Psychosocial support for Nyashanu High fire victims

07 Jun, 2024 - 00:06 0 Views
Psychosocial support for Nyashanu High fire victims Manicaland Provincial Education Director, Mr Richard Gabaza

The ManicaPost


Tendai Gukutikwa
Post Reporter

THE Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education has swiftly responded to the devastating fire incident at Nyashanu Mission High School by providing immediate psychosocial support to the 70 affected schoolgirls.

The schoolgirls lost all their belongings in the inferno on Monday, and have started receiving counselling and guidance on coping with loss and trauma.

Manicaland Provincial Education Director, Mr Richard Gabaza said a team of psychosocial experts was working closely with the learners to help them process their emotions and come to terms with the unfortunate incident.

“We deployed a team of professionals because we knew that the learners would likely be traumatised and having trouble dealing with the loss of their property and dormitory in the absence of their parents.

“Additionally, we have committed to sending a team of psychologists to the school before the end of this week to provide further support, and ensure that the learners’ emotional well-being is taken care of. This will mitigate the psychological impact of the tragedy and ensure the learners’ smooth return to their academic routine,” said Mr Gabaza.

Mr Gabaza said the fire was caused by an electrical fault after power supply had been restored following a blackout.

“The rest of the school children were at the assembly, and only one was in the dormitory doing tasks that had been assigned to her by the matron when the fire started. The fire started when power supply was restored. The girl rushed to the assembly to alert others and when authorities rushed to the scene, the fire had razed the entire dormitory,” he said.

Mr Gabaza said they managed to salvage a few learners’ belongings and mattresses.

“The school is still calculating the total loss incurred, but we are glad that no one was hurt in the inferno,” he said, adding that the schoolgirls have since been offered alternative accommodation and are safe.

The school head, Mr Jackson Dunatuna this week wrote to the learners’ parents informing them of the fire incident.

“I wish to inform you that one of our girls’ hostels that accommodates 70 learners caught fire this morning (Monday) around 8am. This happened as all staff members and learners were in church for the Monday morning assembly.

“We are still assessing the loss, and we will inform you in due course. We are making all efforts to contain the situation and calm down the learners. We have informed the relevant authorities as we are creating alternative accommodation for the affected learners.

“Please be assured that despite the setback by the disaster, learning continues and we will contact individual parents if there are any provisions that may urgently be required by some of the affected learners. We are grateful to the Lord that there were no learners in the hostel and all our learners are therefore safe and healthy,” reads part of the letter to the parents and guardians.


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