Bags of Love for Children from Child-headed Families

Involved alumni:

The challenge that the project addresses

I am addressing poverty and education for less privileged children in Zimbabwe.

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What is your project doing to respond to this challenge?

In 2019 I initiated a project to assist children from child headed families by providing them with basic needs such as food, clothes, shoes and blankets. Through my organization we have also enrolled some of the children who were excluded from school into school. We have done this through support from well wishers, both individuals and corporate, who have been donating in kind to the cause. Due to COVID-19 the need for support has accelerated due to the fact that some of these children were surviving from odd jobs, selling and begging in the streets but due to lockdown restrictions they’re not able to do this, hence we have been overwhelmed by calls for support. We are also kickstarting a skills development assistance program for those who are 18 years old and above who may not qualify for the relief program where they learn sewing and farming as we have received a donation of farming equipment and sewing machines from Tools With A Mission UK. This initiative is for the less privileged young people who are 18 and above with first preference given to those who are heads or breadwinners in a child headed family where they’re looking after their younger siblings. Graduates of this skills initiative will be assisted to start their own businesses so as to earn an honest living as at 18 some don’t want to go to formal school so the skills development comes in handy.

Describe the project's impact

Since the inception of the relief program we have assisted more than 100 child headed families directly and we have also referred thousands of other children to other partners where our own capacity is constrained. We have also identified about 50 young people for the first cohort of the skills program and plans to kickstart the initiative are at an advanced stage. We have managed to enrol 50 students back to school. We hope to increase this number with resources permitting as there are thousands of child headed families in Zimbabwe that needs support

How will you spend the R20,000 award if you win?

About R5000 will be used to buy food for the children and R15000 will be used for the skill enhancing program for training for the income generating project. Part of the profits will also help graduating kids from the skills training program to start their own businesses and able to make an honest living.