Simon Rawcliffe was a great supporter of COCO, who sadly passed away in 2013. As a legacy to this great man, Simon’s wife Lisa and son Sam began fundraising for COCO in his memory. This Christmas the ambitious target of £8000 was met! Lisa and Sam are very proud of what they have achieved, and we’re sure that Simon would be too.
Sam ran the Great North Run in Simon’s memory, as did some of their friends, and a group from Eastern Airways ran the Race for Life.
COCO would like to extend a huge thank you to Lisa and Sam, and to their kind family and friends who have helped reach this fantastic total. The donations have been making such a big difference, ensuring children in East Africa receive a good quality education and the best possible start in life. Lisa is now also an invaluable member of the COCO board of trustees, whose advice and dedication help COCO in countless ways.
Dormitories at Hoja Secondary
Donations raised first went towards completing the building of a girls’ dormitory at Hoja Secondary School, meaning the girls no longer have to walk to and from school each day. Some of the girls walked a total of four hours to school and back, so often arrived already tired and not able to focus on their lessons. The journey was often dangerous, especially for girls, who would be tempted to get lifts from strangers. Following this, a boys’ dormitory was also built, giving 50 boys a safe and secure place to sleep at night. The dormitories opened in 2014, initially providing beds for 100 children, this year, more beds were installed with three beds to each bunk, meaning 150 children can benefit from them.
A theory classroom was built at the VTC, so the students studying carpentry and building have a safe place for lessons and to store tools at the end of each day. Before the classroom was built students could not study during the rainy season which is no longer an issue.
Ancet (picture) was a building student at the VTC when the new classroom was being built. He no only benefitted from the constructed classroom, but was also able to gain experience from helping the construction itself! Ancet explains that the VTC students have been waiting a long time for the classroom to be constructed, as currently they have nowhere to store tools, get changed or have their theory lessons. Ancet is very thankful for the construction of the VTC classroom and believes it will help all carpentry and building students.
Sustainable agriculture training
Communities in Tanzania were provided with sustainable agriculture training, which enables parents to increase crop yields using cost-effective and environmentally friendly methods. As part of this, chickens were bought for the communities, which provide extra income through selling eggs and chickens, as well as providing manure to fertilise the crops and increase yields even more! The increased income means that families can afford to send their children to school. On average income increases by 284% as a result of the training.
Classroom at Hoja Secondary
A classroom at Hoja Secondary School was renovated, giving students a safe place to learn. Graduates from Hoja Secondary School have achieved the highest grades of 181 schools in the region for the past four years, and the school has recently been recognised by the government as one of the most children to be able to focus and work effectively – and achieve such amazing results!
In 2016 funds contributed towards our small loans programme, providing loans to four community members allowing them to set up their own business. With the increased income they are then able to provide for their families and send their children to school. When the loans were repaid the money was then reinvested and given out to another aspiring entrepreneur and this will continue to be reinvested for years to come.
Recent fundraising went towards COCO’s Christmas Appeal, to build a nursery school in Kibosho Village near Kilimanjaro. The community received sustainable agriculture training last year and used their increased income to set up a nursery – however it had no permanent building, so was held in a community member’s home and shared toilets with a local bar. More than enough has been raised to build a new toilet block, so work will begin on that this month!
COCO is very proud to have been able to achieve of all of this in Simon’s memory, ensuring the support and kindness he showed COCO continues on. None of this would have been possible without the support and dedication of Simon’s generous family and friends. On behalf of all who have been positively impacted by your support.