UCW students benefit from links to The Gambia

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Students from University Centre Weston (UCW) have visited The Gambia for the eighth year in a row.

The 25 students took up the opportunity to go on the week-long trip to the West African country as part of their Early Years Education and Counselling degrees.

Along with lecturers from the courses, which are delivered in partnership with Bath Spa University, the students took part in a programme put together with the help of local guides and organisations.

After landing in Banjul, the country’s capital city, the group was invited to Ayr Luton School, Xavier School and The Gambia College to see how the country provides education.

They then visited Kunta Kinteh Island, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its historical significance to the slave trade.

The itinerary also included a safari and daytrips to Makasutu and Serekunda, so the students could experience local life in The Gambia.

UCW Early Years Programme Leader Nakissa Campbell said: “Our courses explore global perspectives on childhood so the visit was such a valuable learning experience for the students.

“Although we can discuss how different cultures approach early years education from a theoretical perspective, The Gambia offers us the chance to see how the alternatives to Euro-centric and Western models are actually applied in real settings.

“UCW’s links to The Gambia are really established now, so we weren’t just restricted to the tourist spots, which made for a much more meaningful experience.”