We should not let the old expression "out of sight, out of mind" gives us excuse to forget our fellow women.
Women in African prisons face overcrowded and unsanitary conditions conducive to poor health and the spread of infectious disease . Daily these women prisoners are confronted with unique challenges–related to menstruation; pregnancy and childbirth. There are no special needs given to female prisoners and sanitary wear is not provided. Imagine yourself in the same situation.
The Chikumbuso Project has made sanitary packets for women part of our Skills Training for At Risk Youth (STARY) program. Twenty young women and men learn to make these bags and pads as part of their year long training in tailoring. Through this program they learn not only the skill of tailoring but also the blessings of giving back to the community. Our goal is to give to women and girls in prison a sanitary packet, soap, underwear, and wash basin. Helping the Zambian prison system care for those incarcerated.
We can not do it with out your help. Please give to this needy cause enabling those who are "out of sight" to be seen again.
From all of us at Chikumbuso
Violette Zhu spent her summer volunteering with Chikumbuso through her scholarship program at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. Below is her electronic postcard from her time with Chikumbuso.
Seven weeks ago, Chikumbuso became a zoo. We have bright butterflies and soaring birds, giant lizards and cheerful fish. Everywhere you look there are animals, both familiar and exotic. Children beam and dance as our collection of critters grows. But don’t worry, the zoo is perfectly safe, and here’s why!While I have been here, I have facilitated a school-wide mural project, among other things. Every week, a different grade contributes another share of the animal kingdom to the formerly bare basketball wall as they learn about the animals of Zambia in class. Though formally I’m leading the project, in practice I’m following the direction of the students, since they are the ones who boss me around and tell me when we need to get more paint, or where there are still white spots to fill in. To be honest, I generally just teach them how to use the rollers, tell them where not to paint, and keep them from falling off of the improvised tire-ladders that they use to reach the higher spots on the wall. The children are creative, resourceful, talented, and sometimes mischievous. While I marvel at their artistic talent, I’m even prouder of their ability to work together to achieve a bigger goal.Chikumbuso certainly teaches these orphans facts and figures, but we also create leaders with big dreams to give back to the community. “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I ask, and I get a myriad of responses. “A doctor, a lawyer, a pilot, a movie star, an entrepreneur!” Some wise ones readily admit that they don’t yet know, and to me, that’s even more amazing. For these kids, the world is full of possibility, for Chikumbuso has given them the opportunity to explore a realm outside of the slum in which they live.I came to Chikumbuso nearly two months ago not knowing what to expect, and in one week, I will leave feeling the same way. I don’t have this place figured out, and I don’t think anyone ever will. There is a certain magic, a sense of hope, that is impossible to explain without experiencing it in person. All I know is that Chikumbuso is a special sanctuary that I will always regard as a second home.Please help support a project that is loved by the 400+ widows, orphans, single mothers, and at-risk youth that it has touched by donating towards the organization, sponsoring a child, buying a bag, and/or filling out the following survey, which I created to help the widows get feedback on customer handbag design preferences (the proceeds from bag sales help keep the school operating)! Thank you!https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/NMHH9DQ
As the end of summer approaches here in the Northern Hemisphere we begin to think of the winter days ahead. What will we need to keep us warm? How will we pay the fuel bills? Do all the kids have boots, mittens, and hats? These are all questions we ask before the first snow storm surprises us.
In Zambia the winters get colder than you would imagine. In Ng'ombe where Chikumbuso is located many of the homes are made of cement block which holds the cold through the winter months. Many living in this slum are too poor to repair broken windows, cracked walls, and leaky roofs. One way we, at Chikumbuso, try to help is by providing all of our students with blankets for them to take home and share with their families. This gift of a $25 blanket makes a world of difference for our children as they fight off the cold of winter. Each blanket given is often shared by two or three children.
Please, as you buy your winter supply of warm clothes and blankets remember to reach out and share with other children who do not have the luxury of heated rooms and comfortable beds to keep them warm at night. One warm blanket will warm the lives of several children.