January 16th, 2019
30 years ago today, I started work as a teacher at Pakati Secondary School in Zimbabwe, through the international development charity, VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas).
There is, as you would expect, a story behind it all, but that’s for another day. Today I am launching a fundraising project to help both the Secondary & Primary schools buy much-needed IT equipment.
This all came about following my holiday in Zimbabwe in September 2018, when I paid my first visit to the school since 1992. I was moved by the very warm welcome from the school & local community, and even though the current Head teacher Mr Chifaka Mugove had heard of me we had not met before.
I went round the school with him & some of the staff, looking at developments since I worked there. There have been several changes, but the Head said if he could have computers at the school it would help the students immensely, and if the Primary School was also involved then it would help longer-term in improving education in the area. I am in regular contact with the school in Zimbabwe & other local organisations who are willing to help e.g. getting electricity connected to the classrooms – already there at the admin block, local transport from Harare to the school
On my return I looked at what could be done from here to help the schools, & there are some companies who refurbish used IT equipment, adding software, and then sell them on with shipping costs to the capital, Harare. I am in contact with one in particular – Computers for Africa – in order to fundraise towards the costs – approx. £8000 depending on how many we can buy – I have now set up the following:
Gofundme: Friends of Pakati
There will be fundraising events both in Bradford & Scunthorpe, and between them too…notably a Sponsored Walk from Bradford City’s football ground to Scunthorpe United’s football ground from Thursday 25/04/19 to Saturday 27/04/19, arriving at Glanford Park by lunchtime ready for the game between the two clubs that afternoon. Route tbc, but approx. 60 miles in total.