By Dr Cherno Barry
Armitage School Class of 70 initiated a scheme to donate desks and chairs with the names of the donors inscribed there to remind the students who passed through their school. The event was graced by former permanent secretaries, former ministers, former ambassadors, former teachers of Armitage and former students. It took place yesterday at the SaHel Knowledge Campus on the MDI Road.
Speaking at the event Abdoulie Baax Touray, Chairman/ CEO- SaHel Invest Management International (SIMI), himself a former student of Armitage, said: “It is said that you make a living from what you earn, but you make a life from what you give”.
Mr Touray further informed the gathering of the pledge and the initial intention of changing all the beds in the school. “However, we were cautioned to take it easy and resorted to the chair and desk pledge. We hope and pray that with this initiative, Gambians will embrace the spirit of giving back, starting in a modest way by replacing [their] desk and chair at [their] Alma Mater, as it is in their case. The school motto is “Enter to learn, go forth to serve”. He concluded by appealing to all other bodies to emulate the gesture reaffirming.
Ms Amie Kolleh Mbaye, the Chairperson of the Board of Armitage, commended the efforts of the team and reminded them that this team left the school more than half a century ago but has never forgotten their cherished alma mater and is bent on making it one of the best in the country. “This gesture is a clear testimony that Armitage alumni recognise the value of staying connected with the school at every stage, and are inspiring pride and a greater understanding of the school’s mission and impact. The result of this engagement is benefiting every aspect of the school and empowering our students to achieve holistic quality education considering the uniqueness of Armitage as the only Government Boarding school”, she said.
Amie Kolleh thanked the donors and encouraged other alumni to emulate them. She stressed that the goodwill will go a long way in ensuring that Armitage has the needed resources to look to the future, serve the needs of the students, meet today’s local and global challenges and prepare tomorrow’s global citizens.
The Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education was represented by Principal Education Officer Alhagie Jallow, himself an alumnus of Armitage. He commended the wonderful gesture made and encourage all to support Armitage, a significant school and the only public boarding school in the Gambia.