Hope Tree

During our party to celebrate Independent Thinking’s 20 years in 2013, I promised that I would do what I could to send those Associates willing to ‘dangerous places for no money’.

In a world where millions of children don’t go to school and millions who do learn nothing anyway’[1] I felt that the combined talents, experience and wisdom of a team of educators such as the associates of Independent Thinking was a resource that could make a genuine difference. A small one, but a difference all the same.

Since then we have sent Associates on several occasions to work with teachers and school leaders in an educational charity in Chile who serve children from some of the poorest communities and who fall through the net of the current money-driven education system there. We have sent an Associate to Ghana to lead teacher training across two schools far from any big city and sent a container full of much-needed school supplies at the same time. And we have teamed up with a fledgling educational charity, World Wide Education Project, to send three Associates to one of the world’s largest refugee camps, Kakuma in Kenya, to help with the almost impossible task of teaching thousands of refugee children in the most dire of surroundings.

Why do we do this? Because we can. So, why wouldn’t we?

If you can do something then you do something.

There is a model forced upon education that the only way to function is through competition, by being better than your neighbour, and that teachers work best when you dangle enough money in front of them. To think that is to not understand the nature of the profession. In the Global Education Village, of which we are all a part if you step back and look, we improve things by collaborating and helping.

And if you can help teachers like Nancy, you help.


Why wouldn’t you?

There will be other things we do as there so much to do, but at the moment we want you to help us by raising money to build a new classroom in Kakuma. With over 7000 children, 40 teachers and just 12 classrooms currently it is an instant quick win. We just need £5000 to make it happen and we’re halfway there. A pound or so from enough people like you will get Nancy that school.

You can donate via WWEP’s Just Giving sight here or by texting WWEP01 £3 to 70070.

There will be other ways you can help us help in the future but at the moment, as Debra, Jane, Bethan and Simon wash the dust out of the hair and reflect on one of the most challenging weeks of their lives, this is the help we need.

Thank you.

Ian Gilbert


Independent Thinking