HASTE was started by the late Marjorie Warwick. Marjorie was a regular holidaymaker in The Gambia who was struck by the lack of provision of education to Gambian children. The need was particularly great among the under sevens, for whom there is no state education provided. On her travels around the country she was impressed by the children she met who, despite this, showed great intelligence and willingness to learn.
Marjorie was determined to help them. She organised the local community in Abuko village to donate land to build a school on and collected money in the UK for the building. She opened Abuko Nursery School back in October 1997. At that time it was just a structure with a roof – just two classrooms and a headmaster’s office. Sadly Marjorie died before she had had the opportunity to provide anything else for the school but, after her death, Judith Hughes took on HASTE’s work. In 2000 she registered HASTE officially as a charity.
In 2006 Sarah Warwick became a trustee, and in 2016 Lucy Warwick, Andrea Cox and Georgina Cox also joined as trustees. Today HASTE has built 10 schools and provided educational materials for more, as well as paying for electricity, equipment and staffing for other educational projects in Africa.