COCO provides sustainable sources of quality education to children living in poor and marginalised communities. We currently work in Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda. - See more here.
Many young people have insufficient skills relevant to helping them to find employment. This not only results in high unemployment for young people, but also means that the economy cannot grow as fast without the talent of young people.
Schools for life promotes group debate and participation, as well as training in vocational skills, nurturing curiosity, equality and an entrepreneurial spirit; helping children to reach their full potential; and giving them the best possible preparation for the future. Income Generation Programmes and business management training for parents and carers of children also help to ensure project sustainability.
Please fill in the application form which can be found here.
Yes we do, feel free to browse the gallery here.
You can reach us on 0191 261 7427 or email us at [email protected]. If you would like to email regarding fundraising, events and marketing email [email protected] For enquiries related to COCO's Projects and Operations email [email protected] For enquiries related to office management and finance email [email protected] and for anything else email COCO’s CEO Lucy at [email protected].
We provide help to organisations in Tanzania, Kenya, and Uganda.
Many people in the UK are in great need, which COCO recognises. Many COCO staff members, supporters and trustees also choose to support causes in the UK as well as COCO’s work overseas.
COCO chooses to work overseas as we believe in global equality and that all children should have an equal opportunity to be educated so that they can make informed choices and develop skills for a bright future.
We’re living in an increasingly small world, and it is becoming increasingly difficult to separate issues overseas from those experienced in the UK. The ongoing refugee crisis demonstrates that the impact of poverty and conflict in one area can spread across the globe.
Yes and no. If you’re thinking of volunteering by painting and helping to build classrooms then COCO doesn’t offer placements of this nature. We employ local contractors to do this work and voluntary placements would restrict the opportunity for these contractors to generate income.
We do offer limited placements for individuals with key skills; generally to experienced teachers or researchers. For example, we welcome qualified teachers who are keen to pass on innovative teaching methods to the teachers employed in our Schools for Life.
COCO doesn’t offer child sponsorship programmes for several reasons; they are unsustainable, expensive to administer and can often cause more harm than good.
Sponsoring a child for, say, three years achieves very little unless you sponsor the child for a fourth year. There is no end in sight and the process promotes dependence, which COCO tries to discourage. Sending correspondence between students is expensive and time consuming, and can sometimes alienate children from their families and communities.
Instead, COCO’s programmes seek to help communities to help themselves and place a great emphasis on sustainability.
You can read about COCO’s values here.
COCO began focusing on education as it was initially founded in response to the devastating conflict in Bosnia. One of COCO's co-founders, Jim Panton, was serving in the British military in Bosnia and witnessed local communities struggling to rebuild their lives first hand. It was decided that investment in education was essential to ensuring that such a situation would not arise again.
As COCO grew as an organisation, the focus increasingly became on poverty alleviation in stable countries. In such an environment it was also decided that education was particularly important. Nelson Mandela famously said 'education is the strongest weapon you can use to change the world'. By educating children in East Africa, we are hoping to empower people to lift themselves, their families and their communities out of poverty.
No. As an organisation we stand strongly against practices which pressure people into donating. One of our wonderful volunteers summed up our attitude to fundraising better than we could ever hope to; "COCO has mastered the most incredible approach to work; it inspires people to give instead of forcing them."
COCO is a Scottish registered charity (SC030428), so we are registered with OSCR rather than the charity commission. You can find us here.
From our point of view, the best way to make a donation or payment is through a direct transfer into our account. It's quick, cheap and transparent! Please contact us for our account details.
You can also pay through our website using our donate now button. Please note that COCO may be charged a small fee for transactions through these platforms, or for bank transfers of foreign currency.