Africa's Children in Education

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My Charity of the Year

My Charity of the Year
by Nick Posford

image Nick is a professional fundraiser who we met earlier in 2014. He wrote about the work we do and kindly agreed to let us have an edited version for this website. You can read his original blog post on his website. nickposford.uk

“Writing this post excites me more than anything I’ve written this year.

I feel like I almost had a secret for the past few months. It started when I went to the annual Citizens Advice conference and I met an amazing lady, Sue Hayes, the co-founder of this charity. We were chatting when she told me the Charity Commission had just registered Africa’s Children in Education. My interest was sparked immediately because she mentioned Kilimanjaro. As a fundraiser, Kilimanjaro is synonymous for me with intrepid supporters trekking for days up a mountain and raising thousands of pounds. I have never been, and I had never really thought about the place itself or the situation in which these fundraising treks take place. I should have.

When Sue explained more about what the charity does, I was hooked. Here was someone who had never intended to become the founder of a charity but along with her husband Ron, they had seen an urgent need and they couldn’t ignore it. This website shows the hard work already done as well as how much there is still to do, and also shows how much effort they have put into it and also their passion for education as a way out of poverty.

We spoke and I loved how Sue described the children she had helped over the years, one of whom had come over to the UK to visit when she had reached school leaving age. This charity has clearly been a labour of love for Sue and Ron for many years, and it is brilliant they have recently got the official stamp of approval from the Charity Commission. Being a techie geek, when Sue explained about the charity, I was mad keen to visit their Facebook page, Twitter feed and website. They didn’t have them. I said to Sue that they really must get a website up and running, and in December 2014, this site went live.

For me, this charity shows the positive and joyful side of Africa. Sure, newsletters and fundraising appeals make clear the desperate circumstances of some of the children (otherwise there wouldn’t be the need for a charity), but the focus is optimistic and forward-looking. Just look at the photos and tell me you don’t want to be part of this!

For me, this is a charity that belongs to the people it helps, it is a charity that is not patronising those it helps but letting them lead the way. It is a charity that is doing something really sustainable and long term, in difficult circumstances. As a fundraiser in my day job, I love that this is a charity where the link between donor and beneficiary is made clear, where you can really see how your support helps, and what a massive difference a small regular gift can make.

My charity of the year is Africa’s Children in Education and I think it really is ACE! Have a look at the work being done to change lives for good. And look at the impact you can have with incredibly small donations. I would urge everyone with a small amount to spare to consider donating to the Buy a Breakfast Appeal.

I hope Africa’s Children in Education inspire you as much as they inspired me this year!”