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News

UK Aid Direct funds ZOA-UK to reduce girls’ absenteeism

ZOA-UK is excited to announce it has received grant funding from UK Aid Direct to run a two-year project to reduce girls’ absenteeism by improving their access to sanitary products.

Around the world many girls are missing school because they cannot afford sanitary products. Girls we work with in Zambia miss 30 days of school each year – half due to their period*. ZOA-UK has secured a Small Charities Challenge Fund grant funded with UK aid from the UK Government to run a project to provide girls with reusable sanitary pads, helping them remain in the classroom and progress in education.

To create lasting change in deprived communities understanding amongst boys and girls about the mystery of menstruation must be improved. That’s why our local partners are running workshops for girls and boys, volunteers, parents/guardians, teachers, community leaders and peer educators to overturn stigma and superstitions such as;

  • Sometimes boys menstruate – believed by 9% of girls and 10% of boys*
  • Menstruating girls should not add salt to food because they can cause a cough in men – believed by 39% of girls and 25% of boys*
  • Burning or burying used sanitary materials leads to infertility – believed by 30% of girls and 20% of boys*

The funding from UK Aid Direct runs until 2020 at which point we will have delivered workshops for 1,000 children and youths, provided 500 girls with access to healthy menstrual hygiene management messaging, sensitised 245 carers, provided 430 girls and 580 of their female relatives with reusable sanitary pads, and improved hand washing facilities at two community schools.

*Results of ZOA-UK’s baseline survey on Menstrual Hygiene Management, October 2018.

 

Independence Day Appeal

To mark Zambia’s Independence Day on 24 October we are launching an appeal to raise funds for our vital work feeding orphaned and vulnerable children in Zambia. Many disadvantaged children in schools in Zambia struggle to focus in class, simply because they are hungry. Providing a nutritious daily meal helps to improve their concentration, school attendance and attainment.

We must raise funds for simple ingredients such as mealie meal, chicken, beef, beans and vegetables, that the staff and volunteers working for our grassroots’ partners can transform into nutritious meals – that children rely on. It costs us just £1.92 a month or £23 a year to feed a child. Please help by donating here. Thank you.

 

Our appeal on BBC Radio 4

Journalist and broadcaster, John Sergeant, presented our appeal on BBC Radio 4, featuring Susan Nawila, pictured. After finding twin babies abandoned near her home, Susan founded a community club that now cares for over 100 children, helping them access education and improve their chances of living independent lives. You can still donate to ZOA by using the DONATE button above or calling +44 (0) 1223 890162. All donations will help community groups, like Susan’s club, educate and care for orphaned and vulnerable children.

 

Meet Grace Chisomo

Grace is being supported to complete her nursing and midwifery course this year. Zambia has a desperate need for qualified health professionals so when we discovered that Grace was at risk of dropping out of her course after her family suffered a tragedy that left them unable to afford her fees, we stepped in to help. Grace is now looking forward to completing her course and welcoming many more children into the world.

 

Floyd’s story

Working hard to complete their education – Twavwane’s kids