A staggering 21 students and three staff from Christleton High School have just returned from a four week expedition in the jungles of Borneo having made a real difference through their charity work in the Sabah region.
The trip was organised alongside expedition specialists Camps International who, since 2002, have been living, working and making a real difference in numerous locations across Africa and Asia.
Outlining their involvement, Christleton teacher and expedition leader Jane Parker said: “Camps International are the only expedition company to own, manage and operate 25 permanent and exclusive camps in the heart of rural communities and wildlife areas.
“Their involvement brings significant revenue and assistance to the poorest rural communities that would otherwise not benefit from visitors. With an in-country team of over 150 local staff, they employ locally, pay fairly and treat ethically.”
Some examples of the voluntary work carried out by Christleton’s students included the clearing of paths in the jungle and building steps to drag a pipeline to the river to provide a water source for local villagers.
But the good work didn’t end there.
Jane added: “Other projects the students completed included the building of a kindergarten school, mixing and laying of a concrete base in the local market square, the re-painting of a local school and the planting of trees in damaged rainforest.”
While the trip was designed to provide the means to carry out charity work and stretch the students, it wasn’t all about hard work. A number of other events were arranged to ensure that Christleton’s students were able to sample the local Borneo culture.
These included a five day jungle trek in foothills of Mt Kinabalu, a visit to Sepilok orangutan sanctuary, the learning local crafts, songs and language and also helping to teach English to the students of a local school.
Christleton High School headteacher Damian Stenhouse added: “We are, of course, extremely proud of our students, who initially raised over £4,000 themselves to fund the travel and living expenses for the month long charity work expedition.
“However, we were even more impressed by the enthusiastic and incredibly committed way in which they threw themselves into carrying out the charity work. We are confident, that the charity work will have a lasting impact on the areas of Sabah they visited.
“Hopefully the names of Christleton and Chester in general will be fondly remembered in Sabah for many years to come.”