The Ashbourne Hotel is currently down one receptionist, and it’s not for any untoward reason. On the contrary, Charlotte Lord’s absence at The Ashbourne is a local charity’s gain. And Charlotte explains why here:
“Over the course of my studies in beauty therapy my tutor Katie Major (who is also Adult Supervisor & Volunteer for the Gambia Project) participated in several trips to The Gambia. After hearing about it, and seeing her stories in pictures I really felt inspired to go and help in The Gambia myself. Katie gave me the amazing opportunity to go out with her on her next trip.
“Going out there totally changed my perspective on life. It made me realise that the things that people generally worry about in this country are relatively minor. The people out in The Gambia are so happy even with the severely limited facilities they have. It isn’t possible to help everyone out there, but I reasoned that if I made a change in just one person’s life, then that is good enough for me.
“Thanks to Sheena Carroll – Founder, Trustee & Director of The Gambia Project – the people of The Gambia now stand a chance of a better lifestyle and standard of living. It’s peoples’ continuous support that helps to keep this charity running.
“Over the last five years we have raised over £20,000 and now currently sponsor 65 children over 3 different regions within the Gambia, including a children’s orphanage, a youth help foundation for abandoned babies and local communities. However there still remains a further 20 children that do not have a sponsor.”
Places We Visit
The SOS Village
This year we will be teaching ‘the menstrual cycle’ to try to reduce pregnancy. We have made a replica of cycle beads & we are going to explain the best times to avoid falling pregnant, the times when you are more likely to fall pregnant etc. We will also be teaching sexual health in general. In the past we have provided equipment & renovated classrooms.
Saint Joseph’s School
Here we have renovated classrooms and provided equipment. We do general teaching within this school with all ages varying from nursery through to year 11.
This is the one I personally concentrate on the most. This is where the abandoned babies live. On my last visit we had a container take a lot of baby equipment out i.e bottles, nappies, milk, clothing & mosquito nets. The previous group also helped teach first aid.
We have helped with medications, sending children to school, and helping to buy rice for the families.
Settlement in Siffoe
The last time I visited The Gambia this was a waste land where people lived. Since then we have helped provide canoes so they have access to the sea for fresh fish, and wind up torches as there is no electricity on this settlement. This time we are helping to make a banana plantation.”
The Ashbourne Hotel was very proud to sponsor the trip in a very small way by providing t-shirts for Charlotte to take for the children….and we look forward to hearing more about the trip on Charlotte’s return.
Well done Charlotte – we’re all really proud of you!