Every child deserves a solid foundation. Kiwis are helping to provide this foundation by contributing to the building of the first two pre-schools in Chikondwelelo, Zambia.

On a recent trip to Zambia, ChildFund CEO Paul Brown visited Chikondwelelo to see the progress being made on the pre-schools. He reports back on his visit and the building progress:

Chikondwelelo is the area little Sarah calls home. Our hope is that, with Kiwi support, we can build these schools in time for Sarah to start pre-school in 2012, when she will be 4 years old.

The construction of the two pre-schools is well underway and we are confident that classes will begin in January as scheduled. Sarah will get what her big sister never did – a solid pre-school education, the best foundation for a child to build their life and dreams on.

It was great meeting the community and seeing how everyone is working together to build these pre-schools. Parents are excited that their children will get to attend pre-school.

The land on which the two pre-schools will be built has been identified and cleared of scrub. The foundations have been dug at both locations and construction of the walls has begun. One of the pre-schools is being constructed in Kapoche, next to the Special Education Needs school that Kiwi support funded in 2010.

Materials such as cement, iron sheets, reinforcing rods, and roofing materials have been sourced and delivered. We have also sunk a borehole in each location, ready to provide clean, safe drinking water for pre-school children and also for the wider community.

Local men have been busily making enough bricks to build the classroom walls. Parents are enthusiastic about the new schools and are eager to help meet timeframes. Many fathers have taken time from their usual work to help with manual labour and mothers are contributing by cooking meals for the labourers.

We still need to finish construction of the buildings, install roofing, water tanks and solar panels and build latrines for boys and girls at both locations.

Each classroom will be outfitted with desks, chairs, blackboards, and learning materials like books, pencils, and educational toys. Outside each classroom we will also set up playgrounds for the children to play in a safe environment. 10 volunteer teachers will also benefit from a teacher training programme to help them develop lessons and achieve the best learning outcomes for the children in their care.

Everybody in Chikondwelelo is working hard to ensure construction is completed before the end of the year. Thanks to your generous support, Sarah will have the chance to attend preschool next year.

I look forward to updating you once more when construction is complete so you can see just how much your gift is continuing to change lives.

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