About Bamalete Lutheran School of Nursing
The school of nursing started in a very small way in 1934 and has grown over the intervening years to become a health training institution affliated to the University of Botswana and financed by the government of Botswana.
The Rev.Heinrich Pfitzinger requested the Lutheran Mission of Hemannsburg, Germany to send his sister Emma who happened to be a qualified nurse and a midwife as well as a deconess to help him care for the sick members of the Ramotswa community. Sister Emma Pfitzinger arrived in 1934 and started her nursing work in a roundavel and also undertook home visits in the village. The work increased, to such an extent that she required assistance from interested young women. At this time there were no training facilities for nurses in the whole country and the nearest hospital was situated in Lobatse – 50 kilometers South of Ramotswa. Sister Emma realized that assistance was urgently needed and recruited and trained people from the village. At this time the building of the Hospital facilities commenced with the erection of an Out patients department, a dispensary and a Maternity department with a delivery room and eight beds.
The workload increased to such an extent that more beds were required and the recruitment of a doctor. There was a School next door to the small hospital, which could no longer accommodate all the pupils and it was decided that a new school be built else where in the village. The tribe therefore handed over the vacant school buildings to the Mission, and these buildings were then converted into wards and operating theatre. The doctor and sisters commenced training local women in basic nursing and referred to them as “Nurse Aides”. There was still no formal training school for nurses
In 1969, the new hospital was opened and the old wards and theatre were converted in to store rooms, a Maternal and Child Health clinic and a lecture room. At this time, Dr.Kennedy was recruited and took over the teaching of the Nurse Aids. It became difficult because most of them had only a basic knowledge of English. English classes were started by Mrs.Kennedy who was a well trained English teacher for the girls who were keen to learn. This kind of teaching attracted wider interest. An evening school was thus born, which was run by Mrs.Kennedy. A proper syllabus was later drawn up with assistance of the teachers from Ramotswa Secondary School.
The brave went to school every day from 5.00pm to 8.00pm and they did this for up to three years after eight hours work at the hospital. With the arrival of Sister Marianne Dumjahn in 1973, there was a realization that these girls needed to be recognized and upgraded to at least Enrolled Nurses. The government however did not recognize”the home trained” ladies.
The hospital had to take initiative again by building their own training school with funds from “Bread for the world” and money from ELM(Mission). The government gave a go ahead and the government syllabus was adopted and classes started in 1975. The staff including the three doctors, the matron and the sisters took part in the training. Later on two tutors were employed. The year 1977 was a great year for the school. All the girls passed the examinations for Enrolled for Enrolled Nurses provided by Government. However the activities were discontinued, the nurses’ home was used to accomodate nurses and the lecture room was used for meetings and refresher courses.
The school was later re-opened in August 1996. It is important to note that many of the girls in the old school realized their dreams and are now state registered nurses and other are midwives. Many developments have taken place in the school.
Is Lutheran School of Nursing accredited?
We are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), have conditional approval from the Missouri State Board of Nursing, and authorized to operate by the Missouri Department of Higher Education.