IMPOVERISHED mission schools in Africa are to be sent desks, books and other educational materials by a new Catholic charity to be launched next week.
Edald Africa is the brainchild of Doreen Rolfe of Hertfordshire Justice and I'eace Group, who became aware of the huge needs of African schools when she went to the Gambia on holiday two years ago. "I was shocked to discover that in one Catholic missionary school I visited there was only one book in the whole classroom," she said.
On her return, Ms Rolfe contacted head teachers in her area and asked whether they would be willing to donate secondhand desks, hooks and other teaching materials to the school she had visited. "I found teachers were happy to help, particularly as I was able to let them know the exact school in Africa which would benefit from their gift."
Five shipments were sent out to the school, in Banjul, and Ms Rolfe was put in touch with other schools in the Gambia and in Rwanda, in central Africa. "We got more and more requests, mainly for the sort of things we throw away or which cost us very little," she said.