On Saturday 31 July David and Janet drove our shippers in London with supplies for the school. This is the first shipment for almost a year. The consignment includes soap, face masks, toothpaste, girls’ hygiene products, classroom materials and uniforms. Our shippers are Marie Sinneh Ltd whose depot is in Bermondsey in the shadow of the Shard. Thanks to everyone who donated goods and to Ramsey Motors for the loan of the van.
I am pleased to report that all is well and we have no cases in children or their families.
Teachers have been vigilant and pupils have received advice and training on the precautions necessary to avoid infection.
We maintain regular contact by electronic means although we are unable to travel
School term ended on Friday 19th and I feel sure that everyone, especially the teachers will enjoy the festivities.
Lots of movement of pupils going to stay with relatives which may cause a possible transmission issue. This was one way that Ebola spread so quickly but hopefully now the authorities will have learned
The virus doesn’t seem to have been a major problem in West Africa although information is very sparse and limited in validity.
BBC data records 2500 confirmed cases in Sierra Leone with sadly 75 deaths. These are most likely to be in densely populated Freetown rather than in rural villages.
School end Friday 19th December and re-opens Monday 4th January 2021.
I have been following the unfortunate events around the Corona virus pandemic with heightened concern. The sheer number of confirmed cases and the dazzling death rate all around you, our loved ones, have compounded my anxiety. Each passing moment, hour and day, deepens my sadness about the grave danger that you have to contend with.
There can be nothing terrifying than to find oneself in a situation like this where one is apparently powerless and having nowhere to run to. The whole WORLD is on lock down in the face of a merciless plague.
In Sierra Leone, as you would have heard, we have recorded a few confirmed cases and in addition to several other measures, the government has ordered a lock down starting this Sunday.
At this very difficult moment, dear Trustees and friends of The David School, as the world continues to collectively fight off this anathema, I stand in solidarity with all of you in UK and Norway in prayers for God’s guidance, protection and grace over you and your loved ones.
Please continue to do everything to stay safe and may God save us all.
Foday Sahid Kanu
Mathematics teacher at The David School, Mile 36.
The Charity Annual Meeting, due to be held on Thursday 21st May 2020, has been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Trustees Report and Accounts – See here (last Para)
David School Update March 2020
The Corona virus epidemic is changing many aspects of our lives here in the UK and also causing increasing concerns in West Africa.
We heard last weekend that the Government of Sierra Leone had introduced two weeks compulsory quarantine for visitors from the UK. This was followed by the cancellation of flights to Freetown making any visits impossible in the foreseeable future.
Teachers are currently insisting on all children washing their hands on arrival at school and taking everyone’s temperature. Lessons learned from the Ebola crisis two years ago. The Charity is supporting their efforts by providing soap, additional guidance and encouragement.
On a more positive note the first food supplies have been delivered to school under the scheme to feed all primary pupils at lunchtime. Training will be given to parent volunteers who will prepare and serve the meals. We hope this will begin as soon as the school re-opens.
ROTARY CORNER THURSDAY 5 MARCH 2020 – An extract from the Peterborough Telegraph – Written by Rotarian Janet Cooke
Rotarian David Wallwork, disturbed by what he saw on a visit to Sierra Leone, persuaded his family he needed to set up a school to help young people gain an education. He could never have envisaged the scale of what he would achieve. With the support of Rotary clubs at home and abroad his successes have been phenomenal. Imagine his pride now some of the youngsters he has helped have graduated from university.
Umaru Jalloh expresses his gratitude in his own words (abridged): “As I sat in the National Stadium in Freetown, dressed in my graduation regalia awaiting the conferment of a Law Degree by the Chancellor of the University of Sierra Leone (President of the Republic of Sierra Leone), I reminisced how this came about and how the David School changed the narratives.
After taking my final high school examination, I went to my uncle’s subsistence farm close to Mile 36 to await my result. It was excellent, satisfying university admission requirements. At last, I could follow my dream – to read Law.
This dream was shattered. Law, the most expensive course on campus, was beyond what my parent could provide. I was on the verge of dropping out of school.
In 2014, Mr Fofanah, principal of the David School, came to my house to ask me to teach as a volunteer in his school. I accepted – an opportunity to help humanity. In 2015, proprietor David Wallwork and other trustees visited the school. They offered to help me go through my university education. I was dumbstruck.
In 2016, I was admitted into the University of Sierra Leone to read Law. Reading law was daunting but I remained steadfast and focused on chasing my dream. As I write, thanks to the David School, I hold a Bachelor of Law (with honours) degree.
My story is just one. The school has impacted many lives. Despite meagre funds, it is setting an indelible footprint that shall forever thrive. This charitable school provides free, quality education and other amenities to the people of Mile 36 and beyond. David Wallwork foresaw the need to provide education to vulnerable and less privileged children. I thank David, his wife, daughter and Michael Houlden whose support and advice has been invaluable. I also thank those “unknown” people who have donated resources to the school. They cannot imagine how valuable their support has been.
The fight isn’t over. My ultimate aim to be a lawyer has not been reached. I still have to do a year at the Sierra Leone Law School. It’s short but stringent and needs further support.
The David School is changing the lives of the people in Mile 36. You need not be a millionaire to be a humanitarian. Every act of kindness can greatly influence someone’s life.”
Rotarians making a difference.
Picture from today’s graduation ceremony. National Stadium, Freetown. Umaru Jalloh left, Abdulai Bangura right with Alfred our much valued driver.
I am pleased to report that we now have two teachers with Honours degrees
Umaru Jalloh Law
Abdulai Bangura Chemistry
Thank you to Norwegians who have sponsored their education.
A massive step forward for our school.
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