Conor off to Kenya to build modern schools

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Young Claudy man, Conor Ward, will travel to Kenya next month for the third year running to help build schools in some of the East African country’s poorest districts.

Conor jets off to Nairobi on September 16 before travelling to the west of the country to spend two weeks building and fitting out classrooms.

The ex-St. Columb’s College student will be joined by his father and sister as part of two missions organised by the Swatragh-based Granaghan Outreach Charitable Trust.

Prior to heading off Conor encouraged more young people from Derry City and north Co. Derry to get involved.

“There are 32 volunteers from all over County Derry, including Claudy and Craigbane, mostly students,” said Conor.

“We go out and work alongside the villagers who are all tradesmen. We dig out the footings, do the manual labouring. We build the schools up, paint the classrooms, put in blackboards, paint the desks, and so on,” he explained.

Conor first travelled to East Africa visiting Tigithi facing Mount Kenya in 2016.

The 19-year-old returned to Gatwe in the same region last year but will be working in an entirely different province next month, and with good reason, as he explained.

“This year we are travelling to western Kenya, which was really badly hit by the drought and famine last year,” he said.

Despite the Granaghan charity being based on the far side of the Glenshane more and more volunteers from this side of the mountain have been getting involved.

“Last year a fellah from Tamnaherin was out and we had four volunteers from Craigbane. There’s four from Craigbane parish going out again this year and I’’m getting contacted by a lot of ones from the town that I would have went to ‘the College’ with and they are all looking to get involved next year too. So it’s sort of making its way more towards the city.”

If you are interested in volunteering or donating visit www.granaghanoutreach.com