Generous students return home after raising £16,000 for Gambian nursery - The Solihull Observer

Generous students return home after raising £16,000 for Gambian nursery

Solihull Editorial 1st Jan, 2017   0

A TEAM of generous Solihull students have returned home from the Gambian nursery for which they have raised over £16,000 this year.

The group of 30 students from The Sixth Form College have been fundraising for the Jemus Jungkung Jammeh Memorial Nursery and Lower Basic School in Abuko, near Banjul in The Gambia.

They spent a week in the small West African nation, travelling to the school every morning to teach the four to six-year-old children.

Used to rote learning in classes of 50 to 60 students to every teacher, the pupils welcomed the singing, colouring and games they played with the Solihull teenagers.

Jemima Bakalou, aged 17, went on the trip and said: “I enjoyed seeing the different culture and experiencing life in The Gambia and through this trip have learnt to appreciate what I have.”

Fellow Team Gambia member, 17-year-old Laurel Hodges added: “I was surprised by how little the local people had, but how happy they were.

“The trip has given me a better world view and understanding of a developing country.”

This project was set up by Peter Evans from Hamstead Hall School in Handsworth Wood, North Birmingham, who built the Gambian school from the ground up and worked for years to fundraise for the disadvantaged children who attend it.

This is the fourth year that the Sixth Form College have participated in the project, bringing the total amount raised to more than £35,000.

Vice Principal Janice Hamilton said: “Team Gambia 2016 have worked tirelessly all year to raise money and it was wonderful for the students to finally visit the school and see what all that hard work was for.

“I have seen how the students have benefited from this wonderful experience, learning valuable skills that will help them with whatever they go on to do after College.

“All the money we raised will go to the Jemus Jungkung Jammeh Memorial Nursery and Lower Basic School.

“It will be used to continue building three more classrooms, as there is still a waiting list of children who are not currently going to school at all because there is not space for them.

“It is very gratifying to think that we have played a small part in helping these children get an education.”

As well as working at the school, the students also visited mangrove swamps, a monkey sanctuary, Serrakunda fish and textiles market and the newly opened Parliament building in Banjul

They also sampled the local entertainment with traditional dancing and drumming and enjoyed some rest and relaxation on the beach.


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