Sunday, October 7, 2012

Walking for Kiribati Children with Special Needs

Kam na Mauri ni Kabane - Greetings to you all.

I have dedicated my camino to raising funds for the Kiribati School and Centre for Children with Special Needs. 
Kiribati - (pronounced KIRR-i-bas Speaker listen), officially the Republic of Kiribati, is an island nation located in the central tropical Pacific Ocean. It is composed of 32 atolls and one raised coral island, dispersed over 3,500,000 square kilometres, (1,351,000 square miles) straddling the equator, and bordering the International Date Line to the east. 

Kiribati became independent from the United Kingdom in 1979. It is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the IMF and the World Bank, and became a full member of the United Nations in 1999.

Kiribati is one of the world's poorest countries. It has few natural resources. Commercially viable phosphate deposits were exhausted at the time of independence. Copra and fish now represent the bulk of production and exports.

Kiribati School and Centre for Children with Special Needs is the only specialist facility in Kiribati to support special needs children. Currently there are 102 students enrolled from pre-school to post-school ages. The children's disabilities include blindness, deafness, spinal bifida, mental retardation, Down Syndrome, muscular dystrophy, hydrocephalia, and a range of other physical disabilities - plus variety of conditions in the autism and Aspergers Syndrome spectrum.
The school has a total staff of 22 comprising the Principal, 16 teachers and five support staff. As well the school is has a strong and active Committee of Management with a proven record of sound and responsible financial management. 

I commenced walking from Burgos, Spain on 27 September 2012 my destination is Santiago  de Compostela a trip of about 500 Kilometres which I hope to complete by the end of October 2012.

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