The United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 4 states: ‘Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all‘ and yet, according to the UN, sub-Sahara Africa still has some of the lowest participation rates in early childhood and primary education.
I frequently find rural children in Zambia not attending school. The reasons being the lack of schools and trained teachers, distances to access education, and high level of poverty. My belief is ‘that every child has a right to education’ – the charity’s main aim is to advance the educational facilities in rural areas and to support orphans and vulnerable children with equal opportunities for boys and girls.
The Butterfly Tree is the biggest contributor to education in the entire Kazungula District. Three more projects are almost complete: Kawewa Primary School will shortly be upgraded with a substantial grant from the BFSS. River View has an additional classroom block thanks to Nick Bousliman, and a private donor has generously funded an entire new school at Muyunda.
Last year I was informed that 280 pupils, from villages surrounding the town of Kazungula, were not attending school. This area is at the border to Botswana and has hundreds of truck drivers passing through every week. Consequently there is a high prevalence of HIV.
After visiting the area in March I was determined to find a solution for the 280 children, and no doubt the many more undiscovered. Therefore, my proposal was to construct an entire new school as nearby River View, with 1,500 pupils, is full. I am delighted to say that The Hilary and Neil Murphy Foundation has donated significant funds for a classroom block, desks and latrines, in addition to funding two boarding shelters to enable outreach pupils to attend River View School.
Sadly, the food crisis, continues to cause much distress. Thanks to the incredible response to our appeal we have distributed over 5,000 bags of roller meal to help approximately 20,000 people. Heartbreaking stories have emerged, that reduce us all to tears, most especially about an old man in Nyawa, who recently had his first proper meal in two months.
After hearing that we were distributing maize at Muyunda, the old man walked there from Kadanda village, but found nothing left. He then walked to Singwamba and luckily, a few bags remained. To Muyunda from his home 20km…to Singwamba…16km and back home…8km. A staggering 44km or 27 miles!!!
To continue distributing food to orphans and vulnerable people we need more donations. Your support is highly appreciated as you will see from this message: ‘The headmen for Bunsanga send you a thundrous appreciation of roller meal given to their vulnerable people and for school children.’
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