I visited Monze at the end of May and early June this year along with one of our Trustees – Maggie Hickland, her first trip to visit the school. It was the first trip out to any of the HATW projects since lockdown in March 2020. It felt like there was a great deal to see and do. It was a delight to see the children once again and to see how much they have all grown and changed in the past two years. We met with staff at the project and the management team to talk through issues and meet children who are sponsored. We also visited several local schools and spent time understanding challenges and benefits to how they are supported.
One of the main changes that had taken place in August 2021, was a new President was elected in Zambia - Hakainde Hichilema. He is from the Southern Province, where the Pizz school is situated and was very much elected by the people for positive change in Zambia. One of his big pledges is to reform education for all children and to ensure that barriers such as school fees are no longer stopping children from getting an education. He has announced free education for all. As with all change, this takes time and so there is a big recruitment drive in Zambia to recruit a further 30,000 new teachers. Over 100,000 teachers have applied for these roles.
With all these changes, we had meetings with the Ministry of Education and wanted to understand what this would mean for Pizz school. The Ministry of Education were incredibly positive about the changes and what help, and support would be available going forward from the Government for schools such as Pizz. We discussed this with the local team, parents, and members of the community to understand their thoughts. HATW is currently looking into all these options with the local team in Zambia. At present, all costs such as salaries, running costs, books, uniforms for sponsored children etc are paid for by HATW as the Pizz school is listed as a private school. We are keen to secure local support and ensure the sustainability of the school going forward for the children and local community.
Lots to investigate for the future to ensure that the school will continue to benefit the 600+ children who are currently there as well as all the pupils who will join the school in the years to come.
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