The Mua Greening Initiative program works closely with schools. There are 22 schools in the region and each received tree seedlings during phase 1 of the program. The Monitoring and Evaluation report for the trees planted in phase 1 indicate that the schools posted the lowest survival rate of 72%. This was attributed to low levels of ownership and water challenges. To improve the ownership levels, GMEI plans to establish Eco-clubs in the schools and incentivize learners to grow trees to maturity. The Eco-clubs will also serve as a platform for awareness creation in order to inculcate a green mind-set and culture to the young minds hence securing the next generation of environmental protection green champions.
The schools experience frequent water shortages and the secondary boarding schools have to supplement their water needs through buying water. The effect of water scarcity is felt hardest by school going children who are forced to travel for long distance to fetch water for cooking their school lunch, for their resident teachers, and dusting-off their classrooms. This means that pupils spend significant amount of their learning time to fetch water. The problem has also been aggravated by the fact that the schools have not embraced innovative water harvesting methods such as rain water harvesting. Additionally, most of the school have dilapidated water tanks . This dilapidated tanks not only aggravates the water challenge, but also pose a threat to the safety of the students.
The schools have inadequate sanitation facilities. Poor sanitary facilities aggravate the learning conditions in most Mua hills schools. Existing school toilets are in poor condition and rarely separate blocks for boys and girls, which deprive girls (especially adolescent girls) their privacy. Poor sanitation and hygiene practices are a major cause of water borne diseases (such as diarrhoea) related to contamination and hence poor health, especially among young children. As a result, school attendance and retention of children is low, and hence the poor performance leading to marginalization due to low academic grades.The most popular method of food processing and preparation in the schools within the area is cooking on open fires, which burn poorly, thereby resulting in close-proximity air pollution, high greenhouse gas emissions and low fuel efficiency.
The smoke emission in the poorly ventilated kitchens is being attributed to the increasing number of non-communicable diseases including pneumonia, asthmatic conditions, and chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases among the school cooks.The schools in the region use electricity for lighting. The primary schools have buildings that are not yet connected to power. The area is very cold and the primary children go to school early to wait for the day to break in cold classrooms. Harnessing solar power can reduce their suffering by heating the classrooms, providing lighting in the classrooms thus improved wellbeing