Hi everyone! :)
So as a bit of background… As some friends & family may already know, in August 2019 I headed to Zambia on a volunteer teaching project. This was the most joyous and enriching time of my life, and there had never been a season more wholesome and rewarding than my time spent there!
Throughout the time of my placement, by interacting and forming relationships with my host and the close-knit community there, I witnessed (often in awe) the “love your neighbour as you love yourself”-type of love that this community so fervently embodies. Their boundless selflessness, sincere compassion, and authentic expression of their Christian faith has so deeply touched my heart.
Throughout my teen years, I always had a hope of developing something in the education field one day, and I maintain a keen interest in international development. Given these interests of mine, combined with the glaring reality that the lack of appropriate infrastructure presents issues to communities like Maramba, I have decided to set out to renovate and build onto the Christian school where I volunteered in August. This project will be independent of the NGO through which I worked last time, and completely organised by me and one of my good friends, and this will be a faith-based project too.
I have decided to use my savings from 2 years of a part-time job to cover the cost of textbooks, pencil cases with stationery, and workbooks for all 246 students. Any donations over our goal amount will be going towards further purchases of learning materials.
Since discussing this project with more friends, however, I now have more volunteers available than I had initially hoped for, so now we are able to fully renovate 4 of the classrooms instead of only 2 in our planned timeframe! This, however, is now where the costs begin to really add up… and where we hope that you are able to help us out!
The general state of the school:
The compound has a basic U-shape structure, with 6 classrooms that accommodate around 24 students each. Students share desks — for example, my class had 3 students to a single desk during exam term… Each class has a single shared textbook. The roofs are not secured down and they all leak, there are cracks in the walls, and windows and doors still have to be installed into many of the frames i.e. there are holes in the walls where a doorframe and window frame is meant to be…
The building plan is to now renovate 4 of the classrooms, keeping their original basic structure:
- remove and then replace roofs
- re-brick a few of the walls
- insert windows and doors
- knock out a wall to insert a window frame
- add gutters for freshwater collection for the community
- plaster the walls
- add concrete flooring (where there is a sand/dirt flooring)
- build desks suitable to accommodate fluctuating numbers of pupils
- communal library for the local children using donated books
- installation of water tanks
- toys for the pre-primary classroom
The plan is to head back to Zambia in the first quarter of 2020, with a group of volunteers from South Africa. Even if the goal for funding is not fully reached, the project is planned in stages so some progress will still be made with the funding that is available. For example, we may build/renovate two of the classrooms instead of four.
If you would like to help me spread the word for this project, please feel free to share the link to this page to your social media pages or What's App group chats! There is also an option to donate anonymously should you prefer to do so.
The teachers from this community are truly wonderful people, and they all go to such great lengths to ensure that their local children (all highly motivated learners) receive the best education that is available to them. I hope that you will join my team in contributing to this amazing community.
From the absolute bottom of my heart — THANK YOU
Vera :) 19, South Africa.