Rubona Primary School
Rubona Primary School is a mixed school comprising 820 students from nursery to P7. We will be completing the following works thanks to the Rotary Club of Aberdeen Deeside:
  • Concreting several floors.
  • Plastering of 4 classrooms.
  • Repairing holes and unsafe brickwork in 4 classrooms.
  • Replacing the roof on 4 classrooms and a staffroom.
  • Replacing the shutters and broken window frames using carpenters from our prisoner rehabilitation programme.
  • Adding a water harvesting system that will feed new hand washing facilities for the girl's toilet.
  • Completing and fixing the existing unfinished water harvesting system including guttering.
  • Replacing an open roof corrugated steel toilet block with a more substantial structure.
The work will go a long way to improve the lives of the children, especially the girls, whose shower/toilet block is barely usable in its current state. 4 classrooms will be hugely improved and made much safer, with a new configurable room which can be split into two teaching areas or one large area for events.
Breaking Ground
17 January 2018
Today the team arrived on site, unpacked and set up their dorm room for sleeping and assembled tools.
After orientation we got down to work and removed the existing crumbling floor in the main teaching classroom. We want to get this room usable for when the children return on the 5th of February. The existing floor is in a bad state - the use of poor cement in combination with poor foundations means the floors only last a few years. We will be replacing the foundations and adding steel floor mesh along with a better cement mix that will last many years.
Unfortunately one half of the room had no hardcore at all while the other had very little so we will get some delivered tomorrow. This goes some way to explain why the floor was in such a bad state.
Heavy Lifting
18 January 2018
Once the original concrete top layer had been removed we then had to remove about 30cm of dirt and hardcore. This is extremely hard work without modern machinery and the blazing sun definitely didn't help.
The carpenter came and looked at the work on the roof and many of the beams need replacing due to the damp (some are already sagging and are dangerous). Work on the roof will start when we have the floor down and the concrete has dried.
The One Brick workers had a quick game of basketball after they finished this long day, I don't know where they get their energy from
Putting Everything Back Again
23 January 2018
After removing all the existing floor and soil we were ready to bring the hardcore back inside and level it up using some broken bricks. Mwanisha, our finance officer came to help.
Once we were level with the hardcore and brick we filled out the remaining gaps with sand. This would then be covered with DPC paper and a steel floor mesh for strength.
Tomorrow we will finish up laying out the grid and start the final layers of concrete.
Concrete laying
24 January 2018
Today we started putting down the first layer of concrete which is a bulky mix of aggregate, sand and cement. This goes straight onto the floor mesh as you can see in the time-lapse video below.
While one team were outside creating the mix, another crew were transporting it to the classroom while team leaders Augustine and Moses worked on ensuring it was perfectly level. Once it has set we can get to work on the final layer eventually - this will see many years of children's footsteps.
Put a roof on it
08 February 2018
Today the carpenters started on the roof. We had a huge delivery of wood that will be used for both the joists and the scaffolding.
We also had Okello, the carpenter tutor from the prison over to measure up for the windows which are going to be built by low-risk inmates so they can train and gain certification in carpentry for their release.
The rest of the workers are putting down the apron around the classrooms. This will prevent rain from seeping into the walls and causing damp and ensure the classrooms last a lot longer.
The floors are now complete apart from the top layer which we will put down after completing the plastering and roofing inside.
A roof in progress
16 February 2018
We're making good progress on the roof - the old rafters have now been replaced. We'll be putting the new roof itself on over the next few days.
The concrete apron is almost finished. The team has put the hardcore in and built the foundations. All that remains is the top layer - we're getting there!
Windows and Doors
19 February 2018
Today we got the finished doors back from the welder. These are secure replacements for the existing wooden doors and should last a lot longer. We also picked up some plywood from our friendly local merchant, Patel, for the ceiling of the roof that will be going in shortly.
The prison carpenters are working hard to complete the 44 replacement shutters that will be going in next week after we complete the plastering.
The apron is almost finished and looks great.
Four of the steel doors have already been fitted.
By the next update we will almost have a usable classroom and will be moving on to the water harvesting.
23 February 2018
The team is making good progress with the rendering and finishing work. Quality rendering like this will make a big difference when it comes to preventing rain penetration.
Even Simon assisted with the finishing!
The shutters are ready!
26 February 2018
The new window shutters have been finished by the prisoners and are ready for installation. We picked them up at the prison carpentry workshop, where we met Okello, the carpentry instructor who has been overseeing their side of the work.
We delivered them to the site and took Okello and four of the prisoners to fit them.
The shutters are in
05 March 2018
The prisoners and Okello made good progress with installing the shutters. The next job is to finish the plastering and then the painting will start.
Filling holes and plastering
11 March 2018
John has now filled in all the holes in the classroom walls. Having worked with us for 9 years, we can always rely on him to do a good job.
Maxim and the rest of the team have also made great progress with the plastering - he certainly looks pleased!
Augustine, our site manager, inspecting the plastering.
This section of the building will be turned into the library. We demolished the walls of an old staff room to make it a suitable size and used some transparent roof sheets to make sure there is plenty of light.
16 March 2018
We've chosen cream colours for the inside and outside and cherry red, blue and grey for the windows and doors. We have also bought gutters and connectors for the water harvesting system.
The first classroom has been almost finished.
Harvesting the rain
20 March 2018
The school currently has two water tanks for rain water harvesting but the trouble is they haven't been correctly installed and are in the wrong position so we're in the process of reinstalling them. We first of all built a new stand and then we did the concrete screed. All that remains is to put the 10,000 litre tank on the stand: simple steps to prevent water shortages, improve sanitation and reduce illness.
Building shower for girls
21 March 2018
We're making great progress with building the girls' shower! The original girls shower was just an iron sheet - now they have a genuine building with adequate plumbing. We went from groundworks to finishing in just 7 days!
We are (almost) finished!
11 April 2018
All 4 classrooms have now been painted in a mixture of cream, grey, red and blue. The next stage is to level all of the surrounding ground and create smooth walkways.
The girls shower is now structurally complete - we just need to finishing painting it!
After this, all that remains is the hand over ceremony!
Thank you guys for your hard work!
12 April 2018
One Brick builders.
Completed April 2018
Students at Rubona Primary School
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United Kingdom
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OBAAT Uganda
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Fort Portal, Uganda
NGO number 11726