A 16-YEAR-OLD schoolgirl returned from aid work in Uganda to find out she passed all of her GCSEs.
Chloe Limerick, from Bay House School, travelled to the east African country as part of a charity initiative through Hampshire Scouts.
She carried out aid work at a local school, helped to provide clean water and donated mosquito nets to a local hospital – the same one she attended after breaking her wrist!
Chloe said: ‘We camped at the school and painted 20 classrooms. We also donated books and stationery. It was very different to schools in England. There were no computers and up to 100 children in a class. The pupils taught us traditional dance and how to use a machete to cut wood.’
The school was based in the town of Masindi and as part of the expedition Chloe and her fellow Scouts had to raise £500 for clean water projects. Chloe raised £2000 through a summer fete and race night.
Chloe said: ‘We visited a site where people were drinking dirty water which was used by animals. By the end of the trip the area had been resurfaced, fenced off and what was a dirty pool was replaced by a pipe system with fresh water.’
The final week was spent in Kenya where the Scouts went on safari and got to try white water rafting on the Nile. Unfortunately for Chloe, after breaking her wrist falling off a chair, she had to settle for a leisurely cruise down the iconic river.
Chloe said: ‘We were so lucky as we saw the big five – lion, leopard, rhinoceros, elephant, and buffalo – in the first two hours and also spent time with the Maasai. I loved the elephant orphanage and even got to kiss a giraffe.’
During her time in Africa, Chloe chose not to find out her GCSE results. Despite struggling with dyslexia, Chloe scored grades 9 to 4 in all her subjects.
‘I’m pleased I waited until I got home as I was able to celebrate with my parents. It was the trip-of-a-lifetime but the best bit is knowing we made a difference to other people’s lives,’ said Chloe.