Chikumbuso

Chikumbuso means "Remembrance" our mission statement is to remember those who died (both family and friends), to remember where we came from (a place of poverty and hunger) and to remember to do for others (give back to the community).
May 23, 2013

A Place to Call Home

I am very pleased to announce the Chikumbuso Projects's Off-Site Safe Haven has been opened!  Yay!

This past Friday afternoon with much singing, dancing, laughter and tears, three girls were 'brought home' to live in the Safe Haven.

We have taken in three girls for the time being. Girls that have been with Chikumbuso for several years now and one who is receiving a scholarship for Secondary School.

The girl in secondary school is Tiyankenji.  On Friday, the ladies took very special care in praying for Tiyankenji - they each remembered her mother and their promises to care for Tiyankenji when she died.  They spoke to her about how her grandmother had placed her in 'our hands' to see to her education and how now it is up to her to receive this blessing and grab hold of God's blessing and not let anything get in her way.  There were many tears as each of the ladies shared their bits of advice and love.

Patricia is a single orphan, 15, and in Grade 4.  When she first came to Chikumbuso two years ago,at age 13, she barely knew how to read.  With the help she's been receiving she is reading but will definitely need the additional help that being in this program will provide.

Nyangu is 15 and in Grade 5.  Nyangu struggles and has been kept out of school to watch babies and go find money for the family to eat.  This safehaven is a real life line to Nyangu giving her a hope for the future and the ability to stay in school and focus on her studies. 

Your donations providing for Secondary Education keeps girls just like these three on track and hoping for something more out of life. Thank you so much for making this difference.

Blessings

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Apr 29, 2013

Sylvia and Women's Day

Sylvia
Sylvia

Early in the morning of International Women’s Day, I was sleeping, I just wanted to sleep in.  But then someone began knocking on my door, and I got up to answer it.  I found there was this old, old lady.  She was carrying this big sack on her back like a baby.  I said, “Ah, Sylvia, what are you doing?”

“I’m coming from Mandevu.”

“What were you doing there?  Visiting your relatives?”  It was so early in the morning, I imagined that she must have left there very early to get to Ng’ombe at this time of the morning.

“No, no.  I left early from my house this morning.  I went to buy some groundnuts because I know that I am owing Chikumbuso some money.  Now that my son’s funeral is over, I want to start selling so I can start paying again on my loan.”  Sylvia, like many older Zambians, believes that if she is owing a debt on earth, she won’t be free to die.  At 104, with all she has seen, you can imagine how this grips her.

“So,” I asked her, “how much do you have?  Have you started selling by this time?”

“Yes!  That is why I’ve come!”

I had her scoop out the groundnuts, bit by bit; she looked up at me in the eyes, “Is that enough?”  “No, keep counting.”  She counted until they were all out.  The total price was 10.50 kwacha, with a profit of 1.5 (about $2.10 in total, profit about 30 cents).  She was very pleased and grateful for the money and turned to go.

“No, no, Sylvia, you must stay and have breakfast with me.  It’s International Women’s Day.”  During breakfast we talked about her plans to earn some money for her loan and I shared the story with my children who would easily look down on working so early and so hard for such a meager profit.

After breakfast, she turned to go.  “No, no, Sylvia, you must stay – I will get your clothes washed and pour you a nice bath.”

After we had washed the clothes and ironed them and she finished her bath, she turned to go.  “No, no, Sylvia, the day isn’t over yet.  You must stay for tea.”

By the time Sylvia went home she was very happy – she’d eaten three meals, sold all her groundnuts and her clothes were nicely ironed, folded and back on her back in the big sack wrapped with chitenge – these are clothes that she will sell to pay back her loan and now that they are clean and ironed, they will be much more likely to sell.

She was happy, but I found I was even more happy.  Sylvia is a very old woman and her last child was just buried and yet, she was up very early in the morning, out and about, trying to make just a little profit to get herself going again.  And not only that, all the time she was here, she was smiling, laughing, even giving us a small dance – I thought, “Would I have that courage going through all these problems?  I kept thinking of her – what if she were my own umbuya (grandmother) and I wondered at her courage when she’s all alone.”

This grandmother represents all of the grandmothers we have and the struggles they go through on a daily basis. Consider blessing a grandmother with a stove, it will make a world of difference in her life.

Mar 4, 2013

International Women's Day Zambia

Since its birth in the socialist movement, International Women's Day has grown to become a global day of recognition and celebration across developed and developing countries alike. For decades, IWD has grown from strength to strength annually. Yet despite all the efforts and growth made since the 1900's we are aware that many women worldwide still struggle and need our help and encouragement as they find themselves in unnavigable circumstances. 

This year Chikumbuso women would like to, once again, visit the Prison in Lusaka to bring the women there sanitation packets, basins and soap. It is a time for the women of Chikumbuso to give back to those in need as well as a time of fellowship for the women detained behind bars. 

Please help us to do this again this year with your donation to Global Giving. It is through your generosity that we can be your hands and feet in Lusaka Prison.

If you would like to read more about the state of Zambia's prisons please go to: www.hrw.org/news/2010/04/27/zambia-prison-conditions-endanger-inmates

Thank you for your help.

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