As one of our biggest and long term projects, each year the African Bush Camps Foundation runs a High School Scholarships Program, through which orphaned and vulnerable students from Hwange Main Camp Primary School and Mambanje Primary School compete for a full scholarship to the best boarding school they can gain entrance to in Zimbabwe. The program currently supports 23 children and also aims to provide guidance and support in other areas of their lives which influence physical and mental well-being.
As part of these broader support efforts, a camp is held once a year, focussing on developing life skills and providing students with experiences they wouldn’t necessarily have at school or boarding school.
In 2017 the high school scholarship camp was been held at the Iganyana Children’s Bush Camp, run by Painted Dog Conservation from 27th to 30th August. The aims of the camp are to:
* Equip students with life skills including communication, stress management, problem
solving, decision making, conflict management, team work, time management, and
* Motivate and inspire students to be more successful in life
* Bring the scholarship students together creating a circle of support for each other –
creation of friendship bonds and mentorship connections from amongst the students
16 students out of the 20 (9 Male, 11 Female) high school scholarship students participated in
the camp which was facilitated by professional youth training facilitators and featured a strong
focus on learning about conservation issues through a visit to the Painted Dog Conservation
Facility and learn about their area of focus and more about endangered species.
Read a heartfelt thank you letter from Michael, a young student here
Students also enjoyed a game drive into the Hwange National Park during the last day of the
camp and were very excited that they sighted a lion amongst other different animals.
In addition to the high school students, the 2 students that are on scholarship at a Tertiary level also participated bringing the entire total to 18 students. These tertiary level students are students who have been on scholarship right through from primary level and are now at university. Rutendo Mangwana is currently on 3rd year at University studying Human Resources Management while Candy Maposa is now in her 2nd year of university studying Forest Resources and Wildlife Management. The benefit of having Rutendo & Candy attend is that they inspire the younger ones and show them the possibilities and the levels they can reach through education.
Through these sorts of engagements with students, we hope to see improvements in their outlook on life and academic performance. The scholarship pool is made up of orphans and vulnerable children who require constant support, particularly at the psychosocial level to help them grow and be more active rather than continue with a passive victim outlook.
The camp is a critical part of the scholarship program and must be held each year if we are to have a complete program that prepares students for life ahead of them and to prepare them to be active and responsible members of society.
We are in need of financial support for our High School Scholarship Program, read more about it all here and please do consider supporting.