Recently, one of the orphans we support said to the Chairman on a visit to Zimbabwe,
“….Until now we have been rejected by society, but now we can walk proudly and make things as good as and maybe better than others. May God bless you many times for what you have done.”
In some areas, particularly in Mashonaland, we are funding the continued education of farm orphans who were effectively the residue of the farm takeovers. We have certainly not been able to support them all, but there are several groups that we have been able to fund for more than ten years.
The eight young students who reached University/College are flourishing
It is a great pleasure for us as Trustees to know that these eight young students are flourishing at their universities or colleges. After such a challenging start to life here they are, all studying to gain diplomas and degrees in their particular subjects. They want to make a difference, not only in their own lives, but also because they want to give back to society, just as they have been supported by all of us. Rev Mlambo, their mentor, has impressed upon them a sense of responsibility and they each take this very seriously.
In November last year, I visited Zimbabwe and spent time with them all which was a delight. (see photo right). They were in high spirits and could not have been more thankful for the help that we are all providing. Polite was busy that day so Rev Mlambo and I saw here the very next day. Polite is at the University of Zimbabwe studying Industrial Pharmacy, after achieving an ABB result in her A levels last year. It was a remarkable result, given the challenges she has faced over the years.
Nicholas and Marshal are both currently attending the School of Mines in Bulawayo, having both received full scholarships from Anglo American and are really enjoying their course. At Chinhoyi University of Technology, Fortunate is studying Supply Chain Management and Mary is studying Biotechnology both really enjoying the opportunity and the location.
In Gweru, Thabiso is studying Tourism and Hospitality Management at the Midlands State University and really enjoying the course. In Harare, Obey is studying Accountancy at Denmar College, whilst Takunda is studying to be a surveyor at the Harare Polytechnic. He is also a highly skilled basketball player and thus is active on that front also.
Can you help?
The costs for paying for and providing support for all these youngsters is more than we have, and we are therefore appealing to you to give specifically towards their education. We seek an additional £37,500 to cover their education over the next 3 years. We really believe in these young people, having brought them a long way to this point and we really hope you do too.
To learn more about each of these very courageous and determined young people, what they are trying to achieve and how you can help us to help them, please follow this link to a PDF.
The 12 orphans who completed their trades at St Peters, Kubatana
In 2016, 12 of the pupils we sponsored finished their O levels with very few passes, mainly owing to the extraordinary amount of time, years in fact, that they had missed out in their education. we determined that we should find a way to assist them, and we sent them all to St Peters, Kubatana to gain skills as tradespeople so that they could go out and earn a living for themselves.
They concentrated on welding (windows and doors), woodwork, building, mechanics and hairdressing.
This was a very successful process and all of them passed out with a certificate, and each was issued with a starter kit so that they could make a go of earning a living out in the world. All were very happy with the extraordinary assistance they had received from ZAWT over the years of their education.
In 2017 I visited some of them, a year after they had left St Peters, and some, though not all, were earning a living. The girls were all generating a good income from working as hairdressers.
Energy Maburutse – a tragic end to a remarkable young life
“I wish to become a leader in disability rights across the globe.”
It is with great sadness that we alert you to the death of Energy Maburutse. We heard only recently that he had died in February last year after four amazing years of studying at Lynn University in the USA and achieving a degree in Political Science and Communications. Energy was focused on removing the deeply ingrained stigma attached to being disabled in Zimbabwe and to reminding us to focus on that which really matters.
He died on a visit home to see his family in the Honde Valley in Zimbabwe, the first in 4 years. Whilst there, he developed a bad cough and was admitted to hospital where he died, his condition compounded by his brittle bone disease (Osteogenesis Imperfecta).
As ZAWT, we assisted him through his first year at University and he stayed in touch with us. One thing we can be sure of: he touched many lives, both in Zimbabwe and particularly in America. “ We will miss Energy’s wit and his fierce commitment to equality. We will miss his huge smile, his laughter, and the way he would light up each room he entered. His victory in obtaining a degree and making an impact will continue to serve as an inspiration for many disabled students in Zimbabwe to aspire for their dreams.”
In 2015, Energy delivered an excellent speech at the United Nations in New York at the Annual Millennium Conference in which he encourages others not just to give, but to empower young people in Zimbabwe and give them the grounding to move forward with confidence in the future. His speech at the United Nations is it at this link.