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Project report

Educational supplies for Infant School, The Gambia Gambia , RUN BY: Global Hands Charity | STATUS: COMPLETED

Bound for The Gambia: Books, flash-cards, pens, glue-sticks and art & craft items

This project is 100% Funded



AUD 422

Raised from 152 people

Nearly two years after we first took our boxes of stationary and books down to the post office and sealed them up carefully for their long trip to The Gambia, I received this email from the new head teacher to say that they got them!

I have copied these emails in their original format without fixing the grammar. There is great heart and soul in Wuyeh's letters.  It made me smile.

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28 November,  2008

hello mccarthy
well am so sorry for not  write you so long time simply because head was at school was travel. I am now the head of geof nursery school.  I was looking for my book at my office i come  across your latter and though  message i understand that you send a box to  school.  well we received it by that time am not there am new  to  that  geof  nursery school.  my name is wuyeh trawally  am now the hed of the school.
Wuyeh Trawally

28 November,  2008

Hi Wuyeh,
What a fantastic surprise to get this email from you! I am very happy to hear from you and also to confirm that our box of books did actually arrive at the Nursery School.   We wondered if they had got lost in the post.  I am so glad to know that you got them!!
If you ever have a camera, I'd love to see some photos of the school and kids.  I imagine it's changed quite a bit in the last few years?
I wish you all the best as head teacher.  Warmest regards to the kids in your remote part of The Gambia.
Take care
Christy McCarthy, Footprints

3 December, 2008

hello  mr christy
well am so much happy to hear from yu i could not belive it  i was thing  that i will not have reply from as it was long time  it almost three to three years back, every one  in school was so much happy to hear from you i print your massege so that we all can see as we did not computer in school  we use internet.
well thank you one hundred time for the book we receive it and children really love them so much but as i told head of school who was there is know there that why you did not hear from us i did not know that you have send a book for the school as i told you i was in my office looking my book i come accross your e mail i ask about you so one of my teacher tell all about you that is the time i plan to write you. i will also try to send you picture of my student and me  if here from you.
hello mr christy i once thank you one hunred time for your kind help for the school  as we all know that education is key of life and we are from very poor community they can take child to school simply because theu can pay the other school this is why we open this school that is the time geof come to gambia  and see our school he is a wanderfull he also help us  too much i hope to here from you soon
from the head wuyeh

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School Students at Geof Prigge Nursery School

The School Committee - working hard!

This was one of the first projects that Footprints supported and we have learnt so much in the two years since we undertook the fund-raising.  With the best intentions, we purchased stationary and books at wholesale cost from an Australian supplier who wanted to help us out.  However,  the postage costs were staggering and The Gambia is one of the few places in the world you cannot get insurance for your packages.   So, we sent them off without any guarantees.

Nursery Students in their bright uniforms.

In the time since, we received reports from Mr Geof Prigge who had heard via his local contacts that "some boxes" had arrived at the school, but there was no way of knowing if they were ours.   We began to think more carefully about accountability for project management and deliverables... and concluded that we should stick to our core fundraising/technology role.

Additionally, we were aware that our decision to purchase goods in Australia - although high quality and truly needed in the primary school - had meant that the funds were spent in a first world country, not rippling through into the economy of the developing nation of The Gambia.  It wasn't hard to see what would further our intention of 'helping those in impoverished communities'.  Again, we learnt from this and look for projects where the local communities and economies can participate and benefit.

In summary, I am incredibly grateful to the new Head Teacher who found his way to a computer and sent me an email about the book boxes.  This alone would not have been a simple task.  And the fact it took nearly two years makes me smile... it is said that good things come to those who wait.  Maybe this is a small part of Africa that's rubbing off on me ? ;-)

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Update Posted 01 Dec 2008.
Christy McCarthy, project co-ordinator at FootprintsNetwork.org

How was it this funded?

Thanks to hundreds of tiny donations from these online businesses and their customers.

World Nomads USA
World Nomads Canada
***World Nomads UK
Global Hands Charity

Global Hands is a “hands on” charity network guided by the philosophy of 'teaching people how to fish rather than giving them a fish'. Currently working with two schools in West Africa and an orphanage in Nepal, the focus is on education and facilitating small sideline opportunites such as vegetable gardens that can improve local diets and provide modest incomes.