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Latest News from Waterloo Schools Charity, Waterloo, Sierra Leone, Africa.

Posted September 2021

Dear Supporter,

So much has happened since our appeal last year.

Thanks to your wonderful response and generosity, we have been able to move forward, as you will see from the latest news below. Thank you for your continued support.

With very best wishes from the Trustees


The Inner Wheel Club of Redditch decided in May this year to fund raise for Waterloo Schools Charity.

With Covid-19 restrictions it has been almost impossible for us to fund raise in the usual way. We were delighted when Helen, International Service Officer of Redditch Inner Wheel, came up with the brilliant idea of a Swimathon – how socially distanced is that?! She undertook to swim 80 lengths for 26 days in August (the equivalent of a Half Marathon – 13 miles). At the time of writing, Helen and the members of Redditch Inner Wheel have raised £ 400 , with donations still coming in. What an achievement!

If you would like to support this initiative and boost the fund total, please email Anne at annerobertson22@hotmail.co.uk and she will provide you with account details.


Helen, swimming for Waterloo Schools

History of the Zoe Carss Nursery School

The capital of Sierra Leone is Freetown, named in the 18th century because it became the new home for resettled slaves from Britain and North America. They spoke many languages - in fact today there are eighteen, with Krio being the lingua franca spoken by 87% of the population. English is the official language but children only learn it when they start primary school at six years of age. It was because of this that Laurie Read planned, designed and built the Zoe Carss Nursery School in 2008. It has two classrooms with a large covered barry (verandah) at either side so that the children can play in a sheltered place in sunshine or rain. The Zoe Carss Education Trust enabled the charity to build this wonderful facility. With the opportunity of attending nursery school, the children now have 3 years of English lessons before starting their primary education. The total enrolment at the nursery is now 150 children.

The extreme climate in Sierra Leone takes its toll, so with the aid of your generous donations the Charity has been busy these last 18 months funding much needed renovations of the nursery buildings and refurbishing nursery school furniture. All this could not have been achieved without the invaluable help and supervision of our two Trustees on the ground, Kenneth Kromanty and Morlai Kamara, as well as Mabel Sawyerr.

Helping them to help themselves


Primary school pupil assisting with refurbishing of new nursery school furniture


Preparing for the new school term at Zoe Carss Nursery

Mission Statement

Founded in 2005, the Waterloo Schools Charity has done a great deal with your help to achieve its stated aim and vision:

To advance the education of children in Waterloo, Sierra Leone, particularly but not exclusively those attending Waterloo Primary School and the Peninsula Secondary School, by the provision of financial assistance, equipment support and such other facilities as the trustees shall from time to time in their absolute discretion determine.

Please help us to help themselves by donating, click here »

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Welcome to Waterloo Schools Charity based in Freetown, Sierra Leone, Africa.

Fifty years ago Laurie Read, founder of the Charity, worked as a teacher in Sierra Leone, Africa before returning to the UK to take up medicine. His love for this little African country never left him. At that time, newly independent Sierra Leone was developing and full of promise for the future.

However, the subsequent years of dictatorship and civil war brought the country to its knees and made it difficult for Laurie to keep in touch. Upon retiring from the NHS in 2005 he and his wife, Sue, made a visit to Sierra Leone to see whether he could work there as a surgeon. It also gave Laurie a chance to visit the Peninsula Secondary School where he had been principal and had taught science so many years earlier. He was horrified by what he found. As a direct result of that visit Waterloo Schools Charity was founded in 2005 and its aim is to co-operate with the people of Waterloo in restoring and developing nursery, primary and secondary school education.

Sadly, Laurie Read passed away in 2014 but his legacy lives on through the efforts of a committed group of trustees, here and in Sierra Leone, and ably led by Sue Read.  Thanks also go to our dedicated and hardworking team of fundraisers and all our donors who give so generously.