August 2, 2016

History

Windle was set-up by Dr. Hugh Pilkington in 1977, when he decided to help individual refugees who had fled the fighting in Ethiopia.  Hugh came into contact with these young people through his work and interest in ancient scriptural texts, which were written in the Ethiopic language of Geez.   Using his own funds and contacts, he sought to find a place at Cambridge or Oxford (where he had studied for his own Bachelors and PhD) to give them an opportunity to fulfil their educational potential.

Having realised the extent of the crisis and its future repercussions for the whole region, Hugh created Windle Trust Kenya to sponsor bright and committed individuals known to him.  The Universities responded to this vision by offering scholarships to give the students the chance of education and hope for their future whilst their country was in turmoil.

Uncle Hugh

Dr. Hugh Pilkington

A visionary with a breadth of insight, Hugh could see that unless the youth of the country were able to get an education and continue their learning, that when peace was declared and the refugees returned there would be no-one in a position to sustain the peace; to develop the systems and infrastructures and rebuild the country and there was, therefore, a great likelihood of a return to conflict.

This point of view was ahead of its time but now is being recognised as a vital part of breaking the cycle of conflict.

Hugh passionately believed in the power of the individual to make a difference.  He believed that Africans should be the architects of their own future and that the solutions and opportunities for peaceful development are contained within Africa and its people through access to good educational opportunities.

In 1988 Hugh Pilkington was tragically killed in a car accident when attending a conference in Canada on the Rights of Refugees.

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WINDLE NOW 

Windle continues to provide scholarships and education to those people affected by conflict, refugees, former child soldiers, host populations and internally displaced persons (IDPs) across East Africa giving the most vulnerable – support, education and the tools to shape their future.

Windle also invests and supports exceptional individuals as far as their potential will take them.

The impact we have on each life can be transformative, for the individual and the wider community.  Our alumni are our biggest partners in achieving the vision of peaceful development in Africa.  Current Windle alumni are professionals in a range of fields:  health, accountancy, environment, aid, development, human rights, law, forestry, teaching, government ministries and much more.

Windle carries out its work through each country Trust in Kenya, Uganda and the UK and through the country offices in South Sudan, Ethiopia and Sudan.

Windle can only do this through the support and generosity of each and every donor who has decided to make a difference, whether this is an individual choosing to support a single student, a volunteer giving their time and expertise or institutional funding from large donors helping to meet Sustainable Development Goals – these funds are vital in helping us transform lives and communities and working together to move from Conflict To Peace:  Refugee Education.