More about the work I'll be doing in Zambia

Trip Start Jun 29, 2009
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Trip End Aug 07, 2009


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Flag of United States  , Texas
Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The organization with whom I will be volunteering in Zambia is called The Happy Africa Foundation. Check out their website if you have a chance www.happyafricafoundation.org. I found this opportunity through a group called Volunteer Adventures (www.volunteeradventures.com). Volunteer Adventures does a couple of programs with Happy Africa, and also has opportunities in other countries and continents. The program I will be working with is called Teaching and AIDS Orphans Program. Happy Africa coordinates volunteers with other groups similar to Volunteer Adventures as well, from various counties. One of those is African Impact (www.africanimpact.com). I'm looking forward to a fun, diverse group of people!

Here is a little bit about the program:
"On this project, you will split your time between several local schools, the Livingstone Street Kids Community Association orphanage, and other community-development program sites. At the schools, you will assist teachers, coach sports, and simply be a positive presence in the children's lives. At the orphanage, which houses children who lost their parents to AIDS, you will help children with their homework, play games, and provide assistance with theater productions and other extramural activities. Your energy and presence will help the students develop intellectually and creatively, and will make a lasting impression on their lives.

Livingstone schools are badly underfunded and, as a result, are overcrowded and lack critical resources. The situation is so dire that schools must operate under a system known as "hot-seating," conducting two or even three school sessions daily in order to accommodate all the children. Thus, many students are in school for only two or three hours per day. To help maximize the quality of precious school time, volunteers work as teaching assistants in the classrooms or as sport coaches to keep kids off the streets. The schools in Livingstone have poor facilities, but the children are eager to learn."

A typical day may look like this:
0700: Its rise and shine, and time for breakfast. The volunteers also spend some time preparing for the day, ensuring they have everything they need in their teaching bags.

0745: Off to work. The volunteer arrives at their assigned school and class. After saying hello to all the children, it's time to get down to some work. The children usually have half hour lessons, social studies, maths, science, English, and why not join in on their local language lesson – and learn some Njanja yourself?!

1130: You will be picked up from your project and be taken back to the house for lunch

1200: Lunch

1300: Planning Session – You are given this time to prepare for your afternoon or other projects you may need to prepare for, this may mean designing and making posters, researching, writing quiz's or tests or simply gathering supplies.

1345: depart for your community project. This may be farming, building, or painting. It may mean an art club or a reading club, or assisting with home-based care or in one of the homes. You may also be involved in planning and delivering one of our workshops to the kids of the community schools covering topics such as basic first aid, drugs and alcohol, HIV and AIDS or life skills.

1700: You will arrive back to the house for supper after your projects. Your evening is free, so why not treat yourself to a meal out, or simply sit enjoy a beer in front of the TV whilst planning for the next day.

Volunteers are given Saturdays and the whole of Sunday off each week.

Accommodation
Livingstone volunteers reside at a comfortable lodge a stone's throw away from Livingstone town centre. This accommodation is brand new and features a dining room/meeting room, a bar, a TV lounge, a reading lounge, kitchen and 11 en suite bedrooms. The House sleeps up to 36 people and accommodates volunteers from our medical, teaching and sports projects.
 
The House: The house is divided into 3 sections on the same property. Volunteers are free to use all sections of the house. The house has a security wall and 24 hour security. Your meals are cooked from this house and there is a volunteer co-ordinator who lives on site. The house has its very own bar in which you can relax at the end of a long day. 

The Resource Centre: The resource centre is designed for our volunteers to ensure that they are well equipped for their project. This is for you to use at all times and includes art materials, sporting equipment and reading books and posters.
 
Location: The house is positioned within walking distance to town where you will find a wide range of amenities including Internet Cafes, a bakery, Ice-cream parlour, Barclays bank, ATM’s, curio markets, supermarkets, local markets, a post office, various restaurants including Chinese, seafood, Indian, Italian, English, of course – Zambian and two museums!  You are also located close to one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the world – Victoria Falls, where you will find a wide range of adrenalin activities, River boats, and game viewing opportunities.  Livingstone is situated in a prime location between some amazing countries.  You will be in an ideal location for spending the weekend in Zimbabwe or popping over to Chobe National Park in Botswana for a day of ultimate game viewing.
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