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Officer cadets from Southampton ignore travel warning to help Kenya education project
Updated 2:27pm Tuesday 8th July 2014 in News
A GROUP of Southampton officer cadets will be travelling to Kenya to help the community.
The team is going to the country to improve children’s access to education.
And although the Government is currently advising British tourists not to travel to Kenya because of terrorism threats, the group is determined to go.
It is a trip which was inspired by fellow cadet Quinn Sorabjee who is based in Loughborough but grew up in Naivasha – a Nakuru market town.
Five members of the Thunderer Squadron at the National Oceonography Centre in Southampton will be making the journey.
First year University of Southampton computer science students Todd Lynes and Chris Argles, both 19 from Swaythling will be joining civil engineering student Rosey Burchell, 19 from Bassett for the adventure.
Also venturing out to Kenya will be second year environmental sciences student Hannah Kirkham, 20, from Portswood and Gary Chivers, 21 from Portswood who is in his third year studying mechanical engineering.
The officer cadets are all part of an undergraduate scheme called the Defence Technical Officer and Engineer Entry Scheme (DTOEES) encouraging young people to join the military and there are four squadrons set up in universities across the UK.
After university Todd plans to join the RAF, Rosey and Hannah want to join the Armed Forces and Gary and Chris want to join the Navy, so this trip will be the perfect opportunity for them to develop adventure skills and understand the varied culture.
They will set off in July and spend three weeks buiding facilities at a primary school, including a sanitation centre and volleyball shelter as well as visiting a conservancy which is the largest home for black rhinos in East Africa.
The students are now rallying support in Hampshire after being tasked with raising a minimum of £500 each for the Nakuru Children’s Project and the Tusk Trust Sanctuary.
Hannah said: “We are excited to learn about the different cultures and can’t wait to get involved with the community out there.We have never really been outside of Europe.”
Todd added: “The Commonwealth Office has advised us not to travel along the east coast near Mombasa. Nakuru is very central – we’re talking hundreds and hundreds of miles away from the coast, so we are all very keen to go ahead. All the money we raise will go straight to the charities and having all done fundraising work before it will be really rewarding to see how it helps.”