Background
Sierra Leone is located on the West Coast of Africa and is one of the poorest countries in the world. The country endured an 11 year civil war (1991-2002) which destroyed much of the infrastructure and had a very negative impact on the child population. Generations of school teachers and school children were either killed or displaced or quite simply not able to attend school because of the war. Many children grew up without schooling and there is an educational gap left as a result of the war. The road to recovery will be slow and we believe that we have the responsibility to do our bit to ensure that things improve as quickly as they can for the generations which are growing in a stable but very poor environment.

Toyota Gibraltar Stockholding trip
Toyota Gibraltar Stockholdings (www.toyota-gib.com) is a Gibraltar based company which supplies vehicles to the aid and humanitarian sector. The vehicles are mainly used in Africa by United Nations agencies and international NGO working in relief operations and development projects. In early 2006, Jimmy Bruzon (Founding Trustee) was part of group of employees which travelled to Sierra Leone to take part in a 4×4 course that was given to international agencies working there. The base camp for the course was located in Regent Village and Jimmy came into contact with the Regent Primary school, the oldest Primary school in Sierra Leone and one of the first in West Africa established in 1812 by the Christian Missionary Society, it was the start of a journey that would eventually develop into our charity “Action4schools-Sierra Leone”.

From 2007 to 2010 Jimmy Bruzon and some supporters sent school items to Regent Primary school, books, pens, pencils, crayons and other useful stationery were sent inside the vehicles whenever vehicles were supplied to Sierra Leone. In 2010 Jimmy Bruzon linked up with Gibraltar based charity Association for Kids In Need (http://www.akincharity.org/) and began fundraising in order to refurbish Regent Primary school, the school roof needed to be repaired because it was leaking whenever it rained. In September 2010 the school roof was refurbished successfully and AKIN Sierra Leone projects was established. More information and photos on Regent school project here:  http://www.action4schools.gi/regent-primary-school-regent-village/

Between 2010 and 2013 the AKIN Sierra Leone project quickly grew in terms of number of supporters and in terms of funds raised and Jimmy Bruzon continued to seek support from individual and corporate sponsors in order to refurbish more needy schools.

Please visit our Project page where you can view all the school projects undertaken so far : http://www.action4schools.gi/category/projects/

2013 – Action4schools-Sierra Leone
In early 2013 Jimmy together with key supporters John Gill, Lloyd Devincenzi, Nadine Pardo-Zammit and Paul Costa decided that the best way to achieve the aims of supporting schools in Sierra Leone was by registering a new charity with two clear aims and with one important principle, that “action turns hope into reality“.

OUR AIMS-
In Sierra Leone:
To provide a better environment in schools and improve education. The schools we support will be provided with a solid building, a clean source of water (water well or connection to the local water supplier), good quality furniture, good lighting and ventilation, books, stationery and sports equipment, a power generator, electrical fittings and very importantly latrines and adequate sanitation facilities. Wherever possible the teachers in the schools that we support will be encouraged to attend teacher training coures and to sit relevant examinations which will lead to an enhancement of their skills and knowledge which will in turn improve the level of education.

In Gibraltar:
To raise awareness amongst the student population of Gibraltar, a place that is blessed with a high standard of living. By raising awareness amongst students in Gibraltar we aim to improve the way our younger generations think so that they understand that not everyone in the world has the same high standard of living. We promote the idea that positive action brings about positive change to others less fortunate. We seek not just to open eyes but to get those open eyes to do something about what they see, we believe it is our duty to help the less fortunate in whatever way we can through action and encourage students participation in fundraising activities. We will seek “students4students” action.

Founding Trustees
Three of our five founding trustees have visited Sierra Leone, John Gill (Treasurer) visited Sierra Leone in 2004 with a group of employees from Toyota Gibraltar Stockholdings. Jimmy Bruzon (Chairman) visited together with employees in 2006 and then returned in 2012 to visit school projects and to participate together with Lloyd Devincenzi (Secretary) in the first ever Sierra Leone Marathon (http://www.sierraleonemarathon.com/) which was organised by UK charity and partner Street Child (http://www.street-child.co.uk/)

“We will continue to support needy children and communities in Sierra Leone for as long as possible.”