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October 28, 2014 / catherinebwrites


            To be fair to Alfred,  he did make the  valid point that, in Zambia, as in many African countries,  programmes set up by well-intentioned westerners regularly  fall apart. 


Are Zambians  lazy? 

Winston and Florence

Winston and Florence are developing a sustainable food programme.

Are Zambians disinterested?

Teachers in Dedama School

Teachers at a school for street children.

Are Zambians Stupid? Unsophisticated? 

These Zambians are developing a clean water scheme.

 Spend even a couple of days in Zambia and you will realise that  that is patently NOT true.   You will discover that Zambians are intelligent, funny, ambitious, warm, hard-working and concerned for the betterment of their country, their neighbourhood and their community.    The well-intentioned programmes of westerners fall apart because:

  • Zambians are  not consulted
  • No thought is given to whether the programme fulfills  local needs
  • Money is often invested in the wrong areas
  • Local people therefore have  no sense of  ownership.  

So……. if I wanted to make the best use of the Age and Opportunity Bursary and be sure that my work was sustainable,  my best bet would be to fit in with the training and education programme Alfred had already started.   That made total sense to me. So, we set a date, Alfred agreed to set up a series of community training programmes and I agreed to pay for a printer, a projector, a Hi-Pro and the materials needed for the training programmes.

Now all I needed was to get my ticket.   Whew!

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