Islington People: Dentist is building schools in Uganda
PUBLISHED: 18:53 04 September 2011 | UPDATED: 21:40 04 September 2011
»An Islington dentist is swapping braces for bricks and building a school in Uganda.
Mark Lynch, an orthodontist at the Angel Dental and Cosmetic Centre in High Street, flew out to the African country with a team of engineers on Monday.
Last year, he helped to build a school in Kyengera, a village near the capital Kampala, through his charity Project le Monde – and he has gone back to construct a major extension.
Moved to help
Mark, 43, was moved to help when he learned the nearest school was 10 miles away and could only be reached on foot.
“That really struck a nerve”, he said. “When I got back home I realised how we just take education for granted.
“Our school is the only one in the area and has become a very important part of village life. The children now don’t have to walk so far and are just delighted to have been given an education, which wasn’t freely available to them before.”
New classrooms will provide places for a further 130 children, aged four to 11, bringing the capacity to 200 in all.
The school’s fees are very low, with all funds going to pay the teachers, and 20 per cent of the places are provided for free and taken by orphaned children.
Mark and his wife Anne, who is also a trustee of the charity, held an auction to raise funds for the project and have smashed their target by raising more than £12,000.
The charity aims to build 15 schools in the next five years and hopes to spread out to other countries in Africa.
Mark added: “It’s clear that in some areas of Africa there is a lack of education, but people value it very highly.
“It is a cause very close to my heart.”
n For more information, or to make a donation to Project le Monde, visit www.projectlemonde.org.uk.