Burnley charity loads up truckful of gifts for its seventh country

Terry Burns chairman, front, with trustee Julie Cooper, right,  and Coun Mark Townsend, leader of Burnley Council, second from the far right, alongside volunteers as they load the 61st container

Terry Burns chairman, front, with trustee Julie Cooper, right, and Coun Mark Townsend, leader of Burnley Council, second from the far right, alongside volunteers as they load the 61st container

First published in News Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A BURNLEY charity which sends furniture to impoverished schools across the world has sent out a container to its seventh different country.

Furniture for Education Worldwide packed up its 61st container last week, but it was the first destined for the Southeast Asian country of Cambodia.

The charity was launched in November 2008 with a mission to send surplus and redundant furniture from the Government’s Building Schools for the Future (BSF) scheme to schools in deprived countries around the world.

So far they have sent containers to India, The Gambia, Ghana, Pakistan, Kenya and Egypt.

County Coun Terry Burns, who runs the charity, said: “It’s fantastic to be sending our 61st container and also to be reaching out to our seventh country.

“We’ve sent lots of tables and chairs which have been donated by Burnley schools, and 90 computer systems which were donated by Unite the union. We’ve looked to get to Cambodia before but it has been quite tricky because of the customs system at the docks there.”

The container was packed up at Oxford Mill, in Briercliffe, on Friday, with the help of Burnley council leader Coun Mark Townsend.

It set off for Cambodia later that day and is due to arrive in around four weeks. Each container costs between £1,500 and £6,000 to ship.

In November, volunteers will be going to The Gambia, where they will be attempting to build a new playground in just five days.

The charity, based in Holgate Street, Burnley, was founded after Coun Burns visited Pakistan with Mike Tull, the head teacher of Marsden Heights Community College.

They were appalled at the lack of furniture and resources in the schools, so set up FEW to send excess furniture from BSF to help out.

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