This week’s travel snap is also my entry for Round 46 of Travel Photo Roulette
with the theme of ‘Smile’.

If you’d like to enter you’ll find all the details and all the entries on the website 2Away
who are the hosts for this round.

I took this photo while visiting a school in The Gambia.
We were there making a short film about tourism helping local people.

Here’s a link to the film called ‘Nyodema’ which means ‘helping each other’ in Mandinka (and it’s also the name of community group that I’m involved with that helps schools in The Gambia). In this film you’ll see the school where this photo was taken as well as an interview with your’s truly which they sprung on me out of the blue!


  1. Gorgeous – she made me smile!

  2. Very nice Kat! Hopefully my photographs are at least half as good as yours.. but I think I will be focussing my energies on videos :-) Keep up the good work!

  3. What a precious shot :-)

  4. Wonderful smile caught here…. 😉

  5. Such a great smile! I love the idea of partnering schools and cultural exchange.How involved are the Gambian parents? Are the children attending school some of the first in the family to receive an education? I’m guessing they pass on what they learn whenever they can. The children that can’t afford school, how do they fill their days? Does the government have any future plans to make education available to everyone?

    Sorry for all the questions. Education has always been a big deal in my family My parent’s generation didn’t have an easy time of it, but because of education they all were able to improve their situation, hence making our lives better. It makes me sad to know that so many children don’t have that opportunity.

    • Questions are great!
      The Gambian parents aren’t involved that much as fas as I can gather but I’m sure this varies.
      When I was involved with a cultural exchange at a school a few parents came along and joined in but not many. Here’s a link to my blog about the week, I had a wicked time! A week of Song in The Gambia
      I sponsor a little girl called Lisa and her parents didn’t go to school so they can’t speak English even though their children can. English is the official language of The Gambia but at home everyone speaks one of a number of local languages.
      Not sure I can answer your question about the children who don’t go to school… playing, getting up to mischief or helping around the house I guess! plus a bit of begging from tourists if they live in the tourist area (which is quite small).
      Education in The Gambia from the age of 7 is free in that there are schools that don’t charge fees. These are run by the government and they pay the teachers but the community has to provide and maintain the school building which is very hard for them. Parents have to buy uniforms, books and pencils etc and not everyone can afford this. I think this is what Gambians mean when they say education is not free.
      For under 7s all schools are currently private and therefore fee paying unless they are run by a charity. The government is currently bringing in changes so that these schools will be free too.
      Does that cover everything? If not please ask anything you like and I’ll do my best to answer.

      • Thanks for explaining! Your answers are great. I see what you mean by not free. Those expenses can definitely add up, like uniforms that have to be continuously replaced as the child grows.

      • I may do – just struggling to put my ‘capture the colour together’ at the mo :)

        • It’s hard to make a decision sometimes, I know!
          Only two days left to enter round 46 but there’s always the next one.


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