Great New Support – Welcome to The TeamCaro Foundation!

Who are The TeamCaro Foundation I hear you ask? And what do they have to do with Friends of Pakati? All will be revealed below…

Following the live facebook eventย we have been gaining support from a number of people, including someone from our recent post

Now, also from that same facebook event, we are so delighted to welcome The TeamCaro Foundation on board! After a few discussions between Caroline (one of the founders) and myself, an agreement was reached to help us continue our project online for the forseeable future.

The TeamCaro Foundation receives Lottery Funds, and as long as that continues, they will donate money to us for the express purpose of keeping the website going. These first years, I have paid for the website out of my own money. This year it will cost ยฃ240.00. The TeamCaro Foundation have already put that amount into the bank account I use for our donations. This is due to be paid in mid-June, so it is a very timely gift for us!

Here is what they are all about:

๐Ÿ’• Hello Friend, The TeamCaro Foundation at your service.

๐Ÿ“Œ When The TeamCaro Foundation started our main focus was supporting women diagnosed with Breast Cancer, but now our Team has expanded and we now support any type of cancer.

* Our Purpose is to:

โ€ข Support you and your family during this challenging journey.

โ€ข Ensure that you and your family understand the disease. Equip you with the correct information on services you can access and benefits you are eligible for.

โ€ข Give you a chance to explore your feelings in a safe space where you’ll not be judged nor rushed.

โ€ข Give you a shoulder to lean on so you are not alone.

โ€ข Provide practical help such as companionship, shopping, light domestic work etc, to make life manageable for families during the cancer journey.

๐Ÿ’–๐Ÿ’™ We would like to encourage you to get in touch with our Team if you have any inquiries or need our help.

Who are The TeamCaro? What else can they say about themselves? Here is more…


Caroline Zimano, the founder of The TeamCaro Foundation. In 2015, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and had a 2 year journey with treatment. During this time she experienced high levels of support but came across many that did not have support at all.
By the end of her treatment, she decided she needed to give back to the community by supporting families affected by a cancer diagnosis.

She was joined by Sharon Paul and Lynn Kanyowa-Ndhlovu who shared her vision and passion and they have never looked back.


Caroline, Sharon and Lynn are passionate about supporting charities that support children to gain a better education because from there, they can raise awareness of cancer and other issues that impact on society and that is why they are supporting Friends of Pakati (FoP). We would like to see community leaders born out of FoP and celebrate many achievements as a result of their sibling efforts.


You might ask what is this to do with us? Well, from the excerpt in bold above, it is clear that educational development is very important to them. The TeamCaro Foundation supports charities based and/or working in Caroline’s home country of Zimbabwe, including children of people with Cancer, and/or orphans whose parent(s) have died from Cancer. The reason some students cannot afford school fees or uniforms might be due to Cancer deaths in the family, so it may well be true of some Pakati students also.

We at Friends of Pakati want to raise enough money not just for IT equipment or to install the internet, but also for selected students who may not otherwise go to school – scholarships if you will.

This gift is a real bonus for Friends of Pakati, giving us an unexpected but most welcome lift. So from all of us here, we say a huge THANK YOU/TATENDA!! to The TeamCaro Foundation for their support. We look forward to a long and mutually beneficial relationship together.๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

Sharon & Lynn

Here are the key links for The TeamCaro Foundation






Sharonย  & Caroline

Latest news:

I am delighted to let people know a little more about how Friends of Pakati might work together with The TeamCaro Foundation. They are proposing a collective approach by UK based charities who provide a variety of support ‘on the ground’ in Zimbabwe.

The talk is of a consortium of smaller organisations (like ourselves) in order to have a single, larger, more effective voice, when talking to the powers that be about ways to help smooth the processes of delivering the support we want to provide.

To further this aim, Friends of Pakati have been invited to an event, just outsude London, where such charities are getting together to discuss their organisations, and the Author has accepted an offer to speak briefly to those present. It offers an opprtunity to network, spread the word, gain new followers and maybe fundraise too by selling merchandise. I will give more information on this before and after the event.

A Tale of Two Primaries….part 2

Welcome to part 2 of our update on Primary schools, this one being about Mapanga, just a few kilometres from Pakati schools. If you recall, we have been trying to help the nearby Mapanga to raise funds towards installing solar power, see andย

For this update, I must thank my friend Mrs Maenzanise for the information and photos over a number of messages. It has been a busy time for her as Head of Mapanga, not least because of an arm injury she suffered some months ago which is still affecting her.

Below are the details of what she has sent me recently about life at Mapanga Primary school, and in response to our attempts to help them:

“๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ’ƒ๐Ÿฟ thanks so much for the solar idea. We managed to buy the equipment. Very soon we will have it installed by a different local guy. We did that for it is very cost effective dear. Our money $600 could not meet some of the charges so we were unable to hire the man from Vetronics Solar unfortunately. We are really proud of you. Keep shining God shall bless you abundantly.


We got our solar power installed, so can now charge our phones & provide electricity for such things as the school laptop, internet service and printer. This allows us to keep on top of our administration.

Our learners have been in school for some time, though now we are on a 3-week break.

Many thanks to Friends of Pakati and all others who generously donated the funds we were able to use to get the Solar Power project up & running๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘”

Great to see progress at Mapanga, and we hope we can see more developments at the 5 schools across Ward 14

A Tale of Two Primaries…part 1

Just recently I have heard from two of the Primary schools in Ward 14 of Murewa District. Namely Pakati and Mapanga, both with different items of news of interest to Friends of Pakati. In the next blog I will update you on the solar power and other developments at Mapanga.

First, we hear from Pakati Primary, courtesy of Mr Johannes Chorichi, regular provider of information & photos/videos of life at the school.

This year has been especially difficult for any school for many reasons. But Covid 19 has really put a strain on them, with new protocols & ways of working being implemented at short notice. One thing they have needed is more staff, and several have been posted there recently. Some are permanent staff, others are temporary teachers. Here are photos of several of the staff including newcomers and existing teachers:

Mr Muchena. Grade 6 teacher

Ms Manhando. Grade 2 teacher

Mai Mahachi. Grade 4 teacher

Ms Dangarembwa. ECDย  teacher


Mr Mupayikwa, Grade 7 teacher

Ms Pazara. Grade 2 teacher


Among the staff also shown here are Mai Kupara (existing) ad Ms Nyamutsa (new permanent, Grade 1 teacher).

I hope the new staff are settling in well, and are made welcome by their colleagues and the community.

Winter is already there in Murewa, and Mr Chorichi tells me it is cold at Pakati this year. My own memories are that it never got below 0ยฐ at any time, though winter was noticably cooler, with quite strong winds occasionally, and a lot of cloud cover.

**Weekend Star** Tinashe Mudzvatangi

Welcome to Friends of Pakati, the blog dedicated to Pakati Primary & Secondary schools.

Allow me to introduce Tinashe Mudzvatangi, former student of both Pakati schools, and our Weekend Star. It is a tale of triumph over adversity….I hope you enjoy his story!

“Hello hello my dear Friends of Pakati, my name is Tinashe Mudzvatangi and l grew up in Murehwa area. As a child, I attended both Pakati Primary and Secondary schools. l grew up in a village called Makuvaza about 5 kilometers from the school though am not sure how accurate that is.

l remember it was, and still is, a subsistence farming area where people grow enough to feed their families. However things have changed with time, as people started growing Sweet potatoes and other crops for sale in Mbare musika (a large market in Harare) to try and make ends meet.

We used to go to school bare footed because my grand parents couldn’t afford to buy shoes sometimes, especially during my pimary education. Fast forward to grade 6 thereabouts l vividly remember not attending school for about 3 weeks due to lack of fees, and my class teacher Mr Nyamahohwa had to send a letter to my Granny asking that l report to school the following day. There was a test we ought to write, which l did and came up on top in our class!

My friend Aaron and myself in 2002, when I was in Form1 at Pakati Secondary

I can honestly say l never had a complete uniform at primary school. It sounds very sad now when l look back, l am a sportsman l love playing soccer and l still do. When the grade 7 results came out l was happy because l had passed, but the dilemma quickly came back to my mind because l didn’t have the fees to enroll at Pakati Secondary.

l herded people’s cattle in trying to raise the money but it just wasn’t enough. My granny pleaded with the school authorities and they allowed me to be in form one, but l always got sent back as l could not pay the fees in time. l was devasted each day that l could be sent back from the school.

This is 2015 in Mbare with my friend Pedzisai Munemo.

Struggling like that and really having no clear view of what l was going to become, then came a program called BEAM headed by one Mrs Emma Gweshe. l don’t know the criteria they used to select those whom they could pay fees for but l found myself in their program. l believe someone within the school authorities played a very big and important role on my behalf, and to this day l am very grateful.

With my friend Edwin Ndawana in Kambuzuna section 3 (Harare suburb) in 2010.

Now, fees were paid on time and they (BEAM) came at intervals to see how all the kids that they paid fees for were doing. I then rediscovered myself during this time and attended school each and every day. My grades improved to the gratitude of Mrs Gweshe and I really competed with the best in my class. She was happy and developed trust in me such that she even visited our homestead to meet my Granny.

I was delighted to be appointed the President of all orphans who they paid fees for, so l could look into the community and convince those who had already dropped out to come back under this program. I got my first complete uniform when l was in form 3 and l tell you it felt so nice and comforting, l sat for my ‘O’ level on 2006 and managed 3 Bs’ in English , Geography ,Science and a C in Agriculture. 8 am grateful to Emma Gweshe and her entire team.

With my friend Chrispen Kubhadya in 2016 in Mufakose, Harare.

In 2006 when we sat for our O level examinations (GCSE) we were meant to start writing English. However our English paper was reported to have been opened by someone in Marondera (administrative centre for the region) so it was postponed. We didn’t write on our first day and it really affected all of us but l personally didn’t worry. We had to then write it lastly and am glad l passed it.

Just 2 days after, l left Murehwa for Harare where l stayed with my uncle in Glenview 1 (in the Harare suburbs). As we all know you can’t just be staying and eating somewhere, but you must contribute. So l started looking for a job without anything to show for any job since l was waiting for my results.

I got a job at a wholesale selling drinks and they needed strong man because the job requires a lot of energy. l almost left the first day but l had no option other than to stay. I worked there but the wholesale closed down after 8 months owing to debts.

Since then l have worked in Supermarkets, at Zfc Limited, Securico security services at Chitewe Law Practice where l have been for the past 8 years. l am now working as a legal clerk and still aiming high.

May l just mention my Science teacher then Ms Shupikai Mutongi, History teacher Blessing Mushaninga, Mr Chifaka who taught us Commerce, Mrs Chingoriwo my Agriculture teacher, Mrs Makaza who was my English teacher, Mrs Mazarire and Godfrey Katonha and Mrs Katonha who played their distinctive roles when we were away from home, thank you!

With my wife Vaidah Muchemeri

Am a proud father of twin boys who are 7 years old now . To those friends who will read this please may you be blessed and share your stories on this platform. To all my teachers l say thank you for everything, most of us are who we are today because of you so again thank you!”

My twin boys now aged 7

How great to see Tinashe doing so well! Coming from such a difficult set of circumstances, it is an inspiration to many fron the area. It is one of the reasons I publish this blog, to show that no matter what your background is, with help and/or the right approach, there is always hope for the future.





Meet our first regular donor – Sharlom Chaitika!


Friends of Pakati is delighted to introduce Sharlom Chaitika, who was mentioned in a previous blog

She has a link to Pakati, which will become clear as you read her brief story below:

“My name is Sharlom Chaitika. I am 27 years old ,I was born and raised in the Zimbabwe. I moved to the U.K. during my O levels. I did not attend Pakati school but I went to Dudley Hall Primary school and eventually went to Presbyterian secondary school and Chibi hHgh School in Zimbabwe, both boarding schools.

Currently I work as a Biomedical Scientist at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust and I have a passion for music, outdoors, and science. Also I love serving my community, as I have aspirations to one day build a school in Zimbabwe, offering education to those from less fortunate backgrounds.

This is what inspired me to come on board and help out with Pakati schools, for me I believe this is paying it forward. I came across Friends of Pakati via my Facebook page, and now I believe this is so because one of my primary school teachers, Mr Bothwell Riside, is very much involved with Friends of Pakati. He is an inspiration and passionate about education.

The Author with Bothwell Riside, September 2019

Throughout my primary school days he helped me excel and help me transition from being a day scholar to boarding school life. He also spoke with my parents here in the U.K. continually updating them on my progress and well being. Not just me either, he also went on to teach my brother and sister who went to the same primary school. Nyasha and Poula Chaitika, both are now doing extremely well in their chosen field of work.

Lastly, it is an honour to help Friends of Pakati, though it may not be much hopefully that little can go a long way. I am honoured to be part of something great and praying for greater things on Friends of Pakatiโ€™s behalf in the future.”

So, the link, if a bit tenuous is this: Sharlom is the former student of a former Pakati student! However, we welcome her willingness to support us here at Friends if Pakati, and hope many others will join her.

To donate, please go toย or toย

If you are willing to do as Sharlom does, please email me atย so an arrangement can be made.

In the background….


1992 – students help celebrate the opening of the new classroom block at Pakati Secondary school -photo from Debbie Chadbon


Greetings from Friends of Pakati! I know it feels like we are a bit quiet right now, but there are a few things going on in the background, some of which should see us be more established. Below is a little more information about them…

  • We have our first regular donor – Sharlom Chaitika – a Zimbabwean now living in the UK has set up a monthly payment to us, so a big ‘thank you’ from Friends of Pakati!


  • I am just waiting for more information – links, logo, story and pics – from a rising star of Gospel music. This from another Zimbabwean in the UK. She is also interested in helping us financially…more about her very soon!


  • This week I hope to hear is from another UK-based Zimbabwean, who is already involved in various charitable causes. There is some potential to expand the reach of Friends of Pakati, and I will elaborate further when I am able to tell the full story. There is an offer to help with some of the costs, such as running the website.

  • I am planning to start a new feature…picking a photo from from the archives which I use on our Instagram page – @friendsofpakati – and giving the back story and a full update on it. I have one already chosen, and am waiting for more info from the individual in the photo.


  • I have begun to put together our 6 month review of 2021 to publish at the end of June. There have been highlights, important blogs, eventsย  pictures etc., but it will give me a chance to look forward into the coming months as we head towards the 3rd anniversary of Friends of Pakati in January 2022

  • There has been a steady increase in donations during May, largely thanks to Debbie’s efforts with her fundraising bike ride recently. Full details will be shown in the monthly updates of the Fundraising page and Income & Expenditure page soon.


  • I am always on the lookout for new things – stories, connections, photos, ideas, ways to improve this project & spread the word. Please do let us know what you think about it all (good or bad) though our socia media presence & links

Success! Debbie & Paul’s Bike Ride Completed!

Excellent news! Today I got an email from Debbie Chadbon, confirming that yesterday Debbie and her husband Paul had successfully completed their planned bike ride.

Read about the publicity she had in advance here:ย

The ride was in aid of Friends of Pakati, as Debbie is, like the author, a former teacher at Pakati Secondary school back in the early 1990’s.

So far, we have recieved donations totalling ยฃ275.00, bringing our balance up to over ยฃ1200, so THANK YOU DEBBIE, PAUL & ALL WHO DONATED ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

The pair had planned a 50 mile/80 km route out of Bristol (where they live) and back again.

Here is the email I had today:

Hi Chris
The bike ride went well although it was very tiring.ย  We cycled in a circular route from Bristol to Thornbury and back; mainly on cycle tracks and quiet country lanes. It was lovely to cycle through the countryside which looks so lush and green at this time of year, and we only got caught in the rain once.ย  We stopped in Thornbury for lunch and had a couple of other breaks.ย  It took 8 1/2 hours altogether and the last 10 miles were a struggle, especially as the wind picked up. I crashed out on our (nicely cushioned) sofa, resting my tired legs, with a nice cup of tea when we got home.
I have attached some photos of the day.
Best wishesย 
Below are the photos she sent:

Debbie sets off from home…

…soon she was looking across the Severn Valley towards Wales.

There is a lot of farmland in the area.

Taking a breather…

…just outside the grounds of Thornbury Castle.

Debbie’s last stop was at Warmley Station, a former railway station on the old Bristol – Bath line. Now it is a cycle path.

Finally she made it home for a cup of tea๐Ÿ‘

Great to see Debbie using our merchandise๐Ÿ‘

Please support us by donating toย adding our email address if askedย or toย





Not just a school signboard…

I was looking through some of the photos I have gathered while putting together this blog in the last 2 years & 5 months, and it all really started when, in September 2018, I stood by the school signboard for the first time in over 26 years.

It was a different signboard to the one I knew in 1989-91 when I was teaching there, on the other side of the tree in the background. It served as the bus-stop for the Njenje family nearby as well as many others. The new one still does.

The signboard has become something more – a meeting place, almost a tourist spot! On my return visit to Pakati in 2019, I was humbled by the warm greetings I had from the Njenje family there. It was where, in 1991, they gave me my totem.

Also, as I was about to stay with my friend Bothwell Riside at his family home next to the school, I had a picture taken with him there too.

Now, when someone I know visits the school, they send me pictures by the school signboard, but also by the relatively new sign by the turn off to Musami from the tarred are some of them I have had…

Below is Vari Mayez of VaTonatsa Foundation on her way to Pakati Primary last year. She was delivering the first batch of study booklets we had jointly produced.

In 2019, former Pakati student Lorraine Mapuranga revisited the school, where I once taught her Maths, when she was on a visit home from South Africa

More recently, another former Pakati student, Rev. Aggie Fombo, was in the area, and sent me this:

Here are some more of my own pics which also appear in the blog..

In addition there is a signboard for Pakati Primary school as you approach the Secondary…

…plus, just after that, is one at the entrance to the Secondary school itself.

There is something about the signboard for me, it signifies I am back in the area where I spent nearly 3 years of my life, time which definitely has had a profound effect on me as a person. It is one of the reasons I keep the project going, to try & do something for the community who accepted me all those years ago.

To help, please donate viaย

If it asks for it, put the email addressย

Or viaย

Donations! THANK YOU’s and an update on our progress…

This particular post is a pleasure to write, as we have started to pick up more donations, some from brand new donors! Before I list all those who have been kind enough to give to Friends of Pakati, the very latest news came in to me on Wednesday, and confirmed just yesterday morning about this:

My fellow former VSO volunteer and Maths Teacher at Pakati Secondary school (91-93), Debbie Chadbon, sent me this photo from her local newspaper (Fishponds is a district of Bristol by the way!):

The photo was accompanied by the following message about a new donation:

Hi Chris. The donation was for ยฃ120. People are beginning to give me sponsorship for my bike ride. Iโ€™ve attached a photo of an article in our local news magazine about the ride so hopefully that will bring some more donations in. Paul and I cycled 31 miles last weekend in preparation and we are planning a similar distance this weekend. I โ€˜m planning to take it slowly for the 50 miles, take lots of breaks and hope it doesnโ€™t rain too much.

What a wonderful effort by Debbie & her husband Paul. Let us hope the weather is kind to them on 22nd!

What is it all for? This…ย

Donate viaย orย

The Gofundme page has stopped letting me send a ‘thank you for your donation’ message recently, that is partly why I listed everyone on here.

Buying merchandise is another way to donate – seeย for full details.

This year so far….

Below are the names of all donors (including those who have bought merchandise) so far this year, in alphabetical order, without the amounts they gave:

Anonymous – there have been 3 donations made so far by those who wish not to be named

Tony Baker

Max Bell

Neal Campbell

Debbie Chadbon

Liv Chadbon

Sharlom Chaikita

Ross Gibson

Karina Jones

Karen Lee

Gill Makula

David Scott

Lisa Vickers

Chris Walker

Derrick Walker

Terry Walker


Between you all, we have raised ยฃ888.83 – see how far we have still to go to get more PC’s to Pakati by clicking the link below:

Our total balance as of today stands at ยฃ1131.60

**Star Profile** From Pakati, a rising star! Meet Daniel Mususa

Meet Daniel Mususa – he is the latest former student from Pakati to tell his story, and a fascinating one it is too. It begins his home village of Chidawaya, a few kilometres from the two Pakati schools. I have edited his story, but the vast majority is from his own words.

My home at Chidawaya village is about half way between Pakati Primary and Chanetsa Primary schools. I did my Grade 1 and 2 at Pakati, where I was taught by Mrs Kupara and Mr Nyamahohwa. For Grades 3 to 7 I went to Chanetsa, where Mr Muza was my Grade 7 teacher. I remember as a child playing a rural version of football – chukweshe – a ball home-made from plastics. It can still be seen today.

I then went into Form 1 at Pakati Secondary school. I can remember several of my schoolmates, namely Tendai Nemaruru, Ian Mushowo, Lovemore Mhishi and others. I also remember some of my teachers, like Mrs Katonha, and Mr Chifaka (current Head) who taught us Commerce.

I took a practical subject, Fashion and Fabrics, and we were two boys in a class with seven girls. Tendai, my best friend, got the best results in that class.

Fashion and Fabrics block (above)

One of the girls, Josephine Madzivs, sometime later married our History teacher, Mr. Mushaninga.ย My favourite subject was History, and I got an ‘A’ at GCSE O level, thanks to my teacher.

From my first day, I was aleays earliest to arrive at school, no-one would ever beat me to it. In my second term therefore I was given the school bell to ring at all times every day, up to Form 4.ย  That is an everlasting memory for me. Even now i always beat the clock!

Assembly at Pakati Secondary school

At school assembly i was the one to sing a church song before the prayer with my young brother Peter Njerere, till the end of school. I was born a singer even at church, I was the one to lead and still do today.

I finished my Form 4 at Pakat in 2008, and now I am an upcoming gospel artist (see my youtube link above), getting on radio and TV in Zimbabwe to become a celebrity. My stage name is Uncle Danny, from a nickname given to me by one of my teachers. it is amazing having come so far from such a humble school.

It is great to see Daniel making a name for himself in Zimbabwe. Coming from such a background as his shows what is possible…here at Friends of Pakati we will keep an eye on his progress!