By Alan Dick, Volunteer and Fundraiser
However , the real highlight for me was the trip to Gunjur in the Southern part of gambia to see the nursery school that was being created from derelict buildings on the site of the present primary school.The project had been conceived and started by a lady called Ali Calvert and I was only too happy to assist with the funding of this project in order to help bring it to fruition - hot off the press, the 'clerk of works' (the redoubtable Kira) has reported excellent progress.In the fullness of time, the AOT would also like to provide first aid facilities at this school, and hopefully this will be funded by the recent generosity of the Greggs of the Midlands employees.
My week in the Gambia also afforded me the time to experience other aspects of the country, most notable of which was our trip up river to Juffureh ( the village brought to fame by Alex Haley's novel Roots) - this visit left me with mixed emotions as the abject poverty of the villagers was only too apparent and you left with the feeling that any financial benefit from the marketing of this attraction did not actually find its way into the pockets of those that most needed it.Given the plethora of bird-watching opportunities that exist in the Gambia, James did also try to turn me into an ornithologist - he failed to do so, but at least I can now tell the difference between a violet turaco and a purple glossy starling !!
By James Holden
By Laura Holden, Trustee
It was ‘Nation’s Day’ (former Commonwealth Day) when we visited, so the children were in their best clothes – some traditional, some Westernised, but all looking their best. Some of the little girls had colourful foil wrapped sweets and shells braided into their hair. All the children brought their own lunch for this special day.
Fanding and the teachers proudly showed us the classrooms (their walls adorned by wonderful alphabet pictures), the work books of the children, then the store room, the four toilets and the kitchen.
The News Diary is a regular account of all that is happening at The African Oyster Trust. Please pop back for regular updates, follow us on Twitter or sign up for our RSS feed to have the latest news sent straight to your computer!
The news diary is written by a number of people close to the work of the African Oyster Trust, including founder James Holden, his co-directors, trustees and volunteers.