A health hazard is looming at Dorset Secondary School near Shurugwi as the institution's ablution facilities are at risk of collapsing due to incessant rains that recently pounded the country.
The school, which is situated in the Dorset resettlement area in Shurugwi South constituency, has an enrolment of more than 500 students whose school building blocks and furniture are in urgent need of repair. It also has a staff complement of 18 teachers.
Chairman of the school development committee, Nkosana Dube told Sunday Southern Eye that his committee was racing against time to construct another blair toilet as the girls' ablution facility recently collapsed.
"We are racing against time to construct one of the ablution facilities which recently gave in and it is our fervent hope that the remaining structures will also not be affected," Dube said.
He added that the girls were using two ablution blocks with 10 partitioned cubicles inside the structure.
"Parents have moulded the required bricks and our major challenge is sourcing of cement and other related material because funds donated by parents are currently not adequate," Dube said.
Besides the urgent need to construct ablution facilities, there is need to repair dilapidated building blocks and also replacing school furniture that was last bought in 1984 during its commissioning.
"We recently raised the issue with our legislator Edmund Mukaratirwa, who pledged to source desks and chairs for the school and we are very optimistic that his promise will be followed through," Dube said.
However, a group of the school's former students under the banner of Former Dorset Students Steering Committee have also joined the fundraising drive and are looking at ways of sourcing 300 bags of cement and roofing material.
Busani Nyoni, the group's interim chairperson, said their target was to pool their financial resources together and ensure that the school would be among the best within Shurugwi district.
"As former students we need to complement efforts being done by the school development committee and some of the material is in the process of being sourced by our members," Nyoni said.
He added that a Canada-based former student and teacher has pledged to assist with procurement of doors and their frames.
Other former students include those in the media fraternity, legal, health and construction among others. A prominent Bulawayo-based lawyer who is also an ex-student has also pledged several bags of cement as well roofing and other ancillary material towards the completion of an unfinished classroom block.
The school has a grinding mill as part of its income-generating project whose proceeds are channelled towards the institution's upkeep..