NEWSLETTER – December 2016.
SEASONAL GREETINGS – to all our donors, supporters and friends of the Derek Bailey Foundation.
Another year gone already – why does time go by so quickly?
During the year, several trustees have been out to The Gambia and of course we go to the village of Nyofelleh to catch up with all the news and developments taking place there. The most exciting development being that we did decide to go ahead with yet another big project! We just can’t stop ourselves. It was hinted at in my last newsletter. The school is growing rapidly and must operate two shifts per day to fit all the pupils in. We have undertaken to build an annex providing 3 more classrooms. This will allow the school to take on the status of being a Middle School, allowing children going onto grades 7-9 to remain in the village instead of travelling long distances to the nearest town. This often leads to relatively young children being boarded out with other relatives or host families. Our headmaster has followed the progress of some of his former pupils and discovered that their academic progress is detrimentally affected by such arrangements.
Several us were in the village a few weeks ago, to see that a start has been made on the building. Local people – volunteers – have been making bricks and clearing the land. As I write this letter the foundations are being dug and it is hoped that the classrooms will be ready by March 2017.
Whilst in the village we went to see the clinic and the maternity unit which we opened last year. The climate in The Gambia is a harsh one so there are always matters of repairs and general maintenance to be paid for. This year we have had to deal with an infestation of termites – we now need a new door and door frame to the clinic! The clinic has been busy especially during the rainy season with the surge in cases of malaria. Between January and October 64 babies were born in the maternity unit and all were safely delivered.
Back home we continue with all our fund-raising events and have a wonderful team of helpers who are brilliant at teas, washing up and the like and a number of you regularly attend the events we put on. The trustees would like to thank you all for your continuing support – you are all great. With your support, we achieve a lot.
Follow us on Facebook which has all our latest news, visits etc. Also, our web site has been recently up dated.
Best wishes to you all – Pauline.
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