April 2015 newsletter - Generous donations from our supporters

This year we were able to take an unprecedented 55 boxes and crates of donations to our Sohm schools, via container space kindly provided, free of charge, by our good friends at Football Gambia.

The logistics were difficult and time-consuming. But the results were spectacular, and incredibly well received, as we will describe, below.
The photo of the loaded truck gives an indication of some of the transport challenges we were presented with in getting the donations to the Sohm schools!

Bikes on top of the pile, of goods
 from London to Sohm!
But, HUGE thanks from the very grateful Sohm recipients to each of the following

Little Heath School, Redbridge

They donated 30 good-order computers (desk tops and laptops), that they were upgrading, together with a number of keyboards, mice (mouses?), and desktop printers. We paid to have them overhauled and cleaned up and to have a modern Windows Office suite installed on each of them, and provided ink supplies and back-ups for the printers.

Students expressing gratitude for generous
 PC and printers' donation from Little Heath
The vast majority have gone to the Senior Secondary school (with a small number going to the Lower Basic -primary - school).

PCs being delivered

 to computer room at
 Senior school
And, laptops 

being fired up

Eastlea Community School, Newham

Donated a range of redundant/surplus school science equipment (microscopes, electrical testers etc) and maths and English text books, together with a range of school library books and an assortment of dictionaries.

These have been distributed between the two schools and are greatly appreciated.

Science equipment being eagerly
 inspected by Sohm's head of science
The senior school had NO science equipment until we made a small donation last year - relying solely on book- learning to understand the principles of science! The Lower Basic (primary) school has no complete sets of textbooks in ANY subject, for class use. The donation of English and maths books will be a great boost to encouraging the youngsters to work on their own, and negotiate their way around text books.  Key learning skills!

Much-needed books, gratefully
 received by the Lower Basic school
It is so easy for schools and others in the UK to discard what we regard as out-of-date materials and consign them to dustbins - but they can offer such benefit in remote communities in developing countries. And are massively appreciated by people who do not benefit from Western wealth.

Newham Woodcraft Folk - hands across the seas

Newham Woodcraft is currently celebrating its 80th anniversary, and are embarking on "80 Greats" (or initiatives)to commemorate the achievement. The pupils of Sohm's Schools have been the beneficiaries of one of these.

Inspired by the imagination and generosity of group leader, "Bill" Bremner, Newham's "Woodies" donated and restored seven bikes for the use of the Sohm schools and their students (see them being transported in the photo, above!). 

Woodies' bike donation, well received
These are highly prized and sought-after, and can each massively reduce the travel-to-study time of many pupils currently walking and hour each way in searing heat, from remote villages to get to their local school.

One of the bikes has been given as a "staff bike" to the Lower Basic school, which will be used for contacting parents swiftly, when their children fall ill, or have difficulties at school. The others will go to those pupils with the furthest travel-to-school journeys at the Senior Secondary school.

School caretaker can't believe
 his luck, with the boots!
Additionally, Woodcraft, themselves were recently given 25 pairs of good condition, second hand, hiking boots. These were surplus to their own needs and requirements, so were sent to Sohm. They have been welcomed as if they were gold-dust, being highly prized for confronting the floods in the very rainy summer season.

Boots and dictionaries ready for distribution
We look forward to delivering more surplus equipment and stock in future years - but there are big questions over our ability to access free/low cost transport for the future. We will keep plugging away to find the ways and means, if our generous donors can continue to extend their generosity.

So, a huge thanks to our supporters, above, for their material donations. The cash donations given by many others, too many to mention here, have enabled us to pay for customising the ICT equipment, and funding the other projects we have considered on this blog over recent months.

1 comment:

  1. All the items given to Sohm schools came at the right time and are really helping a lot. All thanks given to you John, Sandra and all the donors. Thanks to you all once again.
    John or whosoever out there,i Mr Jawara the ICT teacher at the senior school,need your help to upgrade my knowledge in ICT.