We first featured the Lisa Kent Memorial Trust back in August of 2009, a charity doing fantastic work in The Gambia working in the area of child education. They have continued with their work and below is an update on their activities. Please visit their website for more information.
The Lisa Kent Memorial Trust is a registered charity in the UK and The Gambia for educating children. It was founded in December 2003 following the tragic death of Lisa Kent. (The daughter of very dear friends).
The Trust built & established a very successful nursery school, which accommodates 154 children, most of whom are sponsored from the UK. Children start at the nursery school at the age of 3, if sponsorship continues will move to primary school at 7 or 8. The Trust has funded the teachers through a three-year teacher-training course, which they have completed during the holiday periods. Many schools in the Gambia do not have qualified teachers, so the Trust feels we are exceptionally lucky to have well respected and educated teachers who are all very committed to their school.
The school is fortunate to have its own water supply, toilets and electricity, although this can be spasmodic. The official opening ceremony was attended by The Head of the Gambian Early Childhood Development Dept and the Kent family.
The Trust helps other local Gambian schools through our sponsorship programmes and providing educational aids where appropriate. We encourage sponsors, who support a specific chosen child to carry on with the sponsorship programme throughout the child’s education, which the Trust oversees.
The Trust purchased two very large plots of land at Busumbala, a very undeveloped area, which is gradually increasing with compounds and families. Permission was sought from the Dept of Education to build a cycle school, nursery, primary and secondary age children. We can potentially take up to 400 children. After a huge amount of fundraising we are delighted that we now have a two storey building with 8 classrooms, of which 4 will be in operation from September. The school also has a bore hole, toilets and shower. We are hoping to use solar panels to enable the school to have the use of some electricity. Furniture has been sent out from the UK, some new and some very kindly donated by schools who no longer have a use for them.
This build has taken a huge amount of work by the local tradespeople, volunteers on our working parties and support from friends of the Lisa Kent Trust. If you are interested in joining us on a working party, which is tailor made to suit individual requirements, please get in touch. You would certainly have a fantastic time experiencing life in a third world country.
We also run sponsorship programmes to enable many of the children to attend school, these are £10 pcm. The Trust is always grateful for any help anyone is able to give.