**Latest News** from Friends of Pakati

Here is a summary of what is going on with Friends of Pakati at present:

Fundraising

Currently our funds are quite low after https://friendsofpakati.com/2020/07/11/joint-venture-back-story-and-responses/ (please see https://friendsofpakati.com/fundraising/ for full details). If anyone reading this can help, or pass this on to someone else who can donate, please do. In order for us to fulfil our objectives we will need further injections of money from generous-feeling Friends of Pakati!

I am hoping to have some good news soon on a donation from a friend of mine – watch this space!

Fundraising activities maybe limited, but we are open 24/7 for anyone willing to give any amount to us. Here is how you can donate: http://gofundme.com/friends-of-pakati or https://www.paypal.com/paypalme/my/settings?flow=cmV0dXJuVXJsPS9teWFjY291bnQvc2V0dGluZ3MmY2FuY2VsVXJsPS9teWFjY291bnQvc2V0dGluZ3M= Thank you to any and all who offer what they can.

Computers

One if the computers donated in 2019

The company who donated a number of items last year, the Stephenson Group from Horsforth in Leeds, have promised even more for our next shipment. After speaking to IT manager Stuart Pine earlier today, they have at least 13 PC’s available for us, possibly a few more. We still don’t know when we will be sending them to Zimbabwe yet, either April/May or Sept/Oct in 2021 are possible.

Stuart Pine, the Author, and Richard Musgrave also of the Stephenson Group

Charitable Trust

So far we have had two people actually accepted an invitation to become Trustees. I have had confirmations from both Stuart Pine – see above – and my fellow former teacher at Pakati Secondary school, Debbie Chadbon. I have contacted others and am waiting for their responses, plus a couple more to contact and discuss it with. I think 5 would be the optimum number at this time. Naturally, I myself will also be one of them. I am using a combination of websites for advice, including the government’s HMRC, and one called http://charitysetup.org.uk . However it is not a straightforward process and will take some time to complete.

Debbie Chadbon in 1992 at Pakati Secondary school

Promotion

Following consultations with various stakeholders in Friends of Pakati, some limited promotional adverts will be added on facebook and possibly twitter to try and increase/generate more interest in us, and hopefully more traffic to the website. Keep an eye out in the next week or two…

Stories

I have a number of items in the pipeline, including the following: New chapters from Pauline Machengo’s longer tale of life in South Africa, more former Pakati students tell their stories, plus an update or two from more regular contributors. All this on top of the fundraising, IT and charity updates to come!

Storyteller Pauline Machengo. author of ‘Outside Zim Borders’

The stories were due to include the phased re-opening of schools across Zimbabwe, starting with exam classes this coming week. However, due to a sudden unexpected spike in Covid 19 cases, that has now been put on hold until further notice. No word so far on what will happen to those exams which were planned for this year.

Deserted Pakati Secondary school in March this year – no sign of a return just yet

Invitation

I am inviting new contributions from any who read this blog! Are you following us? Are you a former student or teacher of either Pakati Primary or Secondary school? Would you like to tell your story? Do you have any comments or suggestions to make? What would you like to see on the blog? Do you have any ideas on more fundraising activities? Can you help spread the word using your contacts on social media? Tell us what you think, ask any questions, about ANYthing you see on here. Please do let us know your thoughts. Contacts as follows: friendsofpakati@gmail.com http://twitter.com/friendsofpakati http://facebook.com/Friends-of-pakati

Author:

My name is Chris Walker, and between January 1989 and September 1991 I worked, through VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas), at Pakati Secondary School in Murehwa South district in Zimbabwe. I was a Maths teacher for 2 years, the Acting Head for the last 8 months there. I have also taught in Botswana & the UK, had 4 years working for VSO, and spent the last 14 years as a Civil Servant in Bradford. I married a Zimbabwean woman & we have 2 sons.

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