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Hard school to get into

st_als_01.jpgIn his column in Avondhu (a Co. Cork weekly), David Gaffney SJ gives a new meaning to educational exclusivity. The Jesuit school in Kibera, a slum of Nairobi, Kenya, has strict criteria for selecting pupils: the child’s parents must be dead; they must have died of AIDS; and the pupils must live in Kibera itself – with no running water, basic sanitation, or electricity. So the school, St Aloysius Gonzaga, provides a holistic care, including breakfast, lunch and study facilities. Kibera has a population of around one million and is the largest slum in all Africa. St Al’s (as the school is affectionately known) has been up and running for just six years, and it is helped along its way by the Chicago Province of the Jesuits. A small-format video about the school can be seen on the school website.