Betel School – Cacine


“Building Lives”

Arriving in Cacine, Tombali Region, in February, 1996, José Valberto Teixeira Oliveira, wishing to provide a holistic education to the children of the area, and seeing that there was no kindergarten available to the children, decided to build a school to serve the children of the village. Together with the local community and with the help of friends from Brazil, he built an office, two classrooms, bathrooms and a small auditorium. The school was opened on October 17, 1997 in the presence of officials from local and regional Government, the Ministry of National Education and the local population. José Valberto began with students in kindergarten and each year added another grade.

Betel School is non profit and has a focus on social action. Its objectives are to promote the development of students’ education in the intellectual, moral, cultural and physical domains. Today, the school offers classes from pre-school through to Grade 11. There are 646 students enrolled for the school year 2015 – 2016. The government has approved the addition of grade 12 to Betel School. This will be effective for the school year 2016 – 2017. The community is grateful as life in Bissau for students completing their grade 12 is very expensive and very difficult.

A student residence has been started and construction is expected to be completed in early 2016. A solar panel, furniture, linens and other necessities will need to be purchased. The goal is to have the residence functional to begin the 2016 – 2017 school year. The residence is being constructed so that students who live in distant villages will have the opportunity to complete their education.

The school provides daily lunch to students in elementary grades, free medicines, first aid care and health lessons on oral hygiene.