All enclosures here in Liberia are called “compounds.” As an English major, the connotation behind compound seems sterile, hinging on the edge of negative. However, here in Liberia all organizations like Mary’s Meals, government facilities, like the Ministry of Education, and housing communities are most often sectioned off into compounds.
Within these compounds you can typically find security guards. The reason for this being that crime, mainly theft, in Liberia is very high.
Some compounds have extremely tall walls to literally keep others out (many high schools are constructed this way with high walls and barbed wire) while others, like Mary’s Meals are simply a group of buildings in close proximity to each other.