Charity Starts at Home – Sgt Sada Sumareh AGC

“The kids were so happy. It was all over the news. I was chatting to one of the older children who said he wants to join the British Army”.

In the wake of Abberley Hall school’s unexpected closure in Worcestershire, a silver lining emerged through the philanthropic efforts of Sgt Sumareh. His deep-rooted connection with his homeland sparked a generous initiative to equip a Gambian military school with essential educational resources.


Sgt “Maxi”, who hails from Churchills Town, The Gambia, is Personal Assistant to the Director of Personnel, Major General Humphris MBE. A married father of two children, he has given back his time and skills to become a role model to many youngsters back in his home community.

“I was a good kid but one of those kids who would not listen, and if I had stayed on the streets of Plymouth, the way I was going who knows where I would have ended up. Joining the Army transformed me from a boy to a man and taught me a lot about self-control and discipline.”

The dissolution of the historic school led to an act of international kindness, as Sgt Sumareh orchestrated the shipment of a container brimming with academic supplies from the UK to The Gambia. Funded entirely by the shuttered institution, this gesture aimed to bolster the educational infrastructure of the military school. In a testament to his dedication, Sgt Sumareh personally financed his travel expenses.

The ceremonial handover of materials on December 22nd, 2023, was a momentous occasion, graced by the Gambian Armed Forces’ top brass, educators, and families, all gathered at Yundum Barracks to witness this act of goodwill.

Maxi’s efforts are particularly focused on the upliftment of underprivileged children. With a firm belief in the transformative power of education, he has taken it upon himself to sponsor the academic pursuits of many young minds. By providing essential school materials, Sgt Sumareh ensures that these children are equipped with the necessary tools to chase their educational aspirations.

However, his contributions extend beyond the classroom. Sgt Sumareh is a staunch advocate for female empowerment, especially through the medium of sports. His passion for football has led him to donate unused football kits, sourced from the Army FA, to various teams. Notably, his generosity has reached the Gambia Armed Forces’ female football team, fostering an environment where young women are encouraged to engage in sports actively.

Recently selected for promotion to SSgt, Maxi is adamant there is more opportunity for him in an Army that actively seeks to develop its people to realise their talent. “I want to become an Accountant, so I have applied for a Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship”. With this qualification, he hopes to build towards his long-term ambition of commissioning within the Army,

Sgt Sumareh’s actions resonate with the spirit of giving and the belief in equal opportunities for all. His story is not just one of personal success but a testament to the impact one individual can have on the lives of many. Through his unwavering dedication, Sgt Sumareh continues to be a role model, not only in The Gambia but for anyone who believes in the power of community service and the importance of nurturing the next generation. “I am very proud of myself, as is my family, for what I have achieved through the Army, including travelling the world. Now, I just want to take every opportunity the Army has given me so that I can to give back to my own hometown and its people”.

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