Maunga village is a small community of about 50 households located less than an hour’s drive from our Thorntree River Lodge in Livingstone, Zambia. The village is very remote with no running water, electricity, network, or cellphone reception, and has poor road infrastructure. The nearest town is about 20 km (12.2 miles) away from this village. As part of our mission at ABCF to partner with communities that are located near our camps, we have been supporting this village since we opened Thorntree River lodge in 2017.
Our focus thus far has been providing access to adequate health care to the community by building a fully equipped medical clinic as well as improving the quality of education in the community by supplying learning materials to the local primary school and improving the school infrastructure.
MAUNGA PRIMARY SCHOOL
The Maunga primary school is the only primary school in the village and currently accommodates 177 learners from ECE to grade 7. The school has three teachers including the principal. To date, we have painted the nursery classroom and the ablution blocks, provided learning materials and textbooks, installed solar power and burglar bars for the computer lab, and fixed all the windows at the school.
ABCF has partnered with Go2Africa to support Maunga primary school as part of their Positive Impact Initiative. Through our collaborative efforts, we aim to alleviate the following challenges identified at the school: Improve the school pass rate, improve learning facilities, and increase the quality of education for learners in Zambia.
“I can clearly remember a special moment when I was invited to plant a tree for the opening of Thorntree River Lodge in June 2017. I can imagine how tall that tree has grown after all these years. At Go2Africa, we now have the privilege of planting a symbolic tree by partnering with the African Bush Camps Foundation in yet another of their inspiring efforts to uplift and empower a local school.– Liesel van Zyl | Product Manager Go2Africa
CHALLENGES IDENTIFIED AT THE SCHOOL
The school has a high absenteeism rate and the current pass rate at the school is 22%. This is due to:
- Learners that are coming to school hungry; many are travelling long distances to school by foot and are learning on an empty stomach.
- The school is understaffed, they currently have three teachers, so the teachers and the principal are teaching more than one grade a day.
- Some learners drop out of school to go to work or are married off; child marriages are on the rise in Zambia due to factors such as poverty and teenage pregnancies.
- Learners have no educational support at home; parents are not educated and are therefore not able to assist learners with schoolwork and homework. Teachers are currently volunteering their free time to set up literacy classes for adults in the community.
Through our partnership with Go2Africa we aim to leave a lasting impact on this community and this primary school by focusing on these three elements:
OUR APPROACH TO TACKLING THE CHALLENGES
We aim to address the challenges identified at Maunga primary school in three phases over the next few months:
- Phase 1: Infrastructure improvements to the school which include making much-needed improvements to the classroom blocks, building additional ablution blocks, and providing learning materials and resources to learners at the school.
- Phase 2: Addressing the nutrition challenges faced by learners through various feeding initiatives and agriculture programs at the school.
- Phase 3: Increasing the teaching resources and support for learners at the school.
We kicked off phase one last month and we are currently upgrading the school step and roof as well as the ablution blocks at the school.
ABCF is committed to improving the livelihoods of the communities surrounding our camps. Maunga primary school is a prime example of our ongoing efforts to address and alleviate some of the pressing challenges these communities face. You can find out more about our ongoing projects today by visiting our ABCF website and getting involved in a project that is close to your heart
We are humbled and excited to grow our relationship, learning from each other on this journey, to positively impact the lives and well-being of rural communities living close to the lodges we send our clients. It is important for Go2Africa to provide travel opportunities that are responsible and meaningful. Maunga primary school is a project that we hope will create lasting change that will echo through the generations. Much like the tree we planted, we want our relationship and our involvement to grow from strength to strength. – Liesel van Zyl | Product Manager Go2Africa