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For a long time, children in many villages outside of the city have endured a long and arduous daily journey, just to get an education. The situation is improving, following the allocation of 13 million yuan to buy more than 50 new school buses. But more are needed, and for many in the region’s remotest villages, it’s still a long and tough road to class.
School buses start running in Lhasa.
Tibetan children often have to overcome obstacles to get their education. Here in Lhasa, falling ice is an everyday hazard. Because of this, Gama was admitted to school at the age of 10, much later than most children.
Every few days, Gama, who’s now 13, has to travel to Maxiang Center Primary school, some 40 kilometres from home.
Gama said, "My brother and I usually walk to school. My elder brother takes us by car when he can. But I’ve never thought about dropping out."
They often slip on the icy roads. It usually takes about six hours to make the journey, and the weather conditions can be harsh. But things are better than they once were.
Gama said, "It used to take me about two days to get to school, back before the road was built in 2009."
The arrival of a fleet of new school-buses is bringing hope to Gama, and others like her. The buses can only carry 35 children; so many still can’t get on. For Gama in her remote village, waiting for the school bus has become another headache. More buses are needed if all these children are going to make it to school on time, without have to brave the long and winding road.