Aquinoe Learning Centre

The News

From Kakuma to international star

The link below is to a football story!

It shows (in a small way) what conditions are like in Kakuma refugee camp in Northern Kenya.

Kakuma camp is where several of the South Sudanese pupils at Aquinoe go “home” for the holidays.

We are fortunate that several supporters sponsor children from the camp but we are always trying to help more of the thousands of children in the camp.


Class Eight pupils at Aquinoe Learning Centre have now completed their National exams, along with others in primary schools across Kenya.

We wish them well.

Results will be announced by the end of November so that selection for secondary schools can be completed before the new term starts in January 2019.


Talk about Aquinoe

Last year St Giles church in Shipbourne (near Tonbridge in Kent) gave generously towards the water harvesting project at Aquinoe.

On Sunday Jean gave a talk during the family service to let the congregation know a little more about the school and charity and also show them photos of the equipment used for the water harvesting project.



Successful quiz 2018

The annual fundraising quiz raised a wonderful total of almost £800 for the Aquinoe Learning Centre at the weekend.

Despite a couple of setbacks over the question papers, the general mood in the Capel Village Hall was upbeat and the competitors all seemed to enjoy themselves.

The “Hungovers” were the eventual winners with a total of 106 points, after a really close contest, with “Let’s Get Quizzical” just half a point behind.

As ever, we were lucky to have local companies and individuals providing prizes for the raffle, and competitors were really generous in buying tickets.

Many thanks to Portmeirion, Barsleys, Capel Country Garden, Five Oak Green Stores, Five Oak Green Service Station and Homecare  for their generosity, as well as many personal friends.

We were also very grateful to Olwyn, long time supporter of the charity, for creating two paintings which were auctioned during the evening and raised £125.   Thank you Jon for your auctioneer skills.

Thanks also to Jeff for the loan of audio equipment and for setting it up.

Setting up of the hall could not have been done without the help  trustees and spouses – so thanks to them as well.


Quiz date!

Our major fundraiser for the Aquinoe Learning Centre – the annual quiz will be held in less than a fortnight.  Preparations are all complete.

Details are as follows:

Saturday 27th October
Capel Village Hall,
Falmouth Place,
Five Oak Green,
TN12 6RD
Doors open at 19:00 ready for start at 19:30
4-6 people per team
Nibbles provided, but bring your own drink and glasses
Entry fee:
£5 per person
Come along if you can – we’d love to see you.
You can join others in a similar situation if you don’t have a full team.

Uno is a Hit!

It’s half term for day pupils at Aquinoe, but the boarders are still at school.

Alexa and Jenny have taken in the card game Uno and have taught the children how to play.  They love it!


Volunteers’ Visit to Hairdresser

Alexa and Jenny have taken a well-earned break from their heavy schedule at Aquinoe to emphasise their mzungu look at the hairdresser, before taking a trip to the supermarket.

Charity benefits from sales of plants

MB and JB, longstanding supporters of the Aquinoe Learning Centre, have made another generous donation to the charity.

M is a horticulturalist who always propagates more than she needs for her garden and passes on extra produce at her garden gate.

The latest donation of £115 will add to the tranche of money we are about to send to the school.

Alexa Writes:

We arrived in Kitale for the first time last week.

Wow, we were very impressed with what we saw. Aquinoe is full of bright and spirited children and staff . All were incredibly welcoming. We were called mazungo by the children and our straight hair was much stroked.

We have spent the week helping Ernest and Josphat to look at appraisal structures and general systems to make things a bit easier for staff in the future .

The rains are here and we have sudden rivers daily, quickly followed by sun. The next three days are a school holiday so we’ll go and visit the boarders and teach them
A spot of uno!

Volunteer Visit Bears Fruit

Alexa and Jenny continue to work very hard at Aquinoe and have made real progress with administrative matters, particularly with those related to teaching and monitoring.

They took some time out on Saturday and walked to the Kitale Nature Conservancy along with school staff and pupils.


More of Alexa and Jenny

Alexa and Jenny have been at Aquinoe for a week now and have got through a tremendous amount of work – talking to staff and pupils, making observations and suggestions, writing reports and taking photographs.

Thank you so much – the trustees are very grateful.

Alexa and Jenny volunteer in Kitale

Alexa and Jenny, two highly experienced teachers and administrators arrived at Aquinoe at the weekend and were welcomed by Josphat, the Director, and Lilyan, Chair of the Board.

They have set about tasks at the school and have already been chatting to staff, taking photos and making plans.


Olwyn donates more paintings

Local artist Olwyn has been busy creating more Kenyan scenes and has donated the paintings to the Aquinoe Learning Centre.

Two of the paintings will be auctioned at the upcoming quiz being held on 27th October.

What a great gift – thank you Olwyn.

Artist donates picture

Olwyn Kinghorn, a local artist and friend, has painted a picture of some Aquinoe Learning Centre school staff and a couple of the charity trustees at the entrance to to school in Kitale, which she has very kindly donated to us.

Thank you so much Olwyn.


Cherry Beach Blackhawks

Cherry Beach Soccer Club is in Toronto and is the team that has collected outgrown football kit recently and sent several parcels to the pupils at the Aquinoe Learning Centre.

Many thanks for these wonderful donations.

This photo shows the Under 14 team with their coaches.


Heavy Rains

There have been heavy rains in Trans Nzoia county in Kenya.

This has been of great benefit to the Aquinoe Learning Centre as the new water tanks are now completely filled.

New Computers for Pupils

The charity sends out money for specific projects for the Aquinoe Learning Centre three times a year.

In the last transfer an allocation was sent for a few computers to replace the previous ones which were old, many of which were no longer in service.

These have arrived and the pupils were eager to use them.

The plan is to send the finance for more computers in due course.

Another shipment from Canada

Damien has collected another batch of outgrown football kit and boots from the players at Cherry Beach Soccer Club in Toronto and sent it out to Aquinoe.

This is the second parcel the school has received in 2018 and the pupils were excited to see even more kit arriving for them.

The following are comments from the Director:

“We had a session where the children wore them for the whole afternoon just to clear the anxiety after they had been spotted arriving at the school. All the children had something to wear. They had fun and some day scholars were unwilling to remove them before going home that evening. We had to assure them that they will always get chance to wear them during special occasions. ”

Many, many thanks to all involved.



Min’s Party Raises Money for Aquinoe

Min’s seventieth party has raised two hundred and fifty pounds for the Aquinoe Learning Centre.

Min accompanied Jean to the school in Kitale in February and was highly impressed with what goes on at the school.

She celebrated her birthday last week with a party on the beach at Sandgate and suggested friends and family might like to contribute donations to the ALC.

What a wonderful idea and a fantastic total.

Many thanks to Min and her friends.




Super Sporting Shipment

The pupils at the Aquinoe Learning Centre have just received another box of football shirts, shorts and boots from Canada.

Children who play for the Cherry Beach Soccer Club in Toronto donate kit when they’ve outgrown it.  This is collected by a good friend of the charity and is sent to the Aquinoe.

Staff and pupils were very excited when the box arrived yesterday and children were delighted to try out the kit today and play games.

Cherry Beach kit sent in the past has been used when Aquinoe children have represented the school in the community.  Comments have been made that they are the smartest pupils in the area!