Report Fall 2014

After the successful start of the project it is time to give more details about what's going on and about some very happy pupils..

Gruppenbild der geförderten Kinder

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some of our supported pupils and a teacher (left)

Support for 20 pupils

One Zambian school year is divided into three terms, starting in January. So when we started our support of 20 pupils in May, the second term had just begun. We had to keep in mind that the project is quite new and we cannot yet estimate how much support we will receive in the future. This is why the Development Department (in cooperation with the school staff at St. Mary's) granted ten pupils each from grades 7 and 9 the support for the remainder of the year to begin with.
Those grades 7 and 9 are special because of the end-of-year-examinations. Many pupils are unable to afford the exam fees due at the beginning of the year or else find out later that they don't have money left for terms 2 or 3. They usually drop out of school without any degree. Others are more likely, with the pressure of the exams, to give in to their familiy or guardians who want them to skip school in order to work to generate an income. Agnes Simolooka from the Development Department compares these two years with bridges that need crossing. If you can help the pupils to get across that means a great step towards a complete and successful education.
For those 20 young people we the fees for the remaining two terms. In some cases it was necessary to settle debts they had for not being able to pay for the first term of the year. School uniforms and utilities had of course already been bought and the examination fee had been payed at the start of the year. The pupils and their families are aware that this support is limited to the ongoing year and that they are required to use the time to raise money for the next year on their own again. They have agreed and are very happy about our help.

We have some detailed information about some of the pupils available here.

Donations

Apart from individual donations, we have collected money at weddings andprayers at the student parish in Aachen. Further we have received donations from student parishes from all over Germany. An overwhelming amount of EUR 2000 has been given to us by people from Anne-Frank-school in Düren and they are going to continue this support for the next two years. Currently we have collected EUR 6075.

People in Zambia are making efforts to this end, too. Word about the project is spreading using the slogan Sharing the little we have focusing on the participation of young people and university students. Maybe some similar projects will be initiated in other areas of Zambia.

Ideas for the next years

Since we started our support in the middle of the year, the amount of money spent is lower than it will be once we support pupils for an entire year, including uniforms and books. Right now there is rather a lot more money available than the EUR 420 we used, so we have some ideas about how to tackle the next years.

  • >:+ Increasing the number of supported pupils from grades 7 and 9. There is also the possibility of including more schools than just St. Mary's.
  • >:+ Extending the support to include grade 12. Year 12 is the last year in Zambian schools. Graduates are eligible for study at universities. Basic schools like St. Mary's just covers grades 1-9, so pupils wanting to continue have to go to Monze High, for example. However for those last years, school fees are very high (cf. our table) and for the final exam, of course, a fee is due. Therefore, as well as supporting grades 7 and 9, it seems reasonable to have a kind of scholarship for pupils who finish grade 9 and want to continue.