Alan joined Banbury Rotary Club in 2004.
At District Assembly in 2005 he heard a 10 minute talk about Mercy Ships. Rotarians were invited to volunteer & “spend 11 days in Sierra Leone and make a real difference”. He’d never been anywhere in the third world but says “although we constantly see images of poverty in the media it was only when I went and spent time amongst it that I REALLY understood the REAL situation. I thought it would be a “one off” life experience BUT it was life changing for me - I’ve now been 12 times”.
Alan receives financial support from Banbury Rotary Club, Rotarians and clubs within District 1090, other Rotary clubs, schools and organisations, both locally & further afield, BUT he is very much the “Champion” of the Sierra Leone work.
He has co-ordinated the funding for the development of 5 schools including: building & equipping 32 classrooms (21 with water harvesting systems and 9 with mains electricity), building 5 toilet blocks (3 with water harvesting and handwash stations), 2 water wells and many refurbishment projects.
In addition Alan’s project has sponsored over 200 children to go to school, supported their communities during the e-bola crisis, set up a small micro credit scheme, supported two orphaned teenagers/young adults and a community football club. Alan has also sent tens of thousands of pounds worth of assorted humanitarian aid to Sierra Leone.
Alan, whose tag line is “Making A Real Difference” has raised a total of £242,700, (360 talks have generated £91,850) for his projects since starting to work directly with communities in 2007.
He is a “District 1090 (Rotarian) in Action, Making A Better World”
Alan has received the following Rotary awards for his work in Sierra Leone:
2009 - Paul Harris Fellowship; 2013 - "Service Above Self" Rotary International award; 2018 – Rotary in Britain and Ireland Champion of Change award.
Read more about Alan's work in Sierra Leone on his website www.alansafrica.co.uk