Launch Day: Bumpeh Academy Development Project

No more T-Minuses.  Or bulletins.

And no need for embellishment or over-statement; if you’re interested in helping with, or even knowing more about an under-supported school in western Sierra Leone, please check out BumpehAcademyDP.org.

This has not been an easy task for any of us involved with the project so far, but it has already been so rewarding, eye-opening, and a tremendous learning experience for all involved.  And it will continue to be. The job isn’t finished, it’s really just begun. Fundraising won’t be easy (it definitely won’t be fast), and like all breaking news, launch day will fade into the past in the not-too-distant future.

Our job will be to keep people engaged.  Keep the project relatable, make the process interesting, make the successes tangible.

It’s been a fun intersection of people, passion, purpose, and project.

For me; many hours and days spent in coffee shops all over Asia collecting information, dissecting ideas, building goals, prioritizing, dismissing, brainstorming and organizing thoughts into a singular, concrete idea.

For Daniel Koroma and David Rashid Conteh; countless trips back and forth between Freetown and Rotifunk, tireless work collecting and sharing information, creating ideas locally, implementing ideas from abroad, and always fighting the uphill battle for internet connection.

If you take a look at the website you’ll get to know David and Daniel a little bit more, they are after all the local stalwarts behind everything that’s progressed.   I wish I had a photo of them both together.
dan and dan

I don’t. So instead, here’s a photo I’ve used several times before, but love just the same.  Daniel is on the left, and senior teacher Dan Sesay on the right.  I took this photo the day they first showed me the school.

The passion was undeniable from that first day, that first moment.  Daniel couldn’t wait to show me everything.

What impressed me, what really sucked me in, was that he never once apologized for the state of the school.  Yea, it was half finished. Sure, the windows were just temporary cinder blocks with circular holes. And that classroom behind him in the photo is just collapsed bamboo sticks.

But Daniel gave me a tour of the school by way of mental picture, showing me where everything was going to be, a school garden, a staff room, new classrooms, everything that was to be Bumpeh Academy.

I bought into the idea at that very moment.  Today is really no different except I get to stand on Daniel’s side and share that mental picture with all of you.

So if you have five-ten minutes, take a look at the website. I’d suggest heading to “Meet the Students,” to see who it is we’re really helping…  When I first read some of the student profiles that Daniel and David shared- none of which I even had the chance to meet- I was stunned.  I hope you’ll be as well.

So go ahead, take a look! BumpehAcademyDP.org

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