Linda Open Community School is located in a very poor area of Lusaka. When we began working with the community over 14 years ago, it had 800 pupils, very few classrooms, the teachers were unpaid, there were no toilets, no electricity and no running water. As a result, the standard of education lagged well behind government schools and very few pupils sat examinations.

Today, with the support of VisionZambia, the school looks and feels a very different place. There are over 2000 pupils, new classrooms have been built, desks, equipment for the science laboratories and computers have been supplied and also text books. There are now 28 teachers, five of whom are from Linda, and 65 pupils to one teacher. There are toilets, and standpipes deliver clean water. Above all, pupils enter examinations at age 12 and age 14, with a rising pass rate. In the last 2 years, exam pass rates have risen from 57% to 97% at grade 7 and from 27% to 95% at grade 9.

A wall around the school grounds increases the security of the site and gives the school an increased importance within the community. The Head Teacher aims for the school to be seen not only as a place for orphans and vulnerable children but as a centre of educational excellence in its own right.

However, there has been no secondary school provision within Linda. Gaining a grade 12 certificate is essential for securing a job or having the opportunity to go to college. Children who leave education at grade 9 have little prospect of employment and face a life of poverty and all the risks that entails in a country where there is no state provision.

Now VisionZambia wants to give these children a better future by building a secondary school for Linda. Early donations enabled us to build a new classroom block and the first Grade 10 pupils arrived in January 2019. Three quarters of them cannot afford the fees so we have started a scholarship programme to help. Your support for this campaign is changing these children’s lives. To find out more or to donate, click here.

One of our donors, Stefan Goetz, is supporting the scholarship programme through sales of his inspirational calendars. His aim is to fund 50 pupils to go to school in Zambia every year. Click here to see the calendars.