How it started



Ivor Leigh Memorial School: A Family’s Vision

The ILMS, a nursery, primary and secondary school in Sierra Leone, was initiated by Ivor Leigh, a Sierra Leonean living in Kaningo. Tragically, he died  before his dream of building a school could be realised.

His family and his sister Rita Edmond, who lives in the UK, vowed to continue his work and in 2006 the Ivor Leigh Memorial School was set up in Kaningo, in a temporary structure made of tarpaulin and corrugated iron, teaching children aged 3-13 a primary education programme. The numbers grew until there were around 300 children being taught there. The situation was far from ideal, as the school was unusable in the rainy season – a permanent building was required.

CESO was set up as a Registered Charity in 2009, enabling us to access a range of fundraising opportunities to support the school.

We were fortunate in securing the help of the Architecture and Spatial Design department of the London Metropolitan University to oversee the building project, providing volunteer architects for the design. With the help of grants and donations from our loyal supporters finally, the new school building opened in September 2011, a place to be safe and learn.