Friday November 21st – Malindi/Mombasa

Brilliance High School in Malindi received 15 computers from Camara and the Lindsey Africa Project in May 2008. In July, a subsequent check on the school found that the computers could not be located (we were told they were in the Director’s home until some renovation work in the school was completed). With little optimism I called on the school and asked to see the computers but was sent by the Director to another location – needless to say they were not there either. We have filed a police report but are not confident of recovering them. I don’t believe corruption is unique to Africa but it is something we have to plan for and proper monitoring & evaluation is an essential part of that plan (Welcome on board to Ciaran Casey our new M&E expert who started work on Monday – this job should be a piece of cake for him!).

On a more positive note I also visited the Malindi Education & Development Association a local Community Based Organisation (CBO) that among other things works with street gangs in the area. They identify leaders within the gangs and turn their lives around by training and mentoring. They then send these people back into the community as organisers and mentors for other local youth.
The CEO of MEDA Mr Attas Ali has a formidable reputation for integrity, competence and ‘getting things done’, and on meeting him I can confirm that reputation is well warranted. We have asked to partner with MEDA to set up a small maintenance workshop in one of their education facilities. This will allow Camara to provide better maintenance support to the local schools as well as giving young people from MEDA the chance to learn important ICT Technician skills with which they can improve their livelihoods. To me the success of Camara is all about the quality of people who work for and with us and if we continue to work with people like Attas Ali I have no doubt we will achieve our ‘1000 Schools’ objectives.