Primary Schools

Since 2005, BCBI has supported primary schools for the villages of Tompoco, Bofoku Mai, Watsi, and Watsi Kengo. More than 400 children attend, ages 6 to 12. A Parent Committee provides oversight to the schools; the committee distributes classroom supplies to families and reports back to us on school progress. BCBI provides teaching manuals, pencils, pens, notebooks, chalk, blackboards, and soccer balls, and covers the salaries of nine teachers.

Working at the chalkboard with a student
School books
delivering supplies
Delivering classroom supplies

Etate Field Day

Etate Field Day
View a slideshow of

the Etate Field Day.

In 2012, BCBI hosted the first “Field Day at Etate” for children attending the local schools that we support. Despite the proximity of their village to the border of the national park (less than 5 km away), the children from Tompoco and Watsi had never seen a bonobo or an elephant or any signs of them. These species were extirpated long ago in the forest near their villages.

Field Day is intended to lessen local resentment toward the national park and build greater awareness about the park’s value. Annually, four teachers and 20 children join us for a day at the Etate Research Station and Patrol Post to learn about the national park. Etate guards conduct the entire program; they speak about the Salonga, its history, their work, key wildlife, and conservation. Field Day is a one- of-a-kind educational experience in the Salonga National Park.

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