Something from nothing…

Greetings all! Welcome to this blog, the first in the lead up to the Zimbabwean elections next month – see why here:

School signboard, 2018

It gives me the opportunity to revisit things we – Friends of Pakati – have done in our first 4 years, & tell or retell some stories about Pakati and its community.

Two Heads of Pakati Secondary school, past & present, first meeting in 2018

Let me first let you into a little secret…I have never considered myself to be a creative person, yet over this last 4+ years I have managed to keep this blog going, even through the Coronavirus pandemic.

Visiting Pakati in 2018

Often I have no idea what I will write about, but then I might receive a message from someone which gives me an idea; other times it might be a picture – such as the one at the top of the school signboard – that will inspire me to create something from nothing, e.g.

Meeting some of the staff at Pakati Secondary school in 2018

This post is dedicated to my first return to Pakati, using pictures I took there in 2018. The visit is what inspired me to start Friends of Pakati, thanks in no small part to Head Mr Chifaka (pictured above with the Author). His response to my question about what developments he would most like to see at Pakati was one word – Computers! This blog/website, social media presence & fundraising has all flowed from that single word.

There was no need for the car park (pictured in 2018) when I first worked at Pakati in 1989

In the next few weeks I will revisit out key fundraising efforts, our visits to Pakati in 2019 & 2022, stories I have told before, & meet some of our key stakeholders. Until then, here is a reminder of our important links:

For Twitter, Facebook & Instagram, use @friendsofpakati then for youtube:

For fundraising use or

To email us, use


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 have been a Civil Servant in Bradford since 2005.

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