Achievements at Mbollet-Ba School, The Gambia
New Nursery Facility
Mbollet-ba village school takes children from Age 5. Since 2017, the benefit from attending school for students in Early Years classes has risen sharply.
Our Global School, in partnership with Gambia's Ministry of Education, with volunteer architects from Cass School of Art & Design, and working with the village community, created a new facility for the three youngest classes. Completed in 2016 and commissioned in February 2017, the classrooms are now the focus for developing an appropriate nursery curriculum. The language of instruction is local Serere not colonial English, and the syllabus develops skills of attention, co-operation and problem-solving.
OGS ran the project from concept to delivery. For a full description and list of our partners and supporters, go here.
Buildings for the new nursery. Made in local clay bricks and specially designed for ventilation and access to shaded play areas, this facility gives local children a chance to develop pre-school skills such as imagination and collaboration
The contract to build the facilities was given to local people, ensuring income and experience of construction to the community.
New toilets for students & teachers
This 2016 initiative saw the community from Hedsor Parish in Buckingham commit to working with Our Global School to provide proper sanitation for school students and teachers.
The £1000 raised through Hedsor's campaigning, provided a total of 6 toilet units with septic tanks and water access, enabling 400 students and 20 staff to maintain hygiene in dignified and easy-to-clean facilities. The new nursery has its own facilities, bringing the total number of toilets on site to 9.
Market for village women's sales
In 2015 Our Global School with funding from partners in Italy and UK funded Mbollet-Ba village to construct a market. Women in the village asked us to help raise their incomes.
Growing vegetables for sale in the village shared allotments is one of the main activities of women. They would like to sell by the boxload. But when they travel to town (30 mins, cost about $0.50) they can't get good prices: the traders know they have come from far and must sell at any cost. Answer: a roadside roofed and hygenic market where women can sell easily in quantity. We supported the cost of materials, while the village men laboured for free to construct it.
The finishing touches of the market are a sign painting session with school Art teacher Lynne, and Musa Corr the local champion of this project.
During OGS visits to Mbollet-Ba, medically trained team members run free prescribing and advice clinics: here Salusbury School nurse Debbie Grant and village health worker Lamin Saidy are administering.
Basic Health Care
Poor health limits the economic and social lives of many villagers. Our Global School has supported the training of three citizens in basic health and nursing. Whenever possible, we provide supplies for medically qualified villagers to prescribe.
Our dream project which we hope to achieve around 2020, is a permanent village health post. Gambia's ministry of Health has met us and confirmed they will fund the staffing and operating costs of village level health unit for Mbollet-Ba and its surrounding villages, a population of around 10,000 people who currently have no access to healthcare.
The main challenges to health in Mbollet-Ba are skin infections, wounds, oral health, gastro-entritic diseases, maternal health and childhood ENT conditions. We also run a health awareness days for villagers, in a "people's university" format, where basic hugiene and prevention are taught.
The great shoe donation 2018
Shoes are a crucial possession for the students in Mbollet-Ba. Education is free but you have to have shoes to attend school - that's the Government rule. For people in a subsistence economy like this, shoes are often really hard to afford. The cheapest second hand shoes are the same price as a whole family's rice portion for a day.
Salusbury families donated nearly 400 pairs of shoes and the Salusbury children on this expedition set up a full "shop" at the school where fitting and distribution of shoes took place. It took two days to fit everyone. Thanks to all parents and children at Salusbury for donating and covering the costs of transport. And especially to Lynne Whiteread for organising.