History of the Embangweni School for the Hard of Hearing
Located in the northern region of Malawi, the Embangweni School for the Hard of Hearing is one of three such schools serving the needs of the hearing impaired. The first such school began in 1968 at Montfort in Blantyre. All deaf children throughout the country were taken to that school, but since it was very far to travel, many deaf children were left out and unable to attend school. In 1984 a second school opened, the Mua school for the deaf. This was intended to serve children in the central and northern regions of Malawi and to reduce the distances children were covering. Unfortunately, life was getting tougher and tougher and many children failed to report to school or even to show up for assessment. A major problem was transport for parents who needed to take their children for assessment or to school. The expenses for the childrens transportation were met by the government, but parents had to pay their own transport costs.
The classes shifted from the borrowed church buildings to this new structure, which was used for classrooms at one end and as a hostel at the other. The Logans also provided equipment and office supplies and within a short time the school had most of the necessary things.
As the school continued to grow, there was a need for additional classroom space and it was decided to build a Primary School block. The first block in this section was funded by the Grant Charitable Trust in 1997, with additional funds provided by Jim and Carol Nussbaumer. When a second donation came from the GCT, three teachers houses were begun, with two reaching completion. A final donation for the Primary block came from the Beit Trust, which donated four classrooms as well as head teacher and clerks offices and a staff room. The Primary school was built in 1999 and in 2000 was being used for Standards 1, 2 and 3. Unused classroom space in this block was being utilized for the boys woodworking and tin smithing classes and the girls domestic arts classes.
Another significant structure at the School is the Chapel, which will be used for many functions. It was funded by the New Lebanon Presbyterian Church in Jasper, GA through the help of Mrs. Nancy McGill, whose husband was a beloved doctor at the Embangweni Mission Hospital and whose son, Jim, worked on plans and supervision of all the school structures. Work on the Chapel began in 2000.
By 2000, growth at the School had again placed strain on the hostel and it was decided to build a second hostel, which will be occupied by the boys while the girls continue to live in the original building. The hostel was started with funds donated by Marion Medical Mission; the costs were later taken over by the Fred and Martelle Nussbaumer Charitable Trust and it was finished in 2001.
In 2002, the school, along with the rest of the Embangweni Station, received electricty. In 2003, they received a donation of computers to form a computer lab.