2018 AGM Proceedings – summary

We held our 2018 AGM and Reunion lunch in the crypt of St. Mary’s Church, Islington.  23 people attended.  The Hon Chair gave his report; the Hon Treasurer took us through the figures, highlighting particularly the legacies we have received; the Hon Secretary summarised our activities since the last AGM, which have been manifold and, as far as we can see, very successful.  As a way of stemming the flow of applications for grants, attendees expressed support for the idea of having two “windows” of about 6 weeks annually for grant applications.  Also mentioned were our policies about child protection, data protection, and the fact that we have blocked advertising from appearing on our website.  The committee was reelected nem con and we are pleased that Rita de Graft and Beatrice Monney will be co-opted on to the committee.  We had an excellent lunch provided by Carluccios, and time to view the exhibition of photos and texts of school projects completed this year.  In the afternoon, we first of all held the annual raffle, with very many of us winning prizes.  Then we were delighted to hear Ms Afua Gaisie, the new Head and her Deputy, Ms Grace Boakye-Dankwah, of the Education Section of the Ghana High Commission, who talked to us about their work and promised to support GSA in any way they can.  Jo Hallett updated us on the Let’s Read project.  Jane Scott, dressed in a beautiful Ghanaian two-piece dress made by apprentices at Wulugu, gave an encouraging report on that project;  Patrick Heinecke reported on the Sandema project, mentioning their use of solar power (wonderful) but battery maintenance is a problem. Rita de Graft and Mary Owusu talked about the new library at Hia, with most books now catalogued and being used by several schools, Penny Sewell reported that the Joe Bedu school at Daffor-Awudome goes from strength to strength,  We discussed reasons why we are getting so many applications for basic equipment.  Many factors are involved, among them the government’s feeding programme and the fact that secondary schooling is free.  Both policies have driven up numbers of enrolled pupils, putting huge pressure on schools to accommodate more pupils without the extra resources needed from central government.  We ended with tea and biscuits and hope that more supporters will be able to come next year.