GGS Charitable Initiative to Tanzania

Congratulations to eleven members of Grosvenor’s Year Thirteen who have spent the past three months embarking on a rigorous series of fundraising initiatives in order to facilitate the opportunity of a lifetime, as they prepare to jet off on a two week charitable initiative to Tanzania at the end of June.

The pupils – Daniel Armstrong, Ben Gilmore, Sophie Larmour, James Lusty, Rachel McConkey, Katie McCullough, Peter McCreery, Rhys Johnston, Garret Robinson, Tom Rooney and Abbi Stanex, will depart from Belfast City Airport on Saturday 30th June on a highly anticipated trip, the purpose of which is to support a number of existing projects set up and run by the charity organisation ‘Go Mad’ (Go Make a Difference), relating to a range of issues - from providing clean water, housing, health care, health education and general education through to growing maize, running a carpentry workshop, making re-usable sanitary towels and much more. 

‘Go Mad’ was established in 2008 by retired former Grosvenor pupil Graham McClure, 64, who attended the School from 1965 – 1972 but now lives with his wife Irene - originally from Carrickfergus - in Oxfordshire, having run a Design and Build business in London for twenty five years. The aim of the organisation is to give people from the developed world the opportunity to join teams that help some of the world’s poorest people to help themselves. It runs long-term projects that are entirely funded by volunteers, with 95% of the money raised going into its projects and the remaining 5% being invested into repairs for the Landrovers that are used for transport.

Grosvenor’s participating pupils will be joined throughout their trip by Graham himself, as well as Claire Anderson, Go Mad’s Country Director for Tanzania. Within their thirteen day itinerary, during which time they will be primarily based in the city of Musoma, the pupils will spend the first day meeting locals and deciding which of Go Mad’s many projects to support before spending the majority of the trip helping with the implementation of their chosen scheme(s). In addition, they will have some time off to attend an African Church service, explore the local area and watch the sun go down over Lake Victoria before, finally, spending their final two days participating in a sensational Safari experience through the magnificent Serengeti.

In order to turn their dream of ‘Making a Difference’ in Tanzania into a reality, all eleven participating GGS pupils have embarked on a relentless programme of fundraising over recent months, which has included Camel Racing at Malone Rugby Club in April, Bagpacking at Newtownards Tesco in May and an abseil down the Europa Hotel in June, contributing to an overall pot of £22,000 which they, along with their peers from the other participating schools, will decide how best to invest once they have witnessed, at first hand, each of the projects which ‘Go Mad’ has already begun implementing in Tanzania.

The pupils’ forthcoming trip promises to be an enlightening, rewarding and life-changing experience, during which time they will learn many valuable skills and share a plethora of memorable experiences whilst, most importantly, making a difference to those who will benefit from their efforts for years to come. Students who have participated in previous trips with ‘Go Mad’ have been deeply touched and influenced by what they have witnessed and have come back with a fuller understanding of the issues facing the majority of the world who live on $10 a day or less.

All at Grosvenor wish its eleven intrepid travellers the best of luck throughout their stay in Tanzania and we look forward of hearing more about their adventures when the new academic year commences in September. 

Some of Grosvenor's Year Thirteen pupils, pictured alongside Dr. Vasey, who will be setting off for Tanzania to 'Go Make a Differecne' at the end of June. 

Grosvenor pupils (from left to right): Katie McCullough, Abbi Stanex, Peter McCreery, Tom Rooney, Garrett Robinson and Rachel McConkey following a recent fundraising abseil down the side of the Europa Hotel.