The Butterfly Tree Latest Happenings
Last month I was delighted to learn from Gumtree that The Butterfly Tree was to be the beneficiary for a fundraising activity, taking place in April. The aim was to upcycle an old and unrepairable Beetle and turn it into a number of unique pieces of furniture and household items.
To achieve this Gumtree engaged TV personality Max McMurdo of Reestore and a team of designers, upcyclers and bloggers to report on all the action. They had just six days to complete the task, and then the items would go on sale.
Several of the team, including Max, worked tirelessly throughout the week, with volunteers increasing over the weekend. I was invited over to Bedford to observe the production line and meet the team, it was so exciting that I returned on the Saturday to see the items taking shape. A bed, a dressing table, chairs, lamps and wall clocks were just some of the ingenious designs unfolding.
Gumtree are now selling the items on their Beetlemania site. All proceeds, including an incredibly generous offer from the company to match the funds raised, with be donated to The Butterfly Tree. 100% of the money raised will go to to building a much needed classroom block for the 1,050 children at River View School, where there are as many as 80 pupils per class.
On behalf of the charity I would like to thank Gumtree, Max McMurdo and all the dedicated volunteers who generously offered their expertise and gave up their time to support our cause in Zambia.
End Malaria For Good
The Butterfly Tree in partnership with Vectorcide International introduces safe innovative malaria prevention method for World Malaria Day 2016
Malaria is the biggest killer of man – every 60 seconds a child dies from malaria. People all over the globe come together to mark this significant day.
- In 2015, there were 214 million cases, and 438 000 deaths from Malaria
- 3.2 billion (half the world’s population) are at risk
- In 2015, 97 countries had on-going malaria transmission
- The global malaria mortality rate was reduced by 60% in 2000 – 15, and an estimated 6.2 million lives were saved as a result of a scale-up of malaria interventions
We are the first charity is the world to use Vectorcide’s safe insecticidal coating and Larvicide granules to help eradicate malaria in Zambia. Both these products are highly effective, with no new cases of malaria being reported in areas of application. The products are harmless to humans, animals and the environment.
To mark this day The Butterfly Tree is hosting an event, to showcase our work in malaria prevention, at Kamwi Village in the Mukuni Chiefdom. Members of the Ministry of Health and local communities will be in attendance. Two of our team Mrs Maseka, a government Environmental Officer and Stain Musungaila will be the presenters. Stain has lost five family members to this devastating disease.
For the past eight years we have donated a vast number of mosquito nets in the Mukuni, Sekute and Nyawa Chiefdoms adding extra protection. A substantial donation will be offered to mark World Malaria Day.
The Butterfly Tree is appealing for donations to distribute more of these life-saving products in Zambia, and other areas where there is a high prevalence of malaria. Thank you to Saga, Medisave, Inner Wheel Clubs District 6, Karmakarma and all the individual donors who have already supported our malaria prevention programme.
Please DONATE Just £5 ($8) will protect a family home or buy a mosquito net.
Funding for Schools and Health Centres
I have just returned from Zambia after two weeks visiting the projects and sourcing new ones. Despite the drought, late rains provided a much needed supply of water, streams are filling up and the vegetation is lush and green. Millet and sorghum crops are growing well, but the early maize crops perished, the wet season is almost over and it will be at least six months before the next rains fall.
As always there are many projects to inspect, most especially the completed clinic at Mambova, funded by a private donor, which was a delight to see. The old crumbling clinic was infested with bats, so seeing patients being attended to at the new premises was a humbling experience. I also visited Musokotwane Clinic to donate blankets knitted by Inner Wheel District 6 Clubs and to offer them a Women’s Shelter funded by The Besom.
On other health issues we are getting great feedback from the new malaria prevention initiative, especially from Chuunga area where no new cases of malaria have been reported. In November we provided over 1,000 households with the safe insecticide coating – the results have been quite astonishing. More funds are needed to help other areas where there is a high prevalence of malaria. KarmaKarma‘s donation to purchase mosquito nets will give additional protection, the organisation also donated money to pay school examinations fees.
As always I spent a great deal of time with the orphans and located new ones to be sponsored. Regrettably HIV is still on the increase, therefore we have stepped up our HIV prevention workshops using Meet Mutsa’s peer education method. It’s heart breaking to see so much loss. The younger generation must be protected. We have enrolled several of our former sponsored orphans, who have now completed high school, to be trained as peer educators.
It was a busy time at the schools, now on a month’s break. Sinsimuku Community School development is under way thanks to a further donation from Attraction Tickets Direct. We distributed more school bags at River View School through our partnership with School in a Bag, and Monde par la Main/Give a Hand donated funds for text books – Mukuni, River View, N’dele and Sinsimuku are the beneficiary schools.
I am more determined than ever to create awareness and increase our fundraising efforts to provide much needed resources for water, food, health and education projects. We are very grateful to Colour Graphics who has kindly donated flyers, posters and banners to help with our campaign.
Providing Water, Food, Health and Education Projects
Ten years ago today I boarded a flight in Livingstone after spending an amazing week in one of the most stunning parts of Africa. The magnificent Victoria Falls is a World Heritage site and one of the Seven Wonders of the Natural World. The area has an abundance of activities including game drives, elephant back safaris, river cruises and a cultural visit to Mukuni Village.
Little did I know that a visit to this renowned village would have such an impact on me and that I would be running a charity to support orphans and vulnerable children. Nor did I imagine that I would have a global following of volunteers and supporters and be working in over one hundred villages in remote areas of Zambia.
Three weeks later I returned to Mukuni Village with my son younger son David. Inspired by three little girls, and after seeing so much need, The Butterfly Tree Charity was born. The following year we registered as an NGO in Zambia, which included the UK team and some remarkable local people who are still with me.
What started as a project to sponsor a few orphans, followed by the construction of a high school, developed far beyond any of my expectations. My motto has always been ‘I do not expect anything so everything is a bonus.’ The bonus seems to get bigger every year and the reward is being able to reach out to ‘communities that need only the essentials in life – Water, Food, Health and Education‘.
Raising funds and awareness is not always easy, especially when there are so many good causes to support. Sadly charity in the UK has become big business and vast amounts of money are needed for salaries and administration costs. From its concept I insisted that The Butterfly Tree would be run entirely by volunteers in both the UK and Zambia. This has enabled all donations and grant aid to go directly into the grass root projects – this principle is still in place.
Our projects include the development of some thirty schools and ten clinics. We have installed seventeen bore holes, constructed over eighty latrines and built seventy community houses. We have worked tirelessly to help with the prevention of HIV, training school leavers in peer education. We have sponsored several hundred orphans and helped thousands more to gain a sound basic education. We introduced the first special education units into Zambia and opened the nation’s first rural maternity clinic.
In 2014 I was offered the opportunity to introduce a safe new malaria prevention initiative into Zambia. Up until then we had only worked at District level. It was a gamble, but after months of working with the Ministry of Health and the National Malaria Control Centre the method was accepted and we were given the licence to import and distribute the products. We started distribution into remote village in November 2015, and the reports coming in are quite remarkable.
The Butterfly Tree is the first charity in the world to use this superior form of malaria prevention. Our involvement has enabled the UK company to use our name and reports to introduce the products into other countries, not only to help the fight against malaria, but also Zika, Dengue Fever and Chikungunya.
I am so grateful to all the people who have helped me to achieve so much, most especially my sons Mike and David (a trustee), and trustees Miranda de Freston and Wendy Calloway. A special thanks to all the volunteers, sponsors, donors and fundraisers who have given up their free time and a considerable amount of money to support The Butterfly Tree. None of the success could have been accomplished without our dedicated team in Zambia.
With much appreciation,
Bore Holes Needed to Help Water Shortages
For many of us the constant rainy days this winter have become tiresome. The ground is saturated, which restricts us being able to play sport, do the gardening or hang out the washing. Imagine what it would be like if you had no fresh water to drink, no rain to irrigate the crops and no streams to wash your clothes in.
While some areas of the globe are experiencing excessive rain and flooding caused by El Niño, many countries in Eastern and Southern Africa are suffering from drought. Zambia is no exception. Though substantial rain has helped parts of the nation, areas between Zimba to Livingstone, in Southern Province, have been hit for the second consecutive year. The Chiefdoms where we work are in this region.
Reports are coming in of dry streams, failed crops and food shortages. Children are drinking from shallow wells. At River View School, which is close to the Zambezi River, water is generally pumped from the river using an electric pump, but when there is no electricity, water has to be drawn from the river. Last week, a fourteen year old boy had a narrow escape. As he was drawing the water a friend noticed a crocodile heading towards him and thankfully alerted the boy in time!
Over one third of Zambia’s 15.5 million population do no have access to safe clean drinking water and 25% of all schools to not have a safe supply of water.
We have successfully installed a number of bore holes and Indian hand pumps in schools, clinics and rural communities. This facility not only provides safe drinking water, but also a source of irrigation for school gardens to create sustainable feeding programmes. As maize is rain dependent we have introduced sorghum seeds for schools, the crop requires less water, along with vegetable seeds.
Our priority over the next few months will be to source funds to provide more remote schools and clinics with bore holes. If you are interested in supporting our water projects please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or DONATE on line using our secure facilitator.
Thousands of Orphans are Educated
It is almost ten years since The Butterfly Tree started its orphan sponsorship programme in Zambia, to date around 1,000 individual orphans have received a sound basic education. Many pupils have since completed high school, others are attending college, while a number have sought employment.
In the early days it was fairly simple to get to know each individual orphan and give regular feedback to the sponsors, especially as they were all attending Mukuni Basic School. The programme has grown considerably and we now offer sponsorship to orphans in other schools, including N’gandu, Kamwi, N’dele and Mahalulu.
Within a short time we realised that it is not only education that the orphans in these remote villages need. Besides going to school they must have safe water to drink, access to better healthcare, improved housing conditions, and sanitation facilities. Consequently we created a holistic approach to the welfare of these vulnerable children by adding bore holes and latrines in schools, building clinics and providing new methods for malaria prevention, as well as workshops for HIV prevention.
As a result of this approach we have been able to reach out to several thousand children in the Mukuni, Musokotwane, Sekute and Nyawa Chiefdoms. We have built entire new schools in areas where children had never attended school. Virtually every project we do is for the benefit of the orphans.
In September 2012 when HRH The Princess Royal visited our projects at Mukuni Village, at the end of her tour she said ‘working with orphans is not easy, but you seem to have got it right.’
Now as we approach our second decade our aim is to expand into other Chiefdoms and communities that receive little help. We will continue with the orphan sponsorship programme, but due to the enormous amount of time it takes to administer the programme it is hoped that our sponsors will understand that it is not always possible to give regular updates on each individual child.
We are delighted to tell you that we have been able to sustain our ability to run the charity both in the UK and Zambia entirely by volunteers, with the addition of Frank Maiolo who helps with our orphan support programme in the USA. Most of them have been with us since 2006, and thanks to their dedication and commitment these orphans have a much better chance in life.
Water Food Health and Education Progress
2015 has been a year of considerable development for The Butterfly Tree and our rural communities in Zambia, most especially the national launch of the new malaria prevention project. Below are images showing some of this years achievements.
Thank you to everyone who has helped to make these developments possible. Wishing you all a very happy and healthy New Year!
Advancement in Healthcare
Many of you will be enjoying this magical time of the year, in many parts of the world. Christmas is a time for giving and for being with families. Please remember all the children who are not as fortunate as ours, ones who will spend Christmas feeling hungry and no doubt lonely, after losing their parents as a result of disease, such as HIV/AIDS or malaria.
This year we have been able to increase our support to help the fight against these devastating diseases. In November we started distributing the first of the new Vectorcide products in the Mukuni and Sekute Chiefdoms, providing improved protection against malaria. To date over 1,000 households have been coated with Mozzimort, a safe insecticidal paint.
In addition we are using Larvicide granules, in known breeding areas, to prevent larva developing into mosquito. Our aim is to raise funds and awareness in order to distribute these products throughout Zambia.
Other recent improvements in healthcare include a clinic at Muchambile and two women’s shelters at Kasiya and Singwamba, funded by a private donor and The Besom. Over the Christmas period we have engaged school leavers, who were sponsored by The Butterfly Tree, and having been trained as peer educators, to run HIV prevention workshops.
We are having a very productive year thanks to the support of on our going donors, volunteers and fundraisers. Since 2006 The Butterfly Tree has advanced some 30 schools, installed 16 bore holes and developed 10 rural clinics. Thousands of orphans and vulnerable children, throughout the Kazungula and Livingstone Districts, now have access to improved water supplies, feeding programmes, better education and healthcare.
Thank you to everyone for being part of our global following and for helping children in Zambia to have a better future. Wishing you all the very best for Christmas and good health and happiness in the New Year.
Jane Kaye-Bailey and the teams both in Zambia and the UK
Water Food Health Education
In January it will be ten years since I first stepped foot on Zambian soil. Little did I know that the country and its people would play such an important role in my life, that I would gain first hand and often heartbreaking insights into how people in remote areas cope with extreme poverty. This has enabled me to convey to you what is really happening on the ground and to continue our vital work to help these vulnerable people.
We have made tremendous progress in many areas, most especially by adding bore holes to schools, most recently to Siachabuki and Simuka. With the prolonged drought, which has caused considerable food shortages through the Southern Province, bore holes are essential, not only to provide safe drinking water, but also to enable irrigation for school gardens. This year thanks to a generous donation from Jane Keil and her family in Australia, fourteen schools are to receive seeds and fertilizers to develop sustainable feeding programmes.
During my visit we hosted a wonderful group of donors from Attraction Tickets Direct. Their substantial donations have provided funds to expand Nampuyani, Singawamba and Kauwe Schools. The group brought with them vast amounts of school supplies and equipment.
One of the highlights of my trip was to distribute almost 500 football shirts, generously donated by Manchester United and organised by one of JOAC’s volunteers. Every pupil at N’gandu School received a shirt along with other items donated by JOAC. The school development at N’gandu is almost complete with the addition of a 1×3 classroom block, two teachers’ houses and latrines. This was funded by a grant from JOAC Community Works Projects.
Other schools that recently received funding are River View, who were given desks and text books. This school was also chosen as a beneficiary for a new project with our partners ‘School in a Bag’. 100 pupils received school bags containing all their educational needs. Kasiya School has new latrines, a teacher’s house has been restored at Kamwi and a new 1×2 classroom block at N’dele funded by BFSS. We are reaching out to 29 schools in four Chiefdoms.
So much development has taken place these past few months that I am going to write a separate post on our health projects. In the meantime to raise further funds for the projects, we are once again selling charity calendars. The cost is £5 per calendar, plus postage. In addition Manchester United has donated David de Gea’s kit from the pre-season tour, which we are currently auctioning. If you would like to place a bid or buy a calendar please contact email@example.com
Education Is The Key
There are 1.2 million orphans in Zambia, primarily as a result of the HIV and AIDS pandemic. All the work done by The Butterfly Tree in Zambia revolves around the well-being of these vulnerable children. Every school we work in has orphans – Mukuni Village has the highest number with a staggering 600 children, over 50%, losing one or both parents!
In October 2010 I had to deal with one of the most heartbreaking situations I have ever encountered. Baby boys, Elvis and Vincent, were born two months premature, after their mother went into early labour. She died during childbirth with a third baby. The hospital could not help them, so when they were just two weeks old, each weighing less than 3lbs, they were sent home, to the remote village of Kamwi. The Butterfly Tree has since supported these adorable little boys. I am overjoyed to tell you that this month they celebrated their fifth birthday!
Our programme has helped hundreds of orphans, and has enabled them to stay with their friends instead of having to go into orphanages. The first orphan we ever sponsored was Peter Liyungu, who went on to complete high school and is now being sponsored by Teamworks to go to college. Peter and another sponsored orphan, called Charity, recently did their work experience at Mukuni and will shortly qualify as teachers. While Josias is volunteering at N’dele School until he is offered a permanent teaching post.
For us to reach out to more orphans we are streamlining the programme. It will remain the same for every orphan who is currently being sponsored. In future rather than sponsoring individual orphans people can donate towards school fees and uniforms, this way hundreds more children can be given a chance to complete their education.
As always education is the key to overcoming poverty and its related issues. We are very grateful to all our sponsors who donate essential funds towards this programme, the guardians who look after the orphans and the volunteers who oversee the welfare of these very special children.
Prevention Saves Lives
Next month is the start of the rainy season in Zambia and with it brings a higher risk of contracting malaria, the biggest killer of man. Though malaria is prevalent all year round, the next few months are the worst. It is essential that children have maximum protection against malaria. Every 60 seconds a child dies from malaria, 75% are under five in sub-Sahara Africa, including Zambia.
Last season the Mukuni Chiefdom alone reported 488 cases of malaria. The Butterfly Tree is currently raising funds to buy Vectorcide’s safe innovative products. Vectorcide caoting is far superior to the current method of indoor residual spraying, which is harmful, less effective and lasts only for six months.
Working alongside the Ministry of Health, who fully support this new intervention, we aim to reduce the number of new cases of malaria. This initiative will not replace insecticide treated mosquito nets, instead it will add further protection to those most at risk, especially infants and pregnant women. Our first distribution is currently taking place in Mukuni villages thanks to a generous donation from Saga Charitable Trust.
November is also the time for planting. After several months without a drop of rain, the parched African terrain is desperate for water. Communities are hoping for ‘good rains’ – last year the rains were so poor, resulting in most maize crops in the Southern Province perishing.
Good nutrition is essential for early development in children, but when your family is poor there is never enough food to go round. For many families surviving on just one meal a day is the norm. Maize is the staple diet of Zambians, especially those living in rural areas, but it is totally rain dependent. Consequently we are looking at crops that need less water.
To date we have supported some twenty schools to initiate sustainable feeding programmes. Our evaluation has shown that pupils performance and attendance is much improved. When children have to walk several miles to get to school it is comforting to know that food will be available.
In the 21st century no child should go hungry, and yet according to the World Food Programme Organisation there are 795 million hungry people, of which 75% are in rural areas of Africa and Asia. Funds for malaria prevention and for feeding programmes are needed for this season. We are very grateful for any support you can offer, please use this link to make a donation.
Advancements in Malaria and HIV Prevention and Maternity Care
The Butterfly Tree is making great strides advancing health facilities in rural Zambia. In addition to the Health Centre we opened at Mahalulu last year, we have built a clinic at Muchambila and two more women’s shelters at Singwamba and Kasiya thanks to generous donations from The Besom and a private donor. This enables women to have a safe place to stay prior to the onset on labour.
With high prevalences of HIV, TB and Malaria there are not enough rural clinics in Zambia. Many people have to walk 30 miles to seek medical attention, which is no mean feat if you are heavily pregnant, have a high temperature or some disability, especially when the temperature soars to 40 degrees Celsius. Mukuni Health Centre has a catchment in access of 8,000 people, this number could be reduced if there were more health posts in outreach areas.
Our new malaria prevention programme, using Vectorcide products aims to reduce the number of cases of malaria, especially in the under fives. 75% of deaths caused by malaria are this age category in sub-Sahara Africa. Our aim is to replace harmful indoor residual spraying with Mozzimort coating. Mosquito nets are still vital and will work in conjunction with the new products to give maximum protection.
Last year saw an alarming increase of malaria in the Southern Province of Zambia. The rainy season starts in November, therefore we urgently need funds to buy more products and mosquito nets in order to avoid a further increase in malaria. With drug resistance growing, prevention is essential. The first villages to be targeted are Chuunga and Kamwi, in the Mukuni Chiefdom, thanks to generous funding by Saga Charitable Trust.
We continue to provide workshops for HIV prevention, using Meet Mutsa’s successful method of training peer educators, to spread the word amongst school pupils. With the extensive presence of HIV, teenage pregnancies and alcohol problems it is imperative that children learn about the dangers of HIV and AIDS at an early age. Our aim, as always, is to promote good health to give these orphaned and vulnerable children a better chance in life.
Improved Water and Education Facilities
This past few months has seen further development in a number of schools in the Mukuni, Nyawa and Sekute Chiefdoms. New classrooms, teacher’s houses, latrines, a bore hole and school shop have all been constructed thanks to generous funding from a variety of donors.
N’dele Primary School has a new 1×2 classroom block and latrines thanks to generous grant aid from the British and Foreign School Society. World Challenge volunteers from Tring School recently camped at Kamwi School where they helped to construct a school shop, painted classrooms and gave further donations to restore a teacher’s house and build a feeding programme shelter.
Group of volunteers from JOAC Community Works Project are currently working at N’gandu School where a 1×3 classroom block, two teacher’s houses and latrines are being built. Their substantial grant has brought much needed development to N’gandu School, which was built in 1947. N’dele, Kamwi and N’gandu Schools are all in the Mukuni Chiefdom.
Further funding from ATD has paid for the construction of a 1×2 classroom block and latrines at Singwamba, their donation also includes latrines for Kauwe School. These schools are both in the Nyawa Chiefdom where we have also advanced Muchambile and Nampuyani Schools. A bore hole donated by Cayman Island’s Sunrise Rotary Club, Churches of Abbots Leigh and Abbots Wood, Nick Bousliman and other donors has given Bunsunga school children a chance to taste fresh water for the first time.
River View School, in the Sekute Chiefdom, has received support to complete their pre-school. With over 1,000 pupils, the school is continues to enrol more children due to the recently developed town of Kazungula. Donations from St.Paul’s School, Wigan and individuals have been used to buy the new syllabus text books for this school as well as Muchambile and Kamwi. Inner Wheel Club District 6 knitted beautiful blankets, jumpers and hats for the pupils.
Zambia has some of the highest poverty levels in the world. It is essential for these orphaned and vulnerable children to receive a sound education.
Launch of Malaria Prevention Project
I have just returned from a very productive visit to Zambia with the highlight being the launch of our new innovative malaria prevention project. This took place at the Avani Victoria Falls Resort on July 29th and was attended by the Deputy Permanent Secretary, Government Health and Education officials, District Commissioners, Leading Members of the Communities, the Tourism Sector and the Chamber of Commerce. We are very grateful to Avani for donating the use of a conference room.
After my opening address the Deputy Permanent Secretary gave a speech followed by a presentation of the malaria prevention products by Stain Musungaila, The Butterfly Tree member who manages the project in Zambia. This was gratefully received by the Ministries and Heads of the Communities, and was subsequently reported in the national press.
The product details can be found using this link: Presentation – Vectorcide 2015
Malaria remains the number one killer of man. 75% of all deaths occur in children under the age of five in sub-Sahara Africa. Every 60 second a child dies from malaria. With a vaccine yet to be approved by the WHO malaria prevention is essential. According to the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine these advanced products, supplied by Vectorcide UK and manufactured in a cutting edge laboratory in Poland, are far superior to anything else currently available on the global market.
Thanks to Saga Charitable Trust the first shipment has arrived in Zambia and is being distributed in villages in the Mukuni Chiefdom where there is a high prevalence of malaria. Chuunga, Kamwi and Syaflwebafweba reported almost four hundred cases of malaria last year. It is imperative that we get these villages covered with Mozzimort before the onset of the rainy season.
Other donations have come from individuals and Inner Wheel District 6, after The Butterfly Tree was chosen as their international charity of the year for two consecutive years 2013-15. Zambia is a vast country with many areas becoming inaccessible during the rains.
The Ministry of Health, the National Malaria Control Centre, the Zambian Scientific Research Centre and the Environmental Agencies have been instrumental in helping us to get these products into Zambia. It is now hoped that both the Provincial health departments and the private sector will purchase these products to help prevent more loss of life.
We need further funds to reach out to rural communities – donations can be made using our secure on line facility: DONATE
Follow our malaria prevention progress on Facebook
30% Increase in Donations and Grant Aid
2014–15 has been an extremely successful year for The Butterfly Tree, with donations and grant aid increasing by 30%. We gained many new donors and have reached out to several new schools and communities. I am astounded by the continued support from our loyal donors, volunteers and fundraisers, who have generously donated money and free time to help us continue this vital work. The grass root projects, which include education advancements, bore holes and improved healthcare, have also continued to grow. Our exciting new malaria prevention project is shortly to be launched.
Please follow the link to view the full Annual Report, Photos and Accounts: Annual Report 14-15
For the past twelve months we have been working with Vectorcide (a UK company), the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Zambian Malaria Control Centre and the Ministry of Health, to introduce two innovative malaria prevention methods that are perceived to be the most superior products currently available globally. This is a huge opportunity for us and most humbling to know that we have the potential to help save thousands of lives. The first distribution will be going to the Mukuni Chiefdom in July. In addition we received a donation of repellent t-shirts that offer a further form of protection.
Over the years we have gained a sound reputation for transparency and for getting the job done! When in Zambia I drive to all the villages we are supporting. Sometimes it can be hazardous, but this way I am able to report first hand the remakable difference The Butterfly Tree is making. Earlier this year we received a substantial grant to develop N’gandu School, which dates back to 1947, and is in dire need of expansion. Further grant aid enabled us to expand N’dele School, a substantial donation paid for extensive development at Nampuyani School and one for restoration at Manyemuyemu.
We continue to sponsor the education of orphans in several schools. We are extremely grateful for the on going support from our many sponsors, some joining us way back in 2006. Personally I believe one of our greatest achievements is to see former sponsored pupils attending teacher’s training college and other further education establishments. Three of them have returned to Mukuni to do work experience at the school. Others are studying agriculture and engineering, some are volunteering in schools and clinics, while others have sought employment.
Another special education unit has been added to Simango school, making this our fourth one in rural schools. Earlier this year we handed over The Butterfly Tree’s pre-school in Mukuni Village to the mainstream school. The government has finally incorporated pre-schools into their curriculum. In sport, Mukuni football teams, received football kits from York City Football Club.
Health and water issues continue to dominate our work. Besides the prevelance of malaria, which has sadly been on the increase due to the escalation in drug-resistance, we must continue to address HIV, particularly amongst youths. We provide funds for HIV prevention through peer eudcation workshops using ‘Meet Mutsa’s’ successful method. These young peer educators are making substantial progress by spreading awareness of the dangers of HIV and AIDS. Furthermore the CEF goat project, funded by US donors, provides goat’s milk for vulnerable infants and children at risk from malnutrition.
Sometimes I am overcome with emotion when I visit these communities and see the improvements, most recently at the new clinic at Muchambile funded by private donors who have ‘adopted’ the school and village. The health centre at Mahalulu is now fully operational, complete with maternity clinic, women’s shelter, staff houses, bore hole and latrines. The school bore holes are invaluable and have helped to reduce the number of diarrhoeal diseases in children as well as providing irrigation for sustainable school vegetable gardens.
Nine community houses were constructed for widows looking after orphans, some built by UK volunteers. Each year we attract a considerable number of volunteers from all walks of life. This past year we received volunteers and visitors from the UK, Norway, France, New Zealand, Australia, USA and South Africa. Mukuni Village has become a global gathering!
Besides volunteers we attract travel philanthropists and tourists. Our base at Mukuni Village is just seven kilometres from Victoria Falls, a World Heritage Site, where visitors can come and see how just a small donation can make a huge difference.
2006 was when it all began by sponsoring a few orphans and raising funds for a high school. Since then our work has expanded to four Chiefdoms, offering improved water, as well as health and education facilities to thousands of orphans and vulnerable children. This has happened because of the commitment and dedication of our teams of volunteers both in the UK and Zambia. I wish to express my gratitude to fellow Trustees David and Miranda for all their help and advice, and welcome to the board of Trustees, Wendy Callaway, a long-term donor and volunteer of the charity. A special thanks to Ann Sutton for her extensive contribution in administering the charity accounts, to Carolyn for efficiently organising the volunteer programme, to Oscar for his asssitance, and to Emma for helping with the orphan sponsorship and her volunteer work in Zambia. Also my sincere thanks to Frank Maiolo, our US representative, who has promoted and supported the charity since 2008.
I receive some wonderful comments and unnecessary applause for what we have achieved in these rural villages. However, none of it could have been accomplished without the devotion and effort of our amazing team in Zambia: Mupotola Siloka (Secretary & Project Manager), Presley Mulenga (Head of Education), Martin Mushabati (Ground Operations Manager), Rosemany Siloka (Treasurer), Stain Musungaila (Malaria Prevention) and Sibeso Maseke (Environmetal Officer). A special thanks to Chief Mukuni for his counsel, and the local tour operators and hoteliers who support our work.
We will continue to work at grass root level, reaching out to remote areas of need, and with the support of the Ministry of Health we aim is to extend the malaria prevention programme to national level to reduce the number of lives lost and days of absenteeism due to sickness.
My sincere thanks to everyone who has helped to make The Butterfly Tree an established and globally recognised charity. I would personally like to thank every single donor from around the world and apologise for not being able to name everyone. A special thanks to our major donors – the Jersey Oversees Aid Commission, the British and Foreign School Society, Saga Charitable Trust, Just a Drop, ENRC Marketing AG, The Besom, Cunninghams, Attraction Tickets Direct, Black and White Accounting and the Mukuni Village Fund (Australia), not forgetting the Inner Wheel Clubs District 6, who selected The Butterfly Tree, for the past two years, as their International Charity of the Year!