How To Show You Care………

Posted on April 15, 2012 by Joanna Baker under gambia news

Gambians are known for their friendliness, so its easy to see why people call it “ The Smiling Coast”, Gambians have a happy outlook on life even though a lot of them are living in poverty, and you wont help but fall in love with the country and its people.

Many of the excursions you will take in, will take you through ravished villages, you will see some very moving sights, however we guarantee, most will be making the best of their situation and try to make a life for themselves regardless. Now there is much that we can do, without it having to cost us a fortune, and this is where we can help……Recycling your bits and pieces, have you heard the saying, “your rubbish is someone else’s treasure”?? Well this very much applies to the Gambians, they have uses for al sorts of stuff we would usually throw away. And its so easy for you to help, all just by making a little room in your suit case and taking some of these very basic things with you.

Gambian children, fruit sellers and the usual householder can make very good use of your take away cartons, something i’m sure you throw away at least once a week. In Gambia, the children don’t get school meals like ours do, they love the take away cartons to use as lunch boxes, or maybe householders can use them as food storage, keeps the flies out and keep food fresher for longer, money saving all round, and lets face it, they don’t weigh much or take up much room.

Many of the hoteliers provide “freebies” in your rooms, stuff like shower gel, shampoo, soap and sewing kids. This kind of stuff is very expensive for Gambians to buy locally and it is a complete luxury to them, maybe you can save these up too, and rather than carrying back half empty bottles of toiletries, you can bag them up and give to the locals, they will be eternally grateful and again it doesn’t need to cost you a fortune either.

Gambians don’t have an Ikea or a Barker and Stonehouse, they generally live in pretty poor standards of accommodation and really struggle with storage, old suitcases, holdalls, flat pack boxes are always treasured. In fact, one family left behind an old hard cased suitcase one year, one family begged for it and created a make shift cot for their new born baby, it shames me to think have we take things for granted and how lucky we really are.

Other things that can help improve their lifestyle are old mobile phones, free sim cards, pens, books, calculators, paper and first aid kits, and these are all small, easily carried things that we take for granted and with a little thought, you can really make a difference and help these wonderful people. Even if you only take one thing with you, you are making their already beautiful smiles, even bigger…..go on, pack a few bits and make a difference.


About Joanna Baker

23 years and counting which included 2 years YTS with Team Travel, 3 years in Crete as a rep for LTS/Sunworld. 11 years in Lincoln/TUI (6 years self-employed)

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