Category Archives: News

all news

Sierra Leone Sanaya Academy Freetown – Update

Westminster Foundation  Trustee Alan Wolstencroft has recently returned from a trip to  Freetown where he was able to check on the progress at the Sanaya Academy, where the Foundation is supporting the building of a classroom block.

Alan was also overseeing the distribution of a large quantity of humanitarian aid items that had recently been shipped to the country courtesy of Westminster Group Plc.

Staff from Westminster Aviation Security Services Ltd have been visiting and monitoring the project throughout the building programme, which started last November.

Alan is now pleased to be able to report that Phase 1 of the project (the building of 2 classrooms) had been completed just prior to his visit , with just a few finishing touches still needed.

Alan commented that he was delighted with the outward appearance of the new building but was somewhat surprised when turning the corner when he noticed that there were 3 steel doors leading off the veranda.

The school representatives explained that they had been able to raise sufficient funds during the building programme than enabled them to construct an extra classroom. Showing the Foundation that they are doing all they could to improve the facilities at the school.

Alan commented that it is always great when working on a project such as this that the school is also contributing  towards the project and not just expect everything to be done for them.

The Foundation likes to support a project with a “Hand Up” and not just provide a total  “Hand Out”,  the Sanaya Academy has from the outset of our involvement has demonstrated its’ commitment to try and help themselves.

The completed 3 classrooms measure 6 metres square and are capable of seating up to 45 students.

Part of the support provided by the Foundation was to supply 20 school desks and 140 chairs which had been donated by three local organisations in the Banbury area. These had been shipped on the container and were delivered to the school in time for the official opening of the classroom block which took place during Alan’s visit.

There were enough desks to fully equip one classroom and enough chairs for all three classrooms. This provided a cost saving to the project as the school only needed to make enough wooden desks for two of the classrooms and no wooden benches were needed.

It is hoped to start Phase 2, the second three classroom block, in the next few days, there is a quantity of sand and granite stones left over from Phase 1 of the project to kick start the process.  If all goes to plan the foundations will be laid prior to the onset of the rainy season which is due to start at the end of May.

If you are interested in supporting this project we have a “shopping list” with prices of various items for both the building and the equipment / furniture.

Sanaya Shopping list

Item Unit Cost (SLL) Unit cost £
Cement for bricks (50kg bags)   55,000             6.00
Cement for mortar: foundation, paving, plastering  55,000            6.00
Iron rods (0.5″) 53,000             5.50
Granite stones (truck trips) 3,500,000          370.00
Red stones (truck trips) 450,000            50.00
Sand (truck trips) 600,000            65.00
Timber (boards) 35,000             4.00
Binding Wire (rolls) 350,000             40.00
Doors (metal) 700,000             75.00
Earth for back-filling of foundation (truck trips) 100,000            10.50
PHASE 2. ROOFING & CEILING
Zinc (roofing sheets bundles) 600,000            65.00
Roofing boards:
2″x 6″  37,000             4.00
1″x12″  40,000             4.25
Corner ridges  45,000              4.75
Ceiling joice: 2 x 3  20,000              2.00
Celotex – ceiling boards  43,000              4.50
Filets (bundle)  40,000              4.25
PHASE 3. PAINTING
White wash (litres) 10,000             1.00
Oil paint (gallons) 120,000            12.50
Thinner (litres) 15,000             1.50
Paint brushes  15,000             1.50
FURNITURE
Joint desk & chair (one per two pupils) 80,000             8.50
Classroom blackboards 70,000              7.50

 

To make a donation use this link

Trustee to receive an award

It has just been announced that Trustee Alan Wolstencroft is to  receive a Rotary  “Champions of Change award”  (one of only 12 awarded annually), with other Rotarian’s from across the country, at a ceremony hosted by the Lord Mayor of Cardiff in Cardiff City Hall in May 2018.

Denis Spiller, President of Rotary International in Great Britain & Ireland, commented:-
“The selfless and truly life-changing impact of our champions really demonstrate that we can all make a difference. Alan’s work in Freetown has given the communities a new lease of life. He is a very worthy recipient of a Rotary Champions of Change award.”

Humanitarian aid container

Westminster Foundation recently utilised the unused space in a sea freight container being sent to Sierra Leone by the Westminster Group Plc.

The space which was approximately 50% of the container was used to ship humanitarian aid items for a number of projects that Westminster Foundation are involved with the Freetown area.

The consignment consisted of:-

140 plastic stacking chairs, 20 school tables, a steel filing cabinet & steel storage cupboard will be donated to the Sanaya Memorial Academy School which the Foundation supports.

Wheelchairs, zimmer frames, commodes, privacy screens, crutches & walking sticks will be donated to a local clinic.

A consignment of assorted books will go to the Liverpool Community School in Waterloo, a project run by one of the Foundation Trustees, Alan Wolstencroft.

There is also a large amount of clothing and sports kit that will be distributed to several communities located close to the airport where Westminster are based.

‘Care for a Cuppa!’ – Supporting Katharine House Hospice

On Thursday 11th May 2017 staff at Westminster Group plc held a coffee morning supporting Katharine House Hospices’ ‘Care for a Cuppa’ initiative.

Staff gathered for Tea, Coffee, Bacon & Sausage rolls, cakes, pastries & fruit, whilst supporting Katharine House with donations for their morning treats.

Through staff donations and Westminster Group Foundation matching this we were able to deliver a cheque for £200 to Katharine House, to add to their campaign.  Westminster Group plc have supported Katharine House Hospice with various fundraising activities over the years including Fireworks displays, raffles, Christmas Card collections and we were very pleased to have the opportunity to do so again.

Thank you to all who came and to those who prepared the coffee morning.

Shipment of computer equipment & clothing to Sierra Leone

We are please to announce that a shipment of computer equipment and clothing is on it’s way to Sierra Leone.

Computer equipment was donated by Allseas Global Logistics on behalf of the Light of Love foundation. This will be sent to the Marc Bolan School Of Music And Film, Makeni, Sierra Leone.

Clothing was donated by Westminster Staff and Staff & Pupils at Sibford school.

WG Foundation shipment

IMG_6549

Many thanks to all those that have made contributions. They are very much appreciated by the foundation and those who will be helped.

Chacombe CEVA Primary Academy Children donate kit bags

As part of the ongoing initiative between Chacombe CEVA Primary Academy and Calvary School Lungi Sierra Leone the children of Chacombe sent 100 kit bags purchased with money raised from their weekly tuck shop. They filled the bags with exercise books, pencils, rulers and pencil sharpeners along with letters and pictures from each child.

Calvary School 1

The kit bags were split into age groups and handed out to the children of Calvary School who were over the moon with them and have sent letters and pictures back saying thank you for the lovely donations.

Some of the parents from Chacombe School as well as staff from Westminster Group donated clothes and shoes and these were all handed over to Calvary school to distribute to the children.

Calvary school is a Christian School with approximately 120 children. This number has grown recently due to generous donations and sponsorships from members of the Banbury Rotary Club paying for some of the children’s annual school fees. A mere £30 per child allows them to attend school for a whole year.

The recent Ebola crisis saw the schools closed for many months and even when they reopened numbers were greatly reduced due to parents not being able to afford the fees so seeing the numbers now climb to 120 is fantastic news.

Well done and thank you to the children of Chacombe School for their continued support.

Chacombe CEVA Primary Academy Supports Calvary School

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOn Monday 29th June Alan Wolstencroft Trustee of The Westminster Group Foundation and Joanna Fowler Director of Westminster Aviation Security Services visited Chacombe CEVA Primary Academy to give a short presentation to the children regarding the Calvary School in Lungi Sierra Leone. The presentation was to help the children understand the difficulties families face in schooling children in Sierra Leone, especially after the EBOLA crisis, and the differences between their lives and life in Sierra Leone.

Chacombe CEVA Primary School have very kindly chosen to support the school with funds raised by the children from school events and recently donated their old tables and chairs which were shipped out to Sierra Leone by The Westminster Group Foundation in June and taken to the Calvary School. This donation has improved conditions immeasurably and the children of Calvary School sent a video message to the children and teachers of Chacombe School expressing their gratitude for improving their school.

Chacombe school are now donating a kit bag for each child in the Calvary school and filling each bag with small items for the children, notebooks, pencils and an individual letter. They are also putting a collection box at the school for any second hand shoes, plimsolls and football boots to be donated to Calvary School.

Communications between the schools will continue via The Westminster Group Foundation so not only will this help the children in Sierra Leone but it will also benefit the pupils at Chacombe school and help them understand the differences in their cultures and living standards. The Calvary School has subsequently donated their old wooden benches and tables to a neighbouring school in Sierra Leone where the children had nothing at all to sit on.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Such a simple initiative that has improved two schools and means so much to so many and their gratitude was expressed in writing by their head teacher Abibatu.

“The staff and pupils of this school are very happy and grateful  that the Lord is using you to help us and this community. This effort is a true demonstration of God’s love and care for the poor and needy. We would like to thank the Westminster Group Foundation and Chacombe School who in one way or the other had contributed to the development of this school.”

The Westminster Group Foundation would like to thank Chacombe CEVA Primary School for their kind donations and continued support to The Calvary School

Letter of thanks from Enable The Children

EnableTheChildren_squareI am writing to you to show my great appreciation to the Westminster Group Foundation for shipping out therapy equipment for our disabled children for us. We were so happy to receive the leg gaiters, stability boots, assessment table, positioning bag and the mobility trolley, which would have been impossible to get out here without your help.

Enable the Children is on an exciting journey as we have recently been taken over by World Hope International. We are hoping that we might be able to continue to expand our team and our work to improve the quality of lives of over 400 disabled children in Freetown.

Once again, many thanks for helping us in our work.

Yours Sincerely

Anna Vines
Program Director and Physiotherapist
Enable the Children

Container Shipment to Sierra Leone

Thanks to the generous donations to our recent Ebola appeal we have been able to make a good start in helping the local community in Sierra Leone as they begin to recover from the effects of the Ebola outbreak. This was continued with the shipping of the latest container of humanitarian aid supplies to the region.

The container was packed with filled boxes containing clothes, shoes, educational supplies, school uniforms, school equipment, toys etc This will help families who have been unable to earn a living during the crisis or children unfortunately orphaned as a result.

The container has just arrived in Sierra Leone and should be unpacked in the next couple of weeks.

The school supplies are particularly timely as schools have just started to go back following several months closure during the Ebola Crisis. Many children are now back in school but some parents have struggled to pay the small school fees to be able to send their children back, having been unable to work during the crisis. School fees are typically only around £10 a term per child, but what may seem a relatively small sum to us, it’s the price of a cinema ticket or 3 cups of coffee!, will be hard for some families to find. Education is more important than ever for these children, and should anyone wish to donate towards this they can do so through the website or by contacting us directly. Many thanks to all those who have supported our appeal so far, your contributions, both financial and in goods, are very much appreciated by us and those who will be helped.
Container leaves UK

ISAT Charity Run

Nigel Bostock, a RAF Policeman NCO, currently working at Freetown International Airport in support of the Department for International Development-led effort to combat the spread of Ebola, has undertaken a solo half marathon, running 13 miles around the airfield to raise funds for the Foundations work in the local area. Local Westminster staff were on hand to provide support to Nigel. Donations are still coming in but to date several hundred pounds have been raised by Nigel, with donations coming from the local community at the Airport, colleagues, family and friends of Nigel’s including his local church. It’s not too late to support Nigel’s run and should anyone wish to donate they can do so through the Foundations Donation page. Well done and many thanks to Nigel.

Nigel Bostock ISAT start Jpeg
Jpeg