In 2017 and 2018, Ann B. Smith and Antoni Bazia traveled to K'angome School in rural Malawi by way of Johannesburg, South Africa, and the capital of Malawi, Lilongwe. We were introduced to the area by Solomon Nkhalamba who was born and raised there but has since emigrated to Portland, Maine where he has furthered his studies in Education and is now teaching at the University of Southern Maine.
During our first trip, we visited the school and saw the many bright, eager faces of children who are fortunate to live in an African nation where grammar school is without fees. Their primary goal during those eight years is to learn mathematics and become literate in both Chichewa, the dominant tribal language, and English. Upon graduation they take a test of their skills, especially English fluency, because all subjects are taught in English at the secondary level. With only a blackboard and a piece of chalk, the dedicated teachers of K'angome school teach classes of 35-40 students. There are no books, no pencils, and, without electricity, no technology.
We were so amazed at what these Malawians were accomplishing with so few advantages that we returned the following year with our suitcases filled with copies of our publications as well as other books in English which required little explanation of the context of the modern world so that these children could go to their school library and take out a book appropriate for their reading level. Thank you Altrusa International of Maine for helping us make this happen!
Samson Richard Kabbashi, aged 52, passed away on March 28, 2018, at Maine Medical Center in Portland, Maine. Born in Yambio, South Sudan, Sam was educated in the field of public health where he worked for many years in Louisville, Kentucky, Lansing, Michigan, Pittsburgh, Pensylvania, and Portland, Maine. He cared deeply for his fellow South Sudanese, serving as a leader of South Sudanese diaspora communities in Beirut, Lansing, and Portland. He treated everyone with respect and will be especially missed in the Azande community. He is survived by his father, Richard Kabbashi of South Sudan;his wife, Dr. Betty Ayoub Philip-Kabbashi, three children, JacklineSam-Neimat Kabbashi, Richard Sam-Mbonriundo Kabbashi, and Roda Sam-Hipal Kabbashi, and twin grandsons, Prosper Johnson and Prince Johnson, all of South Portland; two brothers and three sisters of South Sudan and one brother, Patrick Kabbashi, of Portland.
To share a memory or condolence with the family, please visit www.ahutchins.com. In lieu of flowers, a donation can be made at Bank of America, www.youcaring.com/samandbettykabbashi-1095935. More about his life of service can be found at http://obituaries.pressherald.com/obituaries/mainetoday-pressherald/obituary.aspx?n=samson-richard-kabbashi&pid=188616421&fhid=18577