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Back to School Week in Kenya: our very own Eddy Omondi goes back to his roots

T. S. Eliot says Home is where one starts from. Going back to Migori County, my place of birth, in order to promote alumni activities has been an amazing experience for me. I look forward to building the same platform at my motherland Homabay County, and more specifically at Rusinga Island from where I trace my origin. Migori is the root, Rusinga is the stem to building alumni platforms.

I saw great support from the County Education Office, the various alumni of different schools at the county, and the school administrations for supporting alumni work. And I received welcoming greetings from all the Sony Complex Primary School Alumni where I sit as the elected current chairman, and from my great school Rapogi High.

Migori County Back to School Campaign was one of a kind. We had many schools who wanted to participate, but were not able due to capacity, I can only offer my sincere apologies with hopes and excitement for an even bigger campaign next year. Kanyawanga Boys, Ulanda Girls, Migori Boys, Nyabisawa Girls, Kadika Girls, Kanga Boys and Tarang’anya Boys High School, we owe you big and promise to come back. Rapogi High School, Yago Mixed Secondary School, Moi Suba Girls High School and Uriri Boys High School, a big thank you to your alumni, the school and all the stakeholders who made our alumni events a success. Hoping you maintain the spirit and vigor in the years to come to build greater and stronger alumni communities and networks.

Each and every alumni groups, had their own style of giving back to the school indicating how diverse groups could be. Yago Mixed Secondary alumni promoted sports as a way of giving back, with alumni training and coaching the students. Uriri alumni group promoted alumni mentorship, Moi Suba Girls alumni promoted talent, while Rapogi High School alumni celebrated their coming together.

Yago Mixed Secondary School is a community based school. It was the first time the alumni were going back to the school as a group. There was an alumni volleyball tournament and a football match with the school teams allowing the students to develop their skills and speak to inspirational alumni.

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Alumni of Yago Mixed Secondary School training and practicing with the volleyball team play as a way of giving back.

Some of the alumni in attendance at the Moi Suba Girls High School event was Josephine Apiyo Odira, the 1st Runner-up Miss Tourism Migori County and Eddith Knight the winner. They inspired the students to work hard, and to build on their talent they did a modelling competition with various students who had a passion for modelling to a lively audience of students and teachers. We saw such an energy in the school, and an enthusiasm about the alumni visits which will be built upon to benefit more students.

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Miss Tourism Migori County and the 1st runners-up Miss Tourism Migori County with Miss Moi Suba Girls, 1st runners-up Miss Moi Suba and the Dancehall Queen Moi Suba Girls High School.

Uriri Boys High School alumni sadly lost their headteacher, the late Mr. Okoth Obonyo Fanuel,   in March 2017. At this school we saw immense support from alumni, giving birth to the creation of the alumni network.  The alumni event was an inspiring motivation to the form fours in the school, featuring a Google trainer to support the students with computer skills.

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Alumni of Uriri High School giving a motivational talk to the form four students.

Rapogi High School was the climax of the Back to School Week in Migori County. This was the first time the alumni were going back to the school since leaving the school. Before the reunion day, the alumni had a radio talk show at Radio Ramogi and Radio Nam Lolwe stations to celebrate, create awareness about the launch and talk about their alumni plans.

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Alumni of St. Joseph Rapogi High School and Future First Kenya talking about alumni activities at Ramogi Radio Station.

The alumni celebration program was divided into three parts, that is alumni mentorship, alumni launch and alumni reunion. A total of 281 alumni were in attendance from the class of 1963 to the class of 2015 and each had a platform to introduce himself and his current work. This was a good platform to network and collect data to be used in creating the alumni database. A foundation stone was laid at the site where we are to build an alumni library. Each alumni came with a book he liked while at school which they donated as part of library book store. The alumni was officially launched by cutting of a cake. As Guy Pearce puts it the thrill of coming home has never changed, Rapogi alumni were home, I was home.

 

 

 

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