A visit to Jersey from a pupil and teacher from a remote Ugandan school has helped inspire over £24,000 of fundraising. The money was raised in just a few weeks and will be going to the Mifumi Primary School (Jersey) Charity which is supported by Standard Bank.

14 year old Sylivia Adikin and her headmaster, Bernard Onyango from Mifumu Primary school, were invited to Jersey by Standard Bank, in May, to build on the links which have been set up with local schools.

It was Sylivia’s and Bernard’s first trip outside of their home area. During Sylivia’s  visit she met with pupils from JCG, St Michael’s, Grouville, St Martin’s, JCG Prep, Samares and Mont Nicolle schools. Grouville have already established Skype and penpal links with Mifumi, and the other schools can follow. Both were overwhelmed by the differences in the cultures and even a visit to the supermarket was a big event, with Bernard stating that Jersey was like a different planet rather than country.

A gala dinner organised by Standard Bank staff and sponsored by 1st Recruitment raised over £12,000. The dinner saw a charity raffle and auction, plus entertainment provided at no charge by Tony Gardiner. Further money was raised by a golf day organised by Isle of Man staff, and a sponsored bike ride by six year old Riley Tiplady, son of Standard Bank employee Karen Tiplady. Karen and Riley hosted the Mifumi visitors in Jersey and he was so inspired by their story that he wanted to help by cycling further than he’d ever done before.

The fundraising is continuing with Standard Bank employee, Hannah Carolan, undertaking a sponsored skydive on Sunday 7th June. Donations can still be made through the website: www.mifumischool.com

Mifumi school gives hope and a future to over 700 children in a remote community and Standard Bank has been sponsoring the charity since 2013. Matt Gorman, Chief Operating Officer, Standard Bank, Jersey said, ‘It has been a fantastic couple of weeks for us. Hosting our Mifumi visitors and seeing the warm welcome they received around the island realises our hope that this will increase the understanding between our two cultures.’

Mifumi Headmaster Bernard Onyango is delighted with the support. He is planning to use the money raised to build a new classroom block so that the school hall and computer area can be freed up to develop the children’s IT education. He also plans to increase the school’s IT capacity and train more members of staff to manage the Skype links with Jersey schools. It’s hoped a second boarding unit can also be built because many of the children travel for very long distances to attend the school, and are often unable to attend lessons due to other commitments at home. By allowing boarding it ensures they receive a consistent education.