Namumu Orphanage Center - October 2017 Update
Some of you have traveled to Namumu in Siavonga, on the edge of Lake Kariba, and fallen in love with that place and even more so with the children being cared for in that place. God has changed so many lives since Namumu’s inception. Frank Dimmock and I visited Namumu Orphanage Center in August and would like to update you on the situation there.
The vulnerability of children and families in the Siavonga district of southern Zambia is obvious and has been affirmed during our visits and by others we met there. During the three days we spent at Namumu this summer, we met with the children; Mr. Simamba, the director; Ms. Rudia Mwela, the nurse; the Namumu Board; and the government District Commissioner. They expressed appreciation for the support given to the Namumu children and addressed some of the concerns for the children’s well-being.
We also met with the board of management and went to see the fishing boats on the lakeshore. Several years ago, The Outreach Foundation and other supporters assisted in the purchase of four fishing boats for Namumu to generate income with the goal of creating financial sustainability for the orphanage. In recent years the fishing industry has struggled, and Namumu is no longer earning a profit from the business. In an effort to learn more, we made a follow-up visit to Mr. Nasilele Walueita from the district fisheries department. We learned that the fish population is being rapidly depleted due to uncontrolled fishing, lower water levels, and a reduction in breeding due to climate change. The maintenance and management of the Namumu boats has also been a challenge. Mr. Walueita explained that the government is embarking on a new program of fish farming in ponds and controlled areas (cages and nurseries). He encouraged the Namumu management to seek government assistance and advice on how to develop fish ponds for income generation. In addition to developing fish ponds, we also discussed expanding vegetable gardens and planting trees for the sustainability of the ministry of Namumu to vulnerable children and their families.
There are currently 26 children living at Namumu. During the next five years, Namumu will focus on placing children with families and in boarding schools. Access to quality education will remain a high priority. We reviewed the grade reports of the primary school children from the recent term. Their performance was impressive. The four Namumu students in grade seven were among the top five in their class of 38 pupils. High grades are essential for them to qualify for the next level in their schooling.
We had the opportunity to visit the Siavonga secondary school and met the headmaster, Mr. Shandelea and his deputy, Mr. Michelo. One of the current Namumu girls is in tenth grade. Of the 1,144 students from grades 8-12 in the school, 560 are boarding students. Placing more Namumu children in boarding secondary school remains an important goal.
We also met with Rev. Charles Ngoma, Namumu board treasurer and pastor from the Reformed Church. Rev. Ngoma is the coordinator of a fellowship of more than 15 Christian pastors from the district. The fellowship meets regularly to discuss community issues and challenges and advocate for change. Having local community connections and assistance is essential for supporting vulnerable children and families. Several local businesses and other organizations like the Rotary Club of Siavonga have also shown interest and support for Namumu.
Frank and I had the joy of meeting several former Namumu children who are now working or continuing their education. We met Wendy Chikumbula, who is finishing her teacher’s training; Malachi Habasimbi who is in his third year at Justo Mwale University; Florence and Christopher who are in their first year of medical training at Chreso University; and Victoria, a third-year nursing student. Grateful for the benefits they received from Namumu, they are in the process of initiating a Namumu Alumni Association. They would like to give back by being role models and offering encouragement to those currently at Namumu.
We left Zambia with the hope that these children may continue to be nurtured and placed in families as we help them through education. The Namumu Board is going to meet to set strategies for the way forward – we will let you know when we receive their report. In the meantime, please keep the children in your prayers as we partner with them through education, the only way to offer them hope and a bright future.
Your partnership in this work is appreciated. We cannot do it without you. Be blessed as you bless these children with your gifts,
Frank Dimmock and Ebralie Mwizerwa
Read more about Namumu Orphanage Center by clicking HERE.
The Outreach Foundation is seeking $60,000 (or $5,000 per month) to feed, clothe, offer medical care, and educate children at Namumu.