THE DELTA KAPPA GAMMA SOCIETY INTERNATIONAL :: GREAT BRITAIN

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State News

 

 

Woodberry Wetlands

 Diana Bell Alpha Chapter

It was a perfect sunny day when Alpha members arrived at Manor Place Tube Station near Finsbury Park. Just down the road are the wetlands, opened in 2016 by Sir David Attenborough. This wetlands project was conceived by the London Wildlife Trust in partnership with Thames Water, entry is free. It spans 11 hectares of Stoke Newington’s East Reservoir and there is a reed-fringed lake and woodlands with the New River, built to bring water from Hertfordshire, running by.

There are many species of birds to observe and a café in the refurbished Coal House. We found it an ideal place for a pleasant walk.

Unity Harvey attends the  Norwegian State Conference 

 

I went to the historic Granavolden Guesthouse, which I recommend for its beautiful setting and superb food.  The Norwegian State President, Anne Marie Solstad, welcomed me to the Conference that was held there.  There were about fifty people present. It felt good to chat to friends I had met several times before and to meet new ones as the conference progressed.  The conference was well organized with “Generosity” as its theme.  The speakers, including the Dean Kirsten E.Almås who talked about generosity and how to belong to a community, were much appreciated; so were the musicians, particularly the singer and the violinist.  I enjoyed too, the report from Headquarters given by Hannah Fowler, Member at Large.  Participants were also able to visit the local museum, the church and walk around a nearby primary school. 
     When the conference was over, I stayed a few extra days with Anne Marie.  It snowed and I was able to build a snowman with her grand daughter, much bigger than the ones I can build at home.  The roads were clear so I was able to visit a brand new primary school - a treat, as it was very impressive!  I was also taken to see more of the countryside around an enormous long lake, another church, Babro in her house, a skilled weaver, a wood worker and a group of glass blowers.  My purse was much lighter when I returned but I shall enjoy looking at my purchases for a long time. 
I hope I shall remember this treasured journey for a very long while

 Great Britain Achievement Award

Evelyn Goodsell

 Evelyn with State President, Kathy Hodgson

 The Great Britain Achievement Award is our way of honouring a member for  something special. 
     Evelyn is a very active member who takes on responsibilities at every level, with willingness and initiative.   She has raised the profile of Great Britain in numerous ways. She is calm without fuss, going about DKG business willingly and whole heartedly, without ever expecting special praise or reward. She has presented workshops at International and Regional Conferences. She has worked on an International Committee, and been an International Speaker twice.  Evelyn has recently published an article in DKG`s eminent publication, `Collegial Exchange`, setting out Gamma Chapter`s work with the Pestalozzi International Village as a collaborative learning experience.’

Anna Evans

Canterbury Award 2017

Anna Evans was the recipient of this year's Canterbury Award.   The Award is to go towards a needy and aspirational student from Haiti who is studying for his  M.Ed. Anna has sponsored his education for some time and has been very impressed by his dedication.

 

 State Conference 2017 Highlights

A Great Gamma Meeting

 


Meeting with students from Beechwood school and Pestalozzi Village on Saturday proved to be informative, entertaining and thought provoking.  All the students were articulate and composed in the presence of their audience of mature educationalists.  When they began their autobiographical introductions it was clear that they were exceptional teenagers with wide experiences.
The morning was hardly long enough to learn about their early education and present lives far away from their homes.  I would love to have seen them interacting with each other and to have had time to sit and talk to them informally as there was so much more I was burning to ask.
One wonders what life is like for them back home, what are their aspirations for the future and what are their realistic expectations.

Bettina Kulsdom

Congratulations to

Evelyn Goodsell 

 Evelyn's article Pestalozzi International Village and a DKG Chapter: A Collaborative Learning Experience has been published in the 2016,Volume 83-2 issue of the Collegial Exchange. This article highlights the connection we, in Gamma Chapter, have with Pestalozzi International Village.

To read this article please follow the link.

http://www.dkg.org/DKGMember/Publications/Bulletin-Magazine.aspx

 

Life on Sumba

 Ann McCue, MBE. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ann talking to Pat Johnson after the talk to Gamma members

 

www.projecthopesumba.org   

 

 

Report by Diane Billam 

Ann McCue, MBE. related how,  whilst  staying with an Indonesian friend, she had visited the island, and noted the poverty.   In 2002 they decided to set up a charity, which is still going strong, now mainly run by local people, although Ann continues to visit every year.  .  Ann showed us that Sumba is an outlying island, far from Jakarta, the capital. There are three towns on the island. People survive by subsistence farming.  The houses are built on stilts.  Animals live underneath, the family on the ground floor, and the spirits of the ancestors in the roof space.  The kitchen is in the middle.
Local markets sell fruit and vegetables, but the main product is betel nuts which they also export..  People chew a mixture of nuts + shoots from a vine + lime obtained from the ground.   This mixture when chewed turns bright red, and produces a drug similar to coca, which is very addictive.   Chewing also rots the teeth and can cause brain damage. 
Travel is by truck, van, or motorbike, often used as taxis.  All fuel is imported, and in short supply, with long queues for each tanker full. 
In villages in remoter areas children suffer from worms and malnutrition, and are usually filthy.  Grandparents often take care of children.  There is a shortage of water which  has to be collected in cans.  Villages try to build their own schools, and if they can run successfully for a year, government funding is available, and the charity helps them petition the government for these funds to build better schools.   Children often walk six km to the nearest school. There are state primary schools, junior high, and some private schools, with a few secondary schools, and there is some support for bright children.
The charity set up `Project Hope`, to help provide water tanks, household and school toilets, school classrooms, health education especially for mothers and babies, and help for disabled children.  So far they have provided 38 school classrooms in 10 different schools, 500 water tanks, 1000 household or school toilets.  There are some government schools, and one funded by other charities, with 3 classrooms.  All building has to be done manually.  Teachers are only part-time, badly paid, and have to farm in order to survive.  There is now some teacher training on the island.   Once established a school may be allocated per capita funding by the state for resources.  For the health programme, there is nutrition advice, and children`s progress is monitored.  The advice is often shared by villagers.  There has been some help for disabled children from a Philipino physio volunteer.   A visiting team from Singapore and Australia carry out cataract operations.  Some children are sent to Bali for operations to correct severe disfigurement, such as hare lip or cleft palate, with some training for follow-up therapy. Australia is providing some wheelchairs, 40 so far, with 169 to come in March.   These make an enormous difference to disabled children.

Emma Williams

Executive Director of PTA UK, whose Head Office is in Tonbridge. 

 

Emma had previously spent twenty years working in the Arts, and took up her first leadership role two years ago.  PTA UK is the largest membership organisation representing parent bodies in schools.

Emma explained that her organisation encourages parents to realise what an important, and critical, part they can play in schools.  PTAs are in 56% of schools in the UK, 69% of which are in primary schools.  PTAs are politically neutral but they encourage Government to listen to parents, who, in turn, feel empowered to increase pressure on academic outcomes.

PTA UK continues its policy of working to give parents a voice in their schools, and to take part by volunteering to help in schools as well as fund-raising.   Following her talk, Emma invited members to discuss the subject.

I attended a talk given by Emma at Broadwater school. PTA and others came and we were persuaded to sign up to support the school in many ways - marketing, running clubs, fundraising, office /admin. skills. Emma is working very closely with the head.     Sandra Blacker

 

 

Initiation of Elisha Wagstaff
Alpha Chapter

September 2016



Barbara Kern, Chapter President with Penny Kinnear (Chapter Vice-president) and  Elisha Wagstaff

 

 

Elisha is the newest member of Alpha Chapter,  having become an Associate Member of Great Britain State while she was starting out in teaching. She has just taken up a new post as a year 6 teacher in a Wandsworth primary school, after three years in Sydenham. She has also  moved home during the summer holidays.  Barbara Kern  and all Alpha members wish Elisha well in her new surroundings at both work and home.    

Carol Dawson conducts the village children's concert in Vilafranca, Mallorqua, Spain

 

The cantata is called Podries ser tu which is Catalan for 'It could be you'. It was written by a teacher from the village and is about a little refugee boy who arrives in a Mallorquin village all alone. He saves a local girl from drowning and befriends an old, grumpy man, whom the local children tease.

All ends happily 

Carol conducted the village children in their holiday production.  There were two performances at 10pm.  It was so late because of the heat.  The concerts were a great success and many compliments were showered on Carol from the audience, the press and, most important, from the children.


Unity Harvey had an interesting visit whilst at the International Convention in Nashville

 

On July 4th, Diana Bell and I went out with a lifelong friend of Diana’s. Firstly we bought fruit for our breakfasts for convention week. Then we were taken on a neighbourhood tour.  We saw these hives near the gardener’s house museum in Belle Meade Plantation, Tennessee.  The bees are congregating outside the hive quietly fanning to keep the hive cool. It was very hot.  We were glad of the air-conditioning in the car!  

Dorothy Haley
Gamma Chapter
died on 30th May, 2016

Area Representative for Europe
GB State President
First recipient of the European Achievement Award

 

For Memories of Dorothy

please follow this link