30 November 2016

We started our day visiting Kalembe Basic School some 6 miles deep in the tribal area and on their last day of term prior to the school holidays. The deputy headmistress briefed on the progress of our seven orphans who attend from outlying villages. I say outlying which in Mary Banda’s case (aged 10), is a kilometre away as a case in point. Others are much further away. We gave the school two full team sports strips for football and some miscellaneous sports goods. This is a very go ahead school all down to the headmaster who

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The vision at Kalembe school.

on our visit was in Chipata trying to raise funds to finish off two more classrooms the parents had built!! I looked at some marked work the grade 8 children had been doing for their exams and must say it was impressive considering the limited resources available and teacher numbers, the ratio being one teacher to a hundred children.

I had been asked by HANDS AROUND THE WORLD to visit their skills centre and advise on the future development of their project. Further, the caretaker/carpenter was making some shelves for the house which needed collecting. Michael is going to spend a morning next week giving the carpenter some much needed advice on general management, tidying up the centre and to simply give Wilson, who is a really good man, some encouragement.

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Michael trying to sort out the shower.

The knitting machines that are, at this time in a container on the high seas, which we are donating to HATW will be used in the sewing machine section when they arrive. In due course it is hoped our orphan families will benefit from our supporting the project. The afternoon was spent in town buying new shower parts and and domestic shopping! No mains water tonight so a bucket wash rather than the rain!

Today, Thursday, was the first run to see our orphan families in the west of our patch. I’m pleased to report the Chester tribe of Tamala, Finish and Freda are in excellent health. We had to wait a while for young Finish to run to the fields to collect Mother and Tamala as everyone is planting like mad now the rains have broken. While waiting I, along with three little ones and Michael took a hike up a stone outcrop called a Kopje as Michael is on a serious knowledge introduction to fauna, flora and wild things that explode into life once the rains break. He has met his first Zambian black scorpion, several varieties of lizards, flying ants, how to trap cicadas and wild flowers that spring into instant bloom at the first drop of serious rain. We then visited the proposed area to site well seven and from the photos you will see the dire need for a well. This will be done next year as the donor wishes to see the well being drilled and will fly out specially.

In this area we have two orphan families, one being the Carstairs who sponsor Peter, Rachael, Henry, Alex and Raphael. They are looked after by a very aged granny who is simply amazing and always so cheerful. Again all in good order. In the same village we have James and his sister Violet who are sponsored by Phil Little. All received a ration of food, some clothes and little toys. In the toy pack is a ball that glitters and bounces amazingly – you have seen nothing like the amazement on their faces. Our final call was to see Stanley who is sponsored by Debs Wilton. A bright if terribly shy lad but who is doing well at Myzangulu school. We have been back home an hour and in that time the water has come back on having been off since yesterday and the mains power went off and came back on ten minutes later. Can you just imagine the good folk of Crowthorne coping, with humour, at such a state of affairs? Goodnight.

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