Welcome to the Bansang Educational Appeal
The Bansang Educational Appeal (BEA) was set up in October 2008. It is a charity that aims to help the children of Bansang, The Gambia to complete their school education.
The BEA has formed links with schools in Bansang. By working with head-teachers, teachers and students the BEA can identify areas where support will benefit the schools. We sponsor specific students at senior level paying enrolment fees, study fees, providing uniform and stationery and lunch where possible.
Developing countries are struggling to lift themselves out of poverty, often for reasons beyond their control, but without educating their children this is almost impossible. Education leads to opportunities in life for our sponsored children and their families. Your help and support really does make a difference.
Annabel Kerr spent 18 months, between 2004 and 2006, working in Bansang Hospital. During this time she met many pupils who were keen to learn, but lacked the financial support to remain in school.
Why such a charity?
Around Bansang most families are subsistence farmers who might be able to sell some excess produce after the harvest.
Often an extended family has one person in paid employment or self employed in business. This person on an income from 4000 Dalasi (£55) a month upwards may be expected to support 5-20 family members. Currently a bag of rice to feed a family for a month costs around 1725 Dalasi.
Most families find it difficult to fund the costs of their children going to school. Children who have lost one or both parents struggle to find sponsors to enable them to attend school. Education is now free but supplementary costs still need to be met such as uniform, books, shoes, extra study fees and writing materials.
There are 3 objectives to achieving the Appeal’s mission:
To sponsor the education of students at senior secondary levels with the aim to assist students to gain vocational positions or enter tertiary education (with further support at this level a possibility).
Students are identified as struggling to meet fee payments and asked to apply for sponsorship, then their application is assessed by the school on need and academic ability.
To provide educational materials for the schools in Bansang.
We will look at resources currently available and supplement these with locally sourced products where possible.
The BEA will support local teachers in improving their own skills and knowledge.
Schools in the UK are linking with schools in Bansang and are looking at skill exchange visits between teachers.
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Bansang Educational Appeal raises money through regular giving, donations and fundraising events.