Namumu Orphanage Center
Dear Friends and Partners,
Nancy Collins, PC(USA) regional liaison, Katie (her friend), and I drove to Siavonga to visit Namumu Orphanage Center (NOC) in March. Upon arrival, we toured the campus with Edwin Luneta, the administrator and met the new director, Phanuel Simamba. Highlights of the visit and programs can be broken down as follows:
CHILDREN: There are 58 young people in residence at Namumu, 36 boys and 22 girls. This includes 25 boys and 16 girls in Basic School, which is a 40-minute walk one way, and 17 kids who attend the Community School on-site. The boys and girls have planted their own cornfields of about an acre each. The corn is doing quite well. From what I observed, the children seemed to be happy, well-fed, and content. They are certainly moving “from desperation to hope,” experiencing the love of Jesus Christ and growing in the faith in Bible study and worship.
SCHOOLING: There are currently 320 students in the Community School with 39 in grade seven, ten of whom are Namumu residents. Grace Franyanga has been appointedto teach at the school by the government. Her husband, Moses, has been there since the beginning of Namumu and is now the lead teacher. He is a fine, dedicated Christian leader. This is a very helpful move for the budget, as it is one less teacher for NOC to pay, and a wonderful move for Grace, who no longer has to walk into town daily to teach.
CLINIC: Savior, the girls’ dorm mother, is still acting as the nurse for the clinic. She gets some help from Kebby, the boys’ dorm parent. Neither of them is a registered nurse. The government does send some drugs and will send a nurse, if NOC can provide housing.
COMMUNITY SUPPORT: I was impressed with the increased amount of support for NOC coming from the community. The director is working with the local groups, helped by Sam Cross (until he left in January) and Vinod, a new Volunteer Service Opportunity (VSO) person from India who works with the ex-pats in the area.
Some members of the community provided playground equipment for the children, and the Siavonga Rotary Club gave paint for the school building and the boys’ dorm. The older boys provided the labor. The community is building another classroom and, when the roof blew off two classrooms last year, they gave $640 for re-roofing. Individuals and groups have given $255 in January and $510 in February for feeding the children.
INCOME GENERATING ACTIVITIES (IGAs): The kapenta fishing has been the most successful of the numerous IGAs at Namumu. Gifts from supporters purchased two boats, and they are able to sell all the kapenta fish they catch. They often keep some of the fish to feed the children and in January and February, they had a net profit of over $1,000 each month. They would like to have a third boat to expand the capacity of this IGA.
The poultry project is growing. With funds from The Outreach Foundation, they are expanding the flock and a local resort will buy all the eggs the chickens can produce. There is ample space and a ready market.Namumu would like to expand the farming enterprise but needs irrigation to do this. They have submitted a proposal to the USAID to pump water from the lake 400 meters away but have not yet had a response. The same resort that buys the eggs has offered vegetable seeds and fertilizer for the garden if they are allowed to buy the vegetables that are produced.
Some of the IGAs have not been successful. Due to lack of funds and personnel problems, the welding and carpentry workshops have been suspended. NOC is working hard to create ways to become more self-sustaining. We pray that their efforts will continue to bear much fruit.
FINANCE: NOC continues to struggle with their budget as costs to care for the children rise and gifts do not keep pace with the increases.
We believe that this is a very important and viable ministry of rescuing orphans and vulnerable children in one of the poorest districts in Zambia. The director and staff are working hard to increase the amount of funding to be raised locally, but it will not be enough to support this work. Please pray and consider what you and/or your church congregation can give to help provide for the needs of these precious, vulnerable, and needy children as they grow and learn about the love of Jesus.
William Warlick, Mission Staff for Southern Africa
The Outreach Foundation