The Happy Africa Foundation (THAF) will renovate an existing classroom and build a new classroom block at the Zambezi Sawmills Community School in Livingstone, Zambia. This school suffers from overcrowding and lack of economic support, and is also located in one of the poorest and most underdeveloped neighborhoods in Livingstone. The completion of the school will provide a better learning environment for its 370 students, and will also help to accommodate more underprivileged children!
Since Zambezi Sawmills is a community school, it does not receive government funding and must rely on outside donations. This prevents the school from being financially stable. The school serves students in grades 1-7, but only consists of 5 classrooms. This means that some grades can only attend school for a few hours a day. Also, the overcrowding in classrooms makes it very difficult for the teachers to manage their students and maintain a high-quality learning environment.
Renovating and completing the school will change the way the community views the education of their children. It will improve the overall learning environment and encourage parents and residents to take a more active role in school life. The new classroom block will increase the school's capacity to accommodate more students and will decrease overcrowding. Additionally, research shows that investments in school buildings help to improve teacher motivation, ultimately benefiting the students.
The new classroom block will provide more children with the opportunity to attend school and help offset the likelihood that they fall prey to the socioeconomic hardships prevalent in the community. Also, by increasing the school size, Zambezi Sawmills will be able to accommodate grades 8 and 9. This will allow the school to attain a basic school status and therefore qualify for government funding. Long term, this will help the school become more self-sufficient and economically sustainable.