St Catherine’s College students spent an action packed week in The Gambia in February.
During the trip, the youngsters explored the local area, visited a nature reserve, a fishing village, schools and families. Many of the African families living in Gunjur have no electricity or running water but they gave students a warm welcome.
Meeting the Women’s Literacy Group was an eye-opener as these women’s families could not afford to send them to school when they were younger. Now married with children themselves, they are just starting to learn how to hold a pencil and write their names.
The school had raised money for the trip through holding events and donations from parents. They donated items including a computer, blood pressure monitors and stethoscopes for student nurses who run voluntary clinics in the poorest villages.
With the support of Football for Peace, pupils helped teach African children new games and sporting values, as well as hosting a football festival.
St Catherine’s College principal, Solomon Berhane, said:,“This was St Catherine’s second visit to The Gambia. It helped students to understand how difficult life can be living in a developing country, although the people are very happy with what each new day brings - especially when it’s a group of English students to interact with.
“Our students donated numerous gifts and bought sacks of rice and cooking oil. They found the gratitude of these people a very emotional experience.
“We plan to send another group of students in 2021 and are looking forward to seeing the differences our donations have made to improving the life and the education of the children who live in this amazing community.”