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Hart House - Gambian Home For Children With Learning Difficulties

Contact Address:
Gambian Home For Children
With Learning Difficulties

Hart Foundation / Hart House

Website

Sinchu Alhajie Village, Kombo North
West Coast Region
PO Box 2713 Serrekunda
The Gambia, West Africa

Tel no: 9926258
Email: geoffharth102@hotmail.com

Information:
The Gambian Home For Children With Learning Difficulties is run by the Hart Foundation, which is a fully registered NGO charity which was established in 2001 to offer short-term stays for kids with learning problems. Hart House also gives parents and care providers respite from caring for their children and to exchange ideas and progress reports.

The respite home covers the developmental stage of children and helps them attain their highest potential by providing a number of stimulating sets of learning and play activities.

Their intake has over 20 registered children with special needs, aged between 5 to 15, most of whom are resident with a few enrolled on a day-care basis from Mondays to Fridays. However, during the low holiday season the numbers they can accommodate is reduced because of a drop in donations from tourist visitors to The Gambia.

Most of the children's learning problems are as a result of having suffered from cerebral malaria while others are the result of cerebral palsy (CP), epilepsy and speech disorders. Young people with mild to profound mental problems are taken into the Hart House programme for cognitively stimulating classroom activities.

Enrolment & Referrals:
Children are recommended to them from families, the Ministry of Health & Social Welfare, kindergarten & primary school teachers, passers by, other non-governmental organisations in The Gambia and hospital paediatric consultants.

Once someone is referred to the institution the founder, Mr. Geoffrey Hunwicks, makes a trip to the child's residence to talk with his/her family. If all goes well an admissions application form is filled out and a duplicate copy is delivered to the Ministry of Health in Banjul.

Activities:
Arts & crafts.
Daily life skills such as washing & getting dressed
Excursions for learning, fun, etc.
Jigsaw puzzles
Children's DVDs
Matching colours
Music
Outdoor sports
Physiotherapy & speech therapy
Playing with toys & table games
Sandpit activities
Signs & symbols using Makaton
Socially interactive games
Water play
Write Dance

Hart Foundation Structure:
The head of the foundation's executive committee is Geoff Hart along with his spouse the director, cashier, secretary, staff and family representation.

Funding & Help:
Most of the donated items and sponsorship monies comes from visitors to the Gambia between the months of November to April each year. These are for example individual child sponsorship, cash to the Hart Foundation, donations for furniture and toys provided by retailers and private individuals, gifts of education materials etc. They also welcome professional and lay volunteers to help out at the school.

Building:
The property is a purpose built complex on two floors which was finished in the middle of 2002 and measures 14 x 25m.

The first floor is used as the living quarters of the children and has four bedrooms, a dining area, kitchen, four play rooms, a living room, store, bathroom, shower, 2 WCs and equipment storage space.

The top level has the living area for the CEO and his wife, meeting room, four volunteer bedrooms and lounge, a store, a bathroom and WCs.

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