The KH Zambia Appeal
The King’s Hospital School has supported projects in Kabwe, Zambia for over twenty years. Nurse Mary Chidgey, a former member of staff, was our link with the Buyantanshi Open Community School. This charity school offered free education to vulnerable children in Makalulu, an illegal compound/shanty town, on the edge on Kabwe. KH raised enough money to double the size of the school, sink a well and build drop toilets. Mary soon established Ranchhod Hospice and set up a preschool on the grounds. Here the children, who are too young to attend the BOCCS schools, could begin their education. The school feeding programme is a significant part of this project. We have supported these projects for many years and went on to build a purpose-built preschool in Chilillilila, on the edge on Makalulu.
Many other projects flourished from these roots – the Busy Bees (grandmothers rearing and providing for their grandchildren), Sables (a programme to bring children off the street), weekly bush visits (the hospice community workers go out into the bush bringing medicine and support for poor rural communities), Mary Chidgey Community School, K’ngombi (at Mary’s continued recommendation the local people in K’ngombi set up a school, which they insisted on naming after her).
The KH Zambia Appeal raises funds to support these projects primarily supporting the food programme and education. Sports equipment, clothing and school uniforms have been donated by KH to the preschool, Mary Chidgey Community School and also to Sables Nua, another charity school programme that has grown from these initial projects. During lock down a shipping container brought a variety of equipment to the projects – crutches, wheelchairs, bicycles, educational resources, Lego, clothing … and a great supply of much needed modern books to Bwatcha Library, Kabwe (which had received its last new books in 1967!).
The hospice, preschool and various projects have been managed with efficiency and care for the past 10 years by Nurse Regina Jesse, a volunteer funded by her Lutheran Church in Germany assisted by the Coordinator Edwidge, who has been working in the hospice for 8 years. Every few years a school immersion trip takes place whereby Gaisce students get to experience working in the projects and seeing first-hand the benefit and importance of KH’s support. This trip offers a life changing experience for a lucky few, but the wider KH community knows that it is helping to improve the lives of children, desperately in need of assistance. We were unable to run our usual trip in 2022 but managed to bring a small group to represent the school and see what needs to be done next.
We hope this year to raise some money to replace the hospice ambulance, which was bought second-hand ten years ago and is beginning to show it’s wear. The ambulance is important for everyday use but is also vital for the outreach bush projects.
What we do is a drop in the ocean, but the ocean is made of many drops.
Michelle Murray – KH Teacher
Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireann na daoine.