ZRSDP has been involved in numerous smaller projects helping out where we can. Here are some of the areas we’ve been involved in
Seeds for sustainability 2010
After visiting Makowe School in 2009, it was evident that the community was starving. Sharing all they had, the community was surviving only on only one small meal a day of maize meal, roots and leaves. As a result children were unable to attend school and were spending their time foraging for food. Immediately Justin, Nikki and our local partner Kathy sourced maize for the community to ensure they had enough to eat until that year’s harvest. As an act of gratitude the community post harvest gave back more food to the local hospital!
ZRSDP set about to ensure that this wouldn’t happen again to the community and affect the success of our project in Makowe. It was evident that there was little support for subsistence farming and communities lacked knowledge as to how to produce maximum yields. Nikki got in touch with a local organization called Foundation For Farming (www.foundationsforfarming.org) who run farming workshops. In October 2009, they were taught soil science and farm management to maximize productivity of subsistence farming .The training lasted 3 days; with seeds, fertilizer and funding provided by ZRSDP. Over 300 farmers attended from Makowe and surrounding districts, 3 times the number anticipated. They are expected to improve annual yields to ensure a constant supply of food for both parents and children – with excess produce being sold as an income. Children can now spend less time foraging for food and more time at school.
Whitewater Primary School 2009
Whitewater Primary School is based in South West Zimbabwe. It has faced a number of challenges over the last year including not only a lack of textbooks for children but also supporting texts for teachers. The ZRSDP team worked with Family Impact, a charity working with a network of schools near Bulawayo, to enable the purchase of Mathematics, Ndebele and English textbooks. Our £2000 donation bought enough textbooks for 5 year groups enabling these core subjects to be taught more effectively.
Goredema School 2008
ZRSDP helped by donating £1,000 worth of essential school books to Gordema Primary School.
Southern Africa Famine Appeal 2002
In 2002 Southern Africa was the focus of an international aid effort, where 14 million people face starvation. Zimbabwe was one of the countries hardest hit by the famine and this, in tandem with the AIDS epidemic, meant that many millions of people were in dire need of help and it was estimated that up to half of Zimbabwe’s population could perish in the famine.
ZRSDP made an immediate £250 donation to the Disasters Emergency Committee. What sense in building classrooms unless there are children to fill them?
Marirangwe Secondary School (1999 – 2001)
Marirangwe Secondary School is located about 40 miles north of Zimbabwe’s capital Harare. It is situated within the Musana communal lands where subsistence farming is a way of life for most families who live here. Consequently, local incomes are very low and many children miss out on the opportunity for an education. The school has 400 pupils aged 12-16, with eight classes of approximately 50 pupils each and has no electricity and no running water. Marirangwe Secondary Schools is desperately under-funded and items such as furniture and textbooks are in very short supply. For example, textbooks in most subjects are limited to two or three per class.
ZRSDP has worked extensively with Marirangwe and the Headmaster, Mr Arnott, to provide textbooks for maths, science and geography. In these subjects, the ratio is now one textbook for every two children.
Other donations to Marirangwe have included desks, chairs and sports equipment.