Angels on assignment
Volunteers worked night and day to sort and pack books, clothes, school supplies and food to be shipped to Zimbabwe. D-Day was Saturday, October 10, 2009. Thanks to 75 volunteers who made it happen. D-Day could not have happened without the large monetary donations for shipping from Lexis Nexis, $7,500 and Saratoga Springs Rotary Club, $2,500.
Children we serve
DI provides educational scholarships for 350 AIDS orphans. Each of these children received a brand new book to read and keep as their own. None of them had ever owned a book. They also received clothes, shoes, school bags, school supplies and food. Our children are either in child-headed households or grandmother-headed households. Thanks to OMD Staff at the AIDS Institute who gave up their lunch time for a couple months to make each of our 330 girls their very first and only pieces of hand-made jewelry, ear rings and bracelet set.
Lunch is served
The majority of our children in the schools we serve live in extreme poverty therefore three meals a day becomes a luxury. We do our best to work with Mother Support Groups and local churches to provide at least one decent meal in the morning for the children. For most the breakfast we offer may very well be their only meal for the day. Below are the 'kitchens’ in which the Mother Support Groups prepare the meals over an open fire, rain or shine. The big drums are the pots in which the meals are cooked.
School supplies drive
Our heartfelt gratitude to the following schools for donating their used books and unwanted schools supplies - North Albany, Arbor Hill Elementary, Ballston Spa, Shabach Christian Academy in Maryland and Gorham High School in New Hampshire. We also received school supplies and money donations from Lexis Nexis, friends of Dangwa Initiative, Latham, Troy and Saratoga Springs Rotary Clubs.
State of schools we serve - Zimbabwe
It is often said, “A pictures speaks a thousand words”. Unfortunately, these pictures speak of the horrendous status of the schools we serve in Zimbabwe. Dangwa Initiative serves 15 rural based schools in Chivhu where we provide educational supplies and donated used textbooks. These schools have little to nothing, most have torn textbooks which are shared at a ratio of 30 students per book and some cases one textbook per class of 45.
Supplies distribution in Zimbabwe
The container that left on October 10th, 2009 finally arrived in Zimbabwe almost 6 months later. It took another 3 months for books to be resorted and distributed to the schools. Teachers, headmasters, villagers, students and District Officers of both Ministries of Social Services and Education were invited to witness and receive the textbooks and supplies for the schools. Youtube clips will be posted soon to share the experience.
Dangwa Initiative is fortunate to have volunteers in Zimbabwe who work relentlessly to make sure the children received their supplies. Our team is comprised of Executive Director, Tinashe Dangwa and Committee members Lisbon Banda, Perpetual Juru, Patronella Watambwa, and Christina Mumanikwi. We also depend very much on Mother Support Groups, female teachers who have also taken the role of Mentor and Advisor for the Precious Stones girls.