial medications as well as vital vaccinations. The Emirates Airline Foundation donated the package to OTA, who, in turn, used them to extend much-needed healthcare to thousands of people.

The Emirates Airline Foundation Campus is the next chapter in the organisation’s efforts to enhance the quality of life and empower disadvantaged communities in Uganda.