Building a bridge together for the Ithitwe School in Kenya

Nom du partenaire
  • Istituto Comprensivo Anna D’Alençon
  • Istituto Comprensivo Casale 2 F.Negri
  • Scuola Ithitwe Kenya
  • Associazione Meru Herbs Kenya
  • Università Cattolica di Milano
  • Cooperativa Erica rifiuti
  • Cooperativa Senape
  • Autre
  • Autre
  • Autre
  • Autre
  • Autre
  • Autre
  • Autre
  • Planning/implementation of network activities
  • Planning/implementation of network activities
  • Planning/implementation of North/South exchange activities
  • Punctual interventions and support for relations with Kenya
  • Punctual interventions
  • Punctual interventions
  • Punctual interventions
Name of establishment / organisation
Istituto Superiore Balbo
Contact person
Fabrizio Meni
Contact details
01 42 41 77 07
via Galeotto Del Carretto 1
15033 Casale Monferrato
Location of project
Start date and duration of project
01/09/2014 to 30/06/2015
  • High school
  • Middle school
  • Nursery school
  • Primary school
Number of pupils, teachers and staff involved
315 students, 24 teachers
Environment and natural resources, Food, Global citizenship, Inequality
Subject areas
Geography, History, Languages, Other, Science, The arts
Please specify how the project was carried out

Interdisciplinary project divided in:
- Class activities, managed by teachers, external operators (university, cooperatives, NGO) and the students themselves according to the peer to peer methodology (high school students benefitting other students, such as those from early infant and primary level schools)
- Optional activities: musical workshops
- After-school activities aimed at promoting awareness and fundraising

Teaching and learning objectives

- Strengthening student environmental awareness through a comparative reflection of the different lifestyles and their environmental impact in the North and South of the world
- Encourage constant translation of the information acquired daily, adopting good practices of support and spontaneous actions of solidarity
- Develop feelings of genuine understanding among students in relation to the current Kenyan situation, instigating concrete action aimed at implementing a project of solidarity


How did the project originate? What needs does it address?

The project was born “conversely”, or rather from the initial will to collect funds in order to build a bridge over the river Mugi, in Kenya, which since its collapse, has made it inaccessible to many children to attend the Ithitwe school.  Regarding the initial target, a project of knowledge, exchange and discussion followed, involving Piedmontese and Kenyan students:  a partnership created to approach themes of support and solidarity.


Surrounding the initial target – fundraising – the project has managed to create a number of activities related to knowledge, in-depth study, communication, North-South exchange, awareness and direct commitment in realising active citizenship.

STEP 1 - Knowledge
- Studies in class regarding environmental sustainability in the North and Southern hemisphere of the world: face to face lessons, expert intervention, independent research performed by students
- Intervention in class by NGO Meru Herbs workers
- Intervention of specific peer to peer themes created/implemented by high-school students for the benefit of fellow students and early school and primary school students

STEP 2 – North-South exchange 
- Direct contact, via Skype, between Piedmontese and Kenyan students
-Elaboration and exchange of drawings, letters, photographs, texts, and songs on behalf of both schools.  Themes introduced: food, water, movement and consumption

STEP 3 – Active citizenship activities
The students have created and implemented:
- Theme oriented videos of awareness on adopting a sustainable lifestyle, of which one is transmitted at Expo
- A fair point at school, with fair trade products, a recycle space and constant video projection
- Educational material for the permanent workshop area “The hummingbird strategy”, addressed to primary and first level secondary school students
- A public conference of environmental awareness and sustainability

STEP 4 – International solidarity activities
The project has involved numerous and varied activities of fundraising for the benefit of the Kenyan school Ithitwe: 
- At school: delivery of video cameras and cameras to Kenya
- Via Coop stamp collections: delivery of five laptops to Kenya
- Final show: fundraising through ticket sales


Did your project have a final outcome ?

The project concluded with two events:
- A public conference on the theme of environmental sustainability, organised by the students of the secondary school 
- The final show of the project
A video summarising the project itself was implemented, a tool to promote this initiative in the future, as well as a number of other materials/videos of communication and awareness regarding the themes covered.


What communications and dissemination strategy was used for the project ?

1.    At school:
- video 1 and video 2 regarding waste issues, transmitted constantly at the fair point installed at school
- rap to raise awareness to fundraising
- Merry-go-round between Kenyan and Italian students
- Awareness video about the necessity not to waste water
2.    On local territory: public conference about environmental sustainability, final show and printed articles in the local paper during the entire period of the project
3.    At national level: video clip transmitted at Expo 2015 in the Food Short Movie section.


What outcomes and changes did the project generate ?

- Students’ conduct: major participation and promotion of active citizenship initiatives; important hospitality towards other cultures
- Concrete results at school: set up of the “fair” consumption point and the substitution of bottled water with tap water
- On local territory: families and community have been informed and aware of themes covered
- International results: the creation of a “bridge” of knowledge and solidarity between Piedmont and Kenya;  5000 Euros raised for the bridge, whose construction began in June 2015



What difficulties did you encounter when implementing your project ?

Difficulty in the arrangement of assessment tools:
- Fit for different school levels
- Abe to measure enthusiasm and level of emotional and personal involvement of the students
- Able to measure after-school results: appreciation of the show, goodness in the raising of funds, interest demonstrated in the project

What factors made it easier to carry out your project ?

- The existence of a strong motivational and concrete drive (the reconstruction of the collapsed bridge) around which the whole project was focused
- The possibility to start an exchange program with a Kenyan school
- The possibility to collaborate with an NGO who has ensured continuity in exchange and relations with Kenya
- The possibility to plan an interdisciplinary project among fellow workers without obstructions
- A good level of involvement of the territory on behalf of the families

Which factors are most related to global education ?

- Prime involvement of the students in the creation, organisation and preparation of the activities and their commitment in implementing active citizenship
- Focusing on interconnections between the North and the South of the world
- The start of an inclusive process of partnership and co-planning among different members of the North and Southern hemisphere of the world

How did you assess the project ?

- For the infant and primary school students: assessment based on the immediate return of drawings after the peer to peer training session with secondary school students and assessment activities
- For secondary school students: controversial, exhibitions and construction skills were addressed via:
    - Teachers’ assessment of multimedia work implemented, awarding a mark of judgement on reports
    - Assessment delivered by younger fellow students after the meeting

Any comments

The project will pursue:
- To continue exchange and cooperative relations with Kenya
- The local supermarket COOP, which is indirectly involved, in 2015-2016 will start a project within the “Adopt a school” initiative, therefore continuing with the raising of funds
- The materials produced will be used by the educational workshop “The hummingbird strategy” to implement future training paths about consumption awareness

The arts
Global citizenship
Environment and natural resources