24 April

It’s the end of the financial year and time to start putting together our accounts and annual report to the Charity Commission.

It’s been a great year; one that conveniently ended on Easter Monday with the formal handover of our school in Taninahun.

The opening ceremony, attended by the Paramount Chief VK Magona, senior Government officials, local leaders, parents and children, celebrated a project in which almost every member of the community has played a part.

Led by Steven Mansaray, the PAD(SL) team have project managed and delivered a fantastic building in just 3 months, coordinating community involvement at every stage of the construction from planning to completion. Even the very youngest children were encouraged to play a small part in building their new school.

The opportunity to build this school was only made possible thanks to a very generous capital donation from DART’s sponsor Graham Paton of Linguassist Ltd. Thank you for your trust in DART to deliver the project.

As ever, the UK Arb industry rose to the challege. Our deployment to provide roofing timber for the school and to upskill local volunteers in milling and carpentry techniques was further sponsored by Stein Products LimitedMakita UKArboricultural AssociationChainsawbarsSamurai SawsXactium and supported by many others, not least of all our deployment volunteers and their families.

Finally, our thanks to project partners Rory’s Well for their local knowledge, invaluable support network in the region and advice throughout. It’s been great working with such a like-minded, can-do organisation.

On behalf of everyone involved in the DART school project, we wish the students and staff of Taninahun school every success in the future and, borrowing the motto of a local Cornish school of the same size, ‘a love of life through learning’.

10 April

Steven and his team in Sierra Leone have been busy putting the finishing touches to our collaborative project in Taninahun.

The construction’s looking great, but without children and teachers it’s still only a building.

All that will change in a couple of weeks when the kids and teaching staff return after their Easter holiday and the structure becomes a school.

We hope to bring you news of the opening soon after it happens; an event that will mark the start of a new era for children’s education in Taninahun and surrounding villages.

Rory’s Well
Linguassist Ltd. Stein Products Limited Arboricultural Association Makita UK
Chainsawbars
Xactium

04 March

No heavy machinery; no power tools; just plenty of determination and hard work!

We couldn’t be prouder of what our partners and the community in Taninahun have achieved in a little over two months.

When they set out to complete the project by the end of March the plan was to build the school on a fresh site. Even then, we thought they were being somewhat optimistic in their proposed timescale.

Yet somehow, this amazing community have managed to demolish and clear the old school building, create temporary classrooms nearby, construct a much larger school (resolving challenging foundation problems on the old school site) and still remain ahead of schedule…..and all done by hand!

It may not be too long before we’re posting pictures of the school getting it’s first coat of paint. Linguassist Ltd. Stein Products Limited Makita UK Arboricultural Association Chainsawbars Rory’s Well

28 February

Delighted to report that the DART/Rory’s Well School Project funded by Linguassist Ltd.is still firmly on track with completion of Stage 2 taking place earlier this month.

The roof and ceilings have now been completed, using locally milled timber and rendering of internal classroom walls is already well underway.

The training and equipment provided by our team with the support of Stein Products LimitedMakita UKArboricultural Association and Chainsawbars has clearly been put to good use.

07 Febrary

A big thank you to all our supporters and sponsors for making this deployment possible, especially Ian and Nigel Fletcher at Stein Products LimitedMakita UK and the team at the Arboricultural Association.

Thank you also to new friends at Chainsawbars for your generous donation of an Eco Mill, spares and milling chains and our old friends at Samurai Saws for your ongoing support.

And, as always, thanks to our volunteers and their families for giving so generously of their time, energy and professional knowledge to keep the DART project moving forward. Who would have predicted 5 years ago that we would build a school in West Africa?

We will try to keep you updated on the progress of that school over the next couple of months.

5 February

The village have agreed to harvest specific trees to provide structural roofing timber and classroom furniture for the new school.

This tree is known locally as a ‘Lebanese tree’ and highly valued for its structural strength and natural resistance to rot and pests. There’s a significant settled Lebanese population in Sierra Leone and our translator explained that his people equate the rich red colour of the wood to the characteristic Lebanese skin colour.

We think it might be more widely known as a West African Sapele? It’s certainly a very strong and heavy hardwood timber. Our aim is to mill the maximum number of 14′ structural lengths of timber from this magnificent tree and make best use of whatever remains to manufacture community bee hives and classroom furniture.

Our partner's Rory's Well support a number of innovative farming programmes in the region, including a very successful bee-keeping project led by another great UK charity Bees Abroad – relieving poverty through beekeeping.And Pujehun is a great place to make honey; not just any old honey, but top quality, prize winning honey! With the help of plans downloaded from the Bees Abroad website and advice from local bee keepers Junica and Vamba, we used scrap lengths of timber left over from the milling process to manufacture a number of community hives. We hope the tools donated to the project will produce many more bee hives in the future.

Posted by DART International UK on Wednesday, 6 February 2019

04 February

Eight trainees – Some with experience, some with none. So it’s back to basics for everyone…..

03 February

Proof that we were not the most overloaded 4 x 4 in Sierra Leone.

03 February

Images of the trip out to Sierra Leone and the welcome in the village. Tomorrow we start the training programme.

Images of the trip out to Sierra Leone and the welcome in the village. Tomorrow we start the training programme.

Posted by DART International UK on Sunday, 3 February 2019

We received a message this morning that the team have arrived safe and well in Bo, Sierra Leone and are now picking up…

Posted by DART International UK on Thursday, 17 January 2019

6 January

Final preparations are underway for next week’s deployment to Sierra Leone. The village is off-grid with a very intermittent mobile signal, so we plan to tell you all about it on our return home at the end of the month.

In the meantime, the school building is on track for completion of Stage 1 and, on behalf of the community of Taninahun, we’d like to thank Graham at Linguassist Ltd. for financing this exciting project; one that will improve the education of generations of children in the village and surrounding area.

Our thanks also to DART’s sponsors Stein Products LimitedMakita UK and the Arboricultural Association for their invaluable support to this deployment and the work of our charity.

25 December

Latest update from Sierra Leone: Old school demolished, ground cleared and foundation blocks laid.

Wishing all our volunteers, partners and supporters a very happy and peaceful Christmas.

18 December

Our partner’s in Sierra Leone are not hanging around! Temporary thatched classrooms have been established, demolition of the dangerous school building is well underway and concrete blocks are being manufactured, using river sand and gravel collected locally by the village. Building schools doesn’t get a lot more sustainable than this.

15 December

In 2015 DART deployed a training team to Sierra Leone to work alongside fellow UK charity Rory’s Well to deliver arboricultural training and equipment to a remote, rural community in the south of the country. The DART training programme was well received by the community, who have used those arborist skills and the equipment generously donated by our sponsor Stein Products Limited to support a number of innovative and sustainable farming initiatives; projects that are significantly improving food security and general health of village communities across the region.

Earlier this year, one of DART’s sponsors – Mr Graham Paton of Linguassist Ltd. – on hearing that the school in the village of Taninahun in which our team had worked was on the point of collapse, indicated that he would like to finance the building of a new school and asked us to manage the project. Working once again with our friends in Rory’s Well and the Sierra Leone NGO PAD(SL) as our educational advisory body and local project management team, DART’s trustees have agreed a project proposal to demolish the old building and replace it with a larger (and much safer!) 4 classroom school scheduled to open in March 2019

As part of the project, DART have committed to deploy another training team in January, exactly 4 years after our first visit, to deliver advanced chainsaw milling training and equipment to members of the local farmer’s cooperative; skills that will enable community carpenters to produce cost-effective timber framing for the roof structure, along with much needed classroom furniture. As with every other DART deployment, this one wouldn’t be possible without the invaluable support of our main sponsors Ian and Nigel Fletcher at Stein Products Limited, equipment support from Makita UK, financial donations from the Arboricultural Association and support from hundreds of individuals across the Arb industry. Thank you all.

Watch this space for further updates and if you’d like to donate personally, please look for us on Justgiving:

In 2015 DART deployed a training team to Sierra Leone to work alongside fellow UK charity Rory's Well to deliver arboricultural training and equipment to a remote, rural community in the south of the country. The DART training programme was well received by the community, who have used those arborist skills and the equipment generously donated by our sponsor Stein Products Limited to support a number of innovative and sustainable farming initiatives; projects that are significantly improving food security and general health of village communities across the region.Earlier this year, one of DART's sponsors – Mr Graham Paton of Linguassist Ltd. – on hearing that the school in the village of Taninahun in which our team had worked was on the point of collapse, indicated that he would like to finance the building of a new school and asked us to manage the project. Working once again with our friends in Rory's Well and the Sierra Leone NGO PAD(SL) as our educational advisory body and local project management team, DART's trustees have agreed a project proposal to demolish the old building and replace it with a larger (and much safer!) 4 classroom school scheduled to open in March 2019As part of the project, DART have committed to deploy another training team in January, exactly 4 years after our first visit, to deliver advanced chainsaw milling training and equipment to members of the local farmer's cooperative; skills that will enable community carpenters to produce cost-effective timber framing for the roof structure, along with much needed classroom furniture. As with every other DART deployment, this one wouldn't be possible without the invaluable support of our main sponsors Ian and Nigel Fletcher at Stein Products Limited, equipment support from Makita UK, financial donations from the Arboricultural Association and support from hundreds of individuals across the Arb industry. Thank you all. Watch this space for further updates and if you'd like to donate personally, please look for us on Justgiving: https://www.justgiving.com/dartinternationaluk

Posted by DART International UK on Saturday, 15 December 2018

https://www.justgiving.com/dartinternationaluk

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