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Pallol Lower Basic School

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Background

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Pallol is a village in the Central River Division on the North Bank of the Gambia River, not far from Janjanbureh (Georgetown). It is about 5km off the main North Bank Road. Pallol Lower Basic School was built with the help of Future in Our Hands (FIOH) in 2006. FIOH is a Swedish-Gambian NGO. It has been working in The Gambia since 1979 and assists with sustainable rural development through schools and communities. Pallol LBS has a link with Raysfield Infants School in Chipping Sodbury, near Bristol, which helps by fundraising, sponsoring and organising teachers' exchange visits.

Peace Corps is a service organisation, funded by the United States Government, which provides suitably qualified volunteers to work in many countries throughout the world. One of their activities in The Gambia is to provide volunteers to help with teaching in schools. Laura Osterman was a Peace Corps Volunteer (PCV) who until recently worked at Pallol Lower Basic School. The Peace Corps does not provide any money for their volunteers to use on school projects, so Laura and Head Teacher Musa M Sanneh requested help from Pageant to repair their leaking rook.

Roof Repairs

Like many schools built by Future in Our Hands, Pallol LBS had roofs covered with large ceramic tiles. By 2014, extreme weather conditions during the rainy seasons resulted in some of the roof tiles becoming cracked or even falling off, and leaks were causing water damage to the classrooms. As replacement tiles were not easily available, they decided to re-roof the kitchen and toilets with corrugated sheeting, and use the tiles from these buildings to repair the roofs on the main classroom block. Spare tiles from the kitchen and toilets have been stored in a small purpose-built structure, so they are available for future repairs.

Pallol Lower Basic School
Pallol LBS - general view

roof with damaged ceramic tiles
roof with damaged ceramic tiles

water damage inside school
water damage inside school

damaged roof tiles
damaged roof tiles

new corrugated roof on kitchen
new corrugated roof on kitchen

This work was funded with 400 from Pageant after Laura and Head Teacher Musa M Sanneh contacted us to ask for help. Pageant's funding also paid for improvements to the school vegetable garden, and surplus corrugated sheeting was used to repair the fence around the garden. Laura has now returned to the USA, having finished her assignment as a PCV.

Pageant has been really pleased to help this up-country school, and we hope that we can co-operate with the Peace Corps again if similar opportunities arise. For more about how Pageant works with Peace Corps Volunteers and the schools they work in, please have a look at Pageant's Peace Corps Volunteers Page.

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