Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe

by Action Change (Formerly GVI Trust)
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe
Help Feed Hungry Children in Zimbabwe

Dear Supporters, 

Zimbabwe doesn’t begin with the last letter of the alphabet for nothing.  We feature last on the list of countries of the world and if we carry on as we are, we’ll probably drop off it altogether. 

But, please, that’s no reason to forget us. 

It is not the fault of the people of this country that we are in this mess, it is entirely due to the total neglect by the government for the past thirty-six years.  Thanks to a ruinous agricultural policy, we haven’t been able to feed ourselves for decades but we have muddled through by importing from our neighbours.  But this year is different and this winter will be far, far worse. The last “rainy” season barely happened, with minor falls in  February and March - too little and too late for the maize crop (the staple diet in this part of Africa) that should be planted in November/December.

The drought has affected the whole of southern Africa so there will be almost no imports this year – and what does come in will, as usual, be handed out to the party faithful in Mashonaland.  People here, in Matabeleland (the most arid area of the country at the best of times), have no maize stored away and it won’t be long before they are facing starvation – with no help in sight from their government.

Thanks to the very generous donations we have received so far this year, we are still managing to feed over 270 day scholars at Marula Junior School – every lunchtime for five days a week during term time.  Up to now, we have been able to provide them with mealie meal (porridge made from maize) which is still available – at a price – plus beans, soy chunks, cabbage, tomatoes and a soup.  I was at the school two days ago and attach photographs of some of the very happy recipients.  For most of these children, this is the only proper, balanced meal they will have in the day – and many of them have to walk miles to school and back on an empty stomach.

That’s the thing about this country, and you can see it from the photographs:  no matter how tough things are, the people remain amazingly cheerful and friendly.  But right now they are being pushed to their limits – and this year there will be no relief to their suffering.

We are so grateful for the help that you have given us in the past.  If you can spare a little more, you will have the satisfaction of knowing that you will be saving lives.  Many of these children are HIV positive or actually have AIDS – so once their immune system is compromised through hunger – they are in danger of succumbing to the disease.  

Many thanks from the children at Marula Junior School for your kindness.

With Gratitude, 

Bookey

 

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Dear Supporter, 

“More than quarter of the population face food shortages as Zimbabwe hit by severe drought, with cattle dying and crops destroyed” The Guardian,  5 February 2016)

First, a very big thank you to all the generous donors who have supported our feeding programme at Marula Junior School over the months since the project has been active. 

The past few years have been difficult, but nothing compares to what we are facing now.  In February, the President declared a state of disaster in rural areas. Our district is one of the worst affected.  

As there are no employment opportunities, the people here rely on growing their own crops, which are generally meagre as we receive little rainfall.   Our yearly average is 17 inches – this year we have had barely 6 inches, and it is already the end of the “rainy” season.  So there will be no maize this year and very little hope any imported food reaching outlying areas.

Of our 270 plus day scholars, many are AIDS orphans, living with relatives or with only slightly older siblings, all of whom are unemployed.  The only way we can feed them is to keep raising funds to buy them mealie meal, plus “relish” consisting of soy chunks, tomato, cabbage and a soup mix.   This enables us to give these children, most of them in the 5 – 10 age group, lunch every day during the term time.

Water is, of course, another huge problem.  This has been somewhat alleviated, though, by our being able to have the bush pump at the school well fixed recently thanks to overseas donors.  This water is not suitable for drinking or cooking but it can be used for everything else – and the children are kept busy pumping and carrying the water back to the school building in buckets. 

Our next project is to buy a storage tank, but first priority is food, food, food – enough to tide the children over until next year when we hope and pray that the rains will come.

With Gratitude, 

GVI Charitable Trust

Thanks for the lunch!
Thanks for the lunch!

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Dear Supporter, 

In November, just before Marula School broke up for their summer holiday and Christmas break, the children got together to write the following letter to you to thank you for helping them in 2015. 

We would like to thank you very much for the money you gave us towards buying relish (meant) for the feeding of day scholars. 

Your donation came at a time when our parents had no relish to offer from our homes. We can now eat our lunch at our school and all thanks to you. 

May you find it in your heart to continue the good gesture. 

I have also shared the letter as the picture attached to this report. 

From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for helping us to help the children at Marula School. As we mentioned in our last report, the drought is taking its toll and times are incredibly tough for everyone. 

We hope that you have a wonderful festive season and that the new year brings nothing but good things for you!

With Gratitude, 

GVI Charitable Trust

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Dear Supporter, 

Times are very tough here in Zimbabwe. The drought continues and people are suffering. Crops are failing because it is too hot and the rains are scarce, and as the crops fail people's source of food are depleting. On top of this, there is no indication that the government has the means or the desire to help its people. It all comes down to you and your donations. 

Thankfully, our feeding program here at Marula school has been able to continue for another few months. With your donations, we are able to supply the ingredients for the cooks to make a relish that is served over the mealie meal porridge, a staple food here in Zimbabwe.

Without this food, some of the 270 students here would go all day before getting a meal in the evening. That is a long time to go without food for a young child who has walked a substantial distance to attend school and then expected to concentrate all day long.

Many of the students are severely malnourished and there is no end in sight with the drought continuing, the economy continuing its downward spiral with hyperinflation the order of the day and the political situation worsening. 

Please consider donating a few extra dollars to help us feed the children at Marula!

With Gratitude, 

GVI Charitable Trust

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Pap, a southern Africa staple food
Pap, a southern Africa staple food

Dear Supporter,

It is school holidays here in Zimbabwe now, so things at the school are very quiet, but that does not mean that our work stops. It is our aim to be able to supply food to our scholars throughout the school holidays. 

Up to now, the school has been asking parents to donate the money for lunch - but quite simply, most are unable to manage it as they are not employed. The drought this year is also a killer, which adds pressure to families. The crops have failed and we are having a hot, dry winter which does not bode well for the next season.  This means that the hunger has really started to take hold in the area and parents simply don’t have the resources to supply money for children’s lunches.

Here at Marula School we presently have 243 day scholars, all of whom should be receiving a school lunch regardless of if their parents can pay or not. This lunch consists of a bowl of pap, which is a mealie meal porridge. Mealie meal is a staple food in southern Africa. It is crushed maize meal that is cooked with water and served very thick and stodgy and used as a base for serving stews and relishes. To go with this, we provide a relish made from cabbage, soy mince, sugar beans, tomatoes and onions.

National Foods here in Bulawayo have been donating the mealie meal for the past few months and we hope they will continue doing so going forward so that we can continue using your donations to buy the ingredients for the relish. 

We thank you for your kind support.

Best Wishes, 

GVI Charitable Trust

Lunch time at Marula School
Lunch time at Marula School
Speech day on the last day of term
Speech day on the last day of term

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Organization Information

Action Change (Formerly GVI Trust)

Location: London - United Kingdom
Website:
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Project Leader:
Tyrone Bennett
London, London United Kingdom
$213,048 raised of $250,000 goal
 
6,891 donations
$36,952 to go
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