We sponsor more than 100 students every year. Most are on our secondary school scholarship programs in Malawi, Zimbabwe and Zambia but we also support students who are in job training or higher education. Over 300 students have completed their secondary school education because of our program and your donations. Many of these students have gone on to higher education and find jobs, particularly as teachers.
While we continue to provide scholarships for boys, The Rosemary Pencil Foundation pays particular attention to improving education for girls. We have a ‘girls only’ initiative in Zimbabwe which we started in 2011 and in 2017 we started the program in neighboring Zambia for girls. In rural communities with severe lack of resources, boys will be educated before the girls in the family. This means there are girls leaving school at age 14. When girls have access to schooling, many take full advantage and are determined to do well. Recent research shows that when girls have the opportunity to read books, they read more often than boys. We have so many former students now who have gone on to have teaching careers, something that would be impossible without a secondary school education.
Our partner on the ground is Children in the Wilderness, a non-profit organization with branches in Malawi and Zimbabwe/Zambia. It is the non profit arm of two major safari companies. CITW hosts orphaned and underprivileged children from local communities at camps that it runs and it is from these groups of teenagers that our students are chosen. CITW provides follow-up programs and counselors are in touch with former campers, allowing us to track our students’ progress throughout the year and ensure that school attendance is steady and students do well academically. CITW also runs after-school programs at some of the rural schools with a focus on the environment and conservation, teaching the children (of all ages) to take care of their surroundings and help prevent poaching and the cutting down of trees that has led to massive de-forestation.
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