After the successful communication managing BEA schools’ support remotely during Covid-19 we continue to build on the networks developed to provide support throughout the year.
In October 2022 Jabou Kongira, former Daru principal, travelled to Kombo to buy educational materials that were then distributed amongst all the schools around Bansang that BEA supports.
In lieu of direct funds, 11 laptops were shipped to Bansang in June 2022, for school teachers to purchase from the school, with these funds being used towards student sponsorship.
Annabel visited Bansang in December 2022, taking along her husband, Kwame and 5 year old daughter Bethany. During her trip she visited 13 schools in the area.
Futayel School is a lower basic school in its infancy, new to BEA support. Its principal, Mr Bah, moved from Fuga Lower Basic School and petitioned BEA for help. Despite having few resources Mr Bah is keeping the school environment conducive for learning and also developing a school garden. BEA were able to help out supplying large cooking pots. These were made locally in Bansang from recycling tin cans.
Although BEA had already purchased learning materials for the schools, some schools were lacking basic essentials to make the classroom environment comfortable for learning. Nursery children (Early Child Development (ECD)) often sit on the floors, not having suitable furniture. Listening to school principals and teachers BEA provided cement to smooth school floors preventing them becoming so dusty. BEA provided mats for children to sit on to the schools in Mabali and Daru. Water supplies for schools usually come from a pump or borehole in the school grounds. Some schools lack even this and need to bring water from the local village pumps. To help BEA has provided water buckets and drinking cups for classrooms, along with plastic kettles to wash hands. We also supplied plates and spoons for lunch as some schools lacked these.
Photo material distribution L-R: Daru principal Bunja Jawara, BUSSS senior teacher Amat Ndimballan, Mabali principal Amadou Baldeh, Former Daru principal Jabou Kongira and myself.
Most schools struggle with poor quality blackboards, so we arranged for these to be renovated.
BEA is sponsoring 58 students this year at BUSSS across grades 10-12. Most students from last years’ grade 12 got good results in their WASCE and have gone onto further education. Annabel was able to chat with 56 of the students individually, ensuring their educational needs were being met.
Fatoumata is now in grade 12, currently taking her final exams. She lives with her father and brother after her mum passed away a few years ago. She hopes to study medicine if she can get support from The Gambian Government.
Amie is 18 and lives with her grandma in Bansang. Her parents live at the coast where her dad is working. She has started grade 10 this year studying the science stream having got the maximum mark possible in her grade 9 exams last year.
Muhammed is 20 and from a village near Bansang, Misera. His father is a subsistence farmer and very sadly his mother died 8 years ago. He started in grade 10 this year and is studying the Arts and Humanities stream. He enjoys reading in his spare time.
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