Outreach Programs

Muzuzika Orphans and Vulnerable Children Association

MOVCA first received support from ZOA in 2004 to assist the association establish a piggery. Proceeds from this enterprise aimed at helping over 400 orphaned and other vulnerable children from the surrounding villages with school supplies and other school related needs, medical and nutritional requirements. In 2006, ZOA provided support for additional equipment for the piggery.

This initiative provides an unique example of how human resources can be mobilized to respond to the impact of HIV/AIDS. About 500 retired persons in this remote part of the province, with links to others from the area residing in urban centres, came together to start a facility for the orphaned and other vulnerable children. The idea was to provide shelter, education by building a community school, nutrition and access to health care. In addition to the pig business, the association grows maize, rice, beans and groundnuts on the land given by the local chief, to meet the children’s nutritional needs.

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Pentecostal Global Outreach Orphanage Centre, Central Province

In 2005 ZOA provided seed capital to this center, run by the Pentecostal Outreach church, to assist it purchase a hammer mill. Based on a needs assessment of the surrounding area, the church had identified maize milling as an effective means to a viable enterprise that would help it raise enough income to assist children meet their school needs, as well some of the needs in the foster homes. The center runs a community school for about 350 children in the Ilala township of Mkushi. In 2006, ZOA supported the church further with a grant to enable it cover unexpected high power installation charges by the Zambia Electricity Supply Company (ZESCO).

This project represents partnerships on many fronts: first, the project was brought to the attention of ZOA by a young woman of Zambian extraction who spent six months working in Mkushi as a volunteer. She also brought ZOA to the center’s attention; second, a church in Annandale, Virginia is supporting some staff at the center while ZOA’s contributions go to the children; third, the Zambia Relief and Development Foundation assisted the center to develop the proposal to ZOA and has been assisting the center in its implementation.

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Chivuna Orphans Project , Southern Province

Located in a remote part of the Southern Province, this is a project of the Chivuna Catholic Church and was initiated by the Parish Council, whose membership includes lay parishioners, to care for orphans and other vulnerable children. By 2006 when it turned to ZOA for assistance, the project was reaching 150 children. It came to ZOA for seed capital as it sought ways to sustain the project. After a market, the Council decided on a poultry project. With proceeds from the activity, the project hopes to meet the children’s school and other needs on a more sustainable basis.

Unused funds would be put into the revolving fund that can be drawn upon to meet unexpected needs and may be invested into other enterprises as the Council may decide. The Council see this as a way to help the project move toward sustainability of the project and support to the children. Self-monitoring has been put in place primarily involving bi

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Limulunga and Namushakende Infant at Risk for Malnutrition Program, Western Province

In February 2007 a ZOA member from the United States visited some ZOA supported projects, among them St. Mary’s. She was impressed about the activities there and enthusiastic about the growth of the enterprise, initiated by the school, with ZOA’s help, in 2001. Then, the school had identified a maize grinding activity as the most desired in the area around the school. ZOA had assisted with the purchase of a grinding mill and a maize huller. Proceeds assisted orphaned boys at the school, then just under 40% of the student population. By 2006, the school had acquired two additional machines, one out of proceeds from the project, and had expanded the space for the machines and built a shelter for the users, extensions that ZOA supported in 2004. The ZOA visitor observed many activities going on and many end-users waiting for their turn to be serviced. She noted that the school had acquired an oil pressing machine, fed by sunflower seed from the school gardens. In 2006, ZOA provided an additional grant to replace some of the worn out equipment. The visiting ZOA member judged this as an active and potentially growing enterprise, meeting the school requirements of the orphaned children and others from very poor families.

The school benefited in other ways such as improved library facilities. It purchased the necessary books, earmarked for the orphans and other vulnerable children, but in reality other children also accessing them. Zambia Orphans of AIDS has been encouraged by this project. It seems to be running profitably enough to meet its objectives of providing assistance to orphaned children, and has broadened its support to include other vulnerable children from very poor families; it has helped the school generally in some ways, and equally important it is meeting the needs of the nearby communities, in particular lessening the burden of labor for women from the surrounding villages who would otherwise grind the maize by hand.

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Justice for Women and Orphans Project, Copperbelt Province

Located in a remote part of the Southern Province, this is a project of the Chivuna Catholic Church and was initiated by the Parish Council, whose membership includes lay parishioners, to care for orphans and other vulnerable children. By 2006 when it turned to ZOA for assistance, the project was reaching 150 children. It came to ZOA for seed capital as it sought ways to sustain the project. After a market, the Council decided on a poultry project. With proceeds from the activity, the project hopes to meet the children’s school and other needs on a more sustainable basis. Unused funds would be put into the revolving fund that can be drawn upon to meet unexpected needs and may be invested into other enterprises as the Council may decide. The Council see this as a way to help the project move toward sustainability of the project and support to the children. Self-monitoring has been put in place primarily involving bi monthly budget setting up and implementation monitoring and evaluation. Initiated in Limulunga, the program provides a health clinic and infant formula for orphans and other vulnerable children, aged two weeks to three years. Children who benefit from this service would otherwise be faced with possibilities of malnutrition because they had been orphaned, their mothers were suffering from breast infections and are unable to breast feed, their mothers were HIV infected and demonstrating clinical signs of the disease, their guardians were too poor to provide the basic food they require, or the infants were themselves demonstrating clinical signs of HIV/AIDS. Guardians appreciate the service, some walking up to 8 hours with children on their backs to reach the clinic.

In 2004, the Bishop encouraged the Sisters of Holy Spirit and Mary Immaculate who were running the program to extend it to Namushakende, farther inland and poorer than Limulunga.

Zambia Orphans of AIDS first supported the program in 2005 when the Sisters responded to the Bishop’s request. Subsequently, while they continued to care for the children in Limulunga, the sisters put time into establishing the service in Namushakende, the Sister responsible visiting from Limulunga every two weeks. By August, 2005 the program was well established in Namushakende: “it is exciting to finally see the programme in Namushakende begin.”

Two retired Zambian registered nurses and the site coordinator of home based care run the program

In 2006 ZOA assisted with the same amount as it had done in 2005. Unfortunately due to limited funds the program was forced to cut back on the high protein porridge it used to provide for the children.

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Justice for Women and Orphans Project, Copperbelt Province

This non-governmental organization was established to sensitize widows and orphans on their basic human rights; and to advocate for legal reform to protect, promote and safeguard the rights of widows and orphans in Zambia. The project has support groups in Monze, Kafue, Kabwe and Chingola. In 2006 it sought help from ZOA, who agreed to assist the Chingola group with funds to rear 200 boiler chickens. The money raised from this venture will be used for basic needs such as food, medicines, and school requisites for the orphans.

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Pilot workshops on Loss & Grieving for children & their care givers, Western Province

In 2005 and repeated in 2006, ZOA supported a project in Limulunga, Western Province on Loss and Grief. The project has targeted children and their care givers: to help children understand and accept death; and help equip guardians with skills for dealing with the loss themselves but more important how to assist the children under their care accept and cope with the loss through grieving. This has been done through a series of workshops and in collaboration with Women’s Global Connection of San Antonio, Texas, USA, who trained three local facilitators. 2005 witnessed some preparatory work involving translations of some training material into the local language—Lozi, and running some workshops. Training materials from this workshop were translated into Lozi and more workshops were organized in 2006.

The need for psychosocial help was identified by the Sisters of the Holy Spirit as they dealt with orphans and their care-givers on a daily basis. The leading psychiatrists in Zambia was consulted by ZOA Z regarding the benefits of such an activity. The psychiatrist encouraged ZOA to support it, emphasizing need to monitor it closely with a view to spreading it to other provinces within our network. Accordingly ZOA plans to share the experiences from these workshops and their impacts on the communities with others in the network, especially those running Homes for orphaned children.

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Limulunga Project of Hope, Weastern Province

Zambia Orphans of AIDS first supported this project, coordinated by Sr Rose McHugh of the Sisters of the Holy Spirit, in 2001. The project later received two additional grants. The Limulunga Project of Hope is part of the extensive work of the Diocese of Mongu, in HIV and AIDS and in poverty reduction, and includes the Limulunga and Namushakende Infant at Risk for Malnutrition Program, run by the same sisters and Pilot workshops on Loss and Grieving for orphans and their care-givers. Sister McHugh identified the latter to assist the orphans that under her care. ZOA supported these two projects in 2006, benefiting also children cared for under the Project of Hope.

The Limulunga Project of Hope focuses on assisting with the children’s nutritional and educational needs. It runs a pre-school for children three to six years old after which it arranges for them to get into the local primary school, meeting their school needs while it continues to provide them with meals. In addition to the children who attend the pre-school, others from the neighbourhood join the school-going children every morning to receive breakfast that the project provides. Children are also provided with lunch. But it is breakfast that has remained the favourite meal: “The big hit this year is the breakfast program. It consists of a scone and a big glass of milk…. Believe me everyone is on time. They just love the glass of milk and already I can see they have improved nutritionally”, Sr. Rose wrote.

The first grant ZOA gave contributed to the building of two Roundvalls where the pre-school is held. Two years later it assisted with a vegetable garden that helps children meet their nutritional needs; and later to the poultry project to feed the children and whenever there are surpluses to raise a little income to help buy school supplies. Moreover, ZOA regularly contributed to the fees of some of the girls the project supports in High school and who in turn either help with their families or with the pre- school.

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Kwasha Mukwenu, Lusaka Province

Kwasha Mukwenu is a grassroots group of about 20 women volunteers. It is located in one of the poorest compounds on the outskirts of Lusaka, and aims to provide schooling, food and medical assistance to over 2000 orphans, who are either in foster homes or in orphan/elderly grandmother- headed households. The women get support from many well wishers within and outside Lusaka. But to sustain their efforts, the women raise most of their income through income-generating activities. The main activities the group engages in are tie and dye, and baking, although in 2005 the latter activity was not as productive as it had been in the previous two years. Zambia Orphans of AIDS had provided seed capital for the purchase of stoves in 2002. During this same year, ZOA had mobilized funds from the Rotary Club of Cambridge-Galt, Canada to support Kwasha Mukwenu’s tie and dye initiative. In 2005 individual Zambians in the Diaspora in Canada that had been instrumental in the Rotary Club funds, spent time on mobilizing Zambians in Canada to connect with this problem. The Zambian community raised some money to support Kwasha Mukwenu.

The money the women raise through the various activities provide food, medical supplies and school needs for the children, a few of whom are in high schools. Each year, Kwasha Mukwenu pays required fees and provides school supplies for about 500 children. In 2003 it provided examination fees for high school boys and girls.

In 2005, ZOA’s support to this organization consisted of assisting it gain skills for proposal writing. Board members from ZOA Z worked hard on this. It paid off. During the year Kwasha Mukwenu was a proud recipient of a grant of US $15000 won in the World Bank Market Place competition. Some of the money was to be put to capacity building as a first step. In 2006, Kwasha Mukwenu also benefited from several visits from ZOA Z Board members and other ZOA members visiting from the USA and the United Kingdom.

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