Our Founder – Tony Allen

Tony with Kids

My father served in East Africa in the Kings African Rifles during the Second World War and befriended Ken Smith, a fellow Soldier who became my Godfather and together, with my Dad, a major influence in my life.  Ken became a senior game warden working with the Adamson’s and was with them when they were charged by Elsa the Lionesses mother which effectively started the whole Born Free Story.  I was lucky enough, at a young age, to attend the premier with the cast and when older repeatedly visited my Godfather.  It was during this time of adventure in Africa that seeing not only the talents but also the unimaginable poverty in some of the rural communities we visited, that I vowed later in life to attempt to make a real difference especially to the lives of the children.

My work in Africa started in Malawi working in health, education and clean water.  I worked supporting existing charities and expanded into Eastern Uganda where we started providing primary education and healthcare.   With my experience in running a business for many years, I believed that I could create a more direct model of help where effectively we work alongside the local communities with all funds going directly to building contractors and community groups where we oversee how the money is spent.  It was through this that we began the embryo African Revival in 2000 which became a charity in its own right in 2005.

I have been encouraged and supported by not only my business colleagues but also family and friends, who share the key vision that by giving every child equal access to a quality, basic education they will have a better chance of positively impacting the people around them, breaking free from a cycle of subsistence farming/labouring.    Our work in the schools often commences by creating an adequate infrastructure.  This is, however, only a beginning to providing a holistic approach to the whole teaching environment that includes pre-school, teacher training, sanitation/clean water, scholastic resource and sport/music provision.

As an organisation we recognise the importance that all donors wish their gifts will have the maximum impact possible. In achieving this it is critical to marry up the needs of the community, and our abilities to deliver in country, with our donors and trustee expectation.  At African Revival we keep administrative cost to a minimum as all our office costs are sponsored – and our small team can only function thanks to the support from an excellent team of volunteers.   Our teams, in country, carry out stringent due diligence and monitoring; our commitment to you is that we’ll ensure we make the biggest change where it is needed most.

We would love you to get involved.   I’d be more than happy to talk to you personally if you would like to get in touch – tony.allen@completecovergroup.com