Thames Christian College, based in Battersea, is delighted to have won the Independent Schools Association Award (ISA) for Outstanding Contribution for International Understanding in acknowledgement of the pupils’ trip to Tanzania in 2014 to work for the charity, Go Make a Difference. A small secondary school of 120 pupils, Thames has additionally raised almost £25,000 for this charity which works alongside the Anglican Diocese of Mara. Go MAD’s aim is to help local smallholder farmers, villagers and people living with HIV and AIDS and to encourage small scale, sustainable economic schemes.
The school took a team of 14 Year 10 and 11 pupils on a life changing two week trip to Musoma, Tanzania, on the shore of Lake Victoria. In the action packed fortnight the pupils, who had each raised the funds for their own trip, saw how shortage of clean water affects the daily lives and health of villagers. They worked alongside local villagers helping to build two water tanks and build a goat shed. They had the opportunity to help take sick villagers to hospital, visit local primary and secondary schools, a market garden project and an orphanage. They visited the health clinic being built with money they had themselves raised. Funds raised have also provided clean water for a village primary school and supported girls’ education projects to help break the cycle of early marriage and multiple pregnancies.
Stephen Holsgrove, Head Teacher, Thames Christian College, comments: “We are very touched to receive the ISA Outstanding Contribution for International Understanding Award. It means a lot to us and even more to the amazing charity we support, Go Make a Difference. The grassroots nature of this trip where our pupils work alongside villagers in one of the poorest areas of Tanzania really enables them to gain a greater understanding of the challenges of life in a developing world country. It is one of the best educational initiatives we have ever undertaken and each one of us would jump at the chance to go back. Pupils return from the trip changed: more mature and more determined to make the most of their education.” “The 2015 ISA Awards once more demonstrated that our schools are at the forefront of innovation and excellence in independent education. If anything, the standard of entry was even higher than last year, and we are extremely proud of the achievement of our finalists.” Neil Roskilly, Chief Executive Officer at ISA. http://www.isaschools.org.uk/2015/11/25/isa-awards-2015/