Education

 

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The Harry Brown Block. A two classroom extension, paid for through sponsorship funding.

There are three key areas of support we try to give to Penyem: Health, Education and Sport. In 2005 we began a child sponsorship scheme. Our target was to gain sponsorship from Northampton people for 12 children from Penyem. This sponsorship would allow a child to attend school, receive a uniform, shoes and books. Also they would get free lunches, social and health care. We achieved our target within days! To date we have 100 children sponsored, with the sponsors now being worldwide.

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The new school toilet block.

The sponsored children are now at all three different phases of education. Some are at Nursery School, some at Lower Basic (Primary) School and some are at Secondary level. Those who are at Lower Basic School have to travel (walk) to not so close villages. Penyem has a Nursery School and an Upper Basic School. The cost per annum is about £45 for the youngest children, £90 for the Primary age children and £115 for the older children. This can vary depending on exchange rates. What we try to do is to find two sponsors for each child. We do this for a number of reasons. The main reason being that if a child loses a sponsor, there is still another one to continue sponsorship. Another reason is that it allows surplus funding which is of benefit to all of the children. This could include extra school materials and building projects. It is now over 10 years since NTF started this project and we are now beginning to see it’s success. In our two main building projects show here, plumbing and electrical work was done by local tradesmen who had come through our student sponsorship programme. 

To sponsor a child please visit our Donate page.

We also have a syndicate of people who sponsor the teachers in the Nursery School by donating £10 a month. This allow the teachers to be paid a fair wage and helps attracting higher quality teachers, and retaining them. A teacher is paid between £25 and £30 a month.

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Kingswood Academy become Gambian for a day!

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A laptop is presented to an older student, sent by her UK sponsor.

We also run a student exchange scheme. Currently it involves the students in Year 12 and 13 at The Kingswood Secondary Academy, Corby. A group of students will commit to visit Penyem and sponsor a child. They then spend a few months fundraising and eventually they will travel to The Gambia. When they are there they will meet their sponsored child, spend time with the families and become a native of Penyem for a day! A magical experience. The fundraising is an important part of their year. In 2014 the students were able to buy a replacement Community Ambulance for the village. In 2012 a new school toilet block was built using the funds raised by the students visiting that year. Other groups have helped the refurbishment of the village Health Centre.

We have a number of individual sponsors to take their sponsorship beyond the ‘normal’ level. Some have sent laptops to their older sponsored child. Some have sent clothing. Some have sponsored their children through higher education.

Obviously, all the children have got older! Some are now are at the stage of leaving school. In 2016, we introduced a Bursary Scheme. This is a small fund that school leavers can apply to for support with further education. Everyone is invited to apply. However, priority is given to applicants who are hoping to further their studies and qualifications in careers that can be of benefit to Penyem Village.

To sponsor a child please visit our Donate page.

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Students at Kingswood Academy Visiting Their Sponsored Children




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