Learning about Gambia
The smallest country in Africa, Gambia, was the subject of the talk at the April meeting of Old Buckenham WI. Not only is it the smallest but also one of the poorest countries of the world.
Janet Clark, the speaker, and her husband were moved by the poverty of the people when they holidayed in Gambia a few years ago. When they arrived back home in Norfolk they decided to start a charity – GATE – Gambian Aid Through Education.
Raising funds in Britain enabled the couple to buy mosquito nets, to drill wells, provide vegetable seeds and secure education for the children of the villages they support. Literacy and numeracy rates are low in this impoverished West African country with no known natural resources. Tourism is limited to the coastal strip and the rest of the population depend on fishing and farming for an income. So far the charity has put three teachers through teacher training college and is continually looking for sponsors for their various projects that make a real difference to rural communities.
Susan Hunter, the President, gave a short report about the Annual Meeting of the Norfolk Federation of WI at St Andrew's Hall in March. The excellent speakers included the national chairman, Janice Langley, and the Antiques Roadshow expert Eric Knowles.
The annual bursary provided by Old Buckenham WI to help pay for a course at the WI Denman College in Oxfordshire was drawn and the winner this year of £150 was Jenni Cooke.