CHILDREN Having CHILDREN

CHILDREN Having CHILDREN and/or Getting Married

Abigail, 8th Grade
Abigail is an 8th grade student at WISDOM Christian School. Abigail recently gave birth.
She would like to return to school, but has a problem with childcare.

YOUNG GIRLS getting pregnant and/or marrying at a young age is a serious issue in Zambia. Two problems exist that are interconnected.

One problem occurs when girls have their menstrual periods. In the slum, most do not have access to sanitary pads. When they have their periods, they often miss school. Consequently, girls may miss 3-5 days of school each month. Their local culture does not emphasize female education. So, if a girl falls behind in school, most families are not concerned.

The other problem is teen pregnancy and teenage girls getting married. Some WCS 7th and 8th grade girls have become pregnant and dropped out of school. The solution is complex, but studies show that a lack of information on sex and dropping out/falling behind in school contribute to the problem. Zambia also has a higher morbidity rate for teen girls who become pregnant.

The administration and teachers at WISDOM Christian School are very concerned about these problems. Thanks to a generous donation, WCS held a one-day seminar for the preteens and teen-age girls at WCS. 

One session was lead by the Nurse-in-Charge from a new government clinic. The second session was facilitated by a guidance counselor from Ndola University Teaching College.

About 85 WCS female students attended the sessions. The instructors shared some of the health concerns of sex and pregnancy at a young age, as well as basic information about female menstruation and sexual reproduction. They were also encouraged to maintain abstinence and stay in school. 

Teachers took turns holding
Abigail's baby so that she
could attend the seminar
  













To facilitate better attendance for menstruating girls, the school supplied the girls with disposable sanitary napkins. A supply will also be kept at school for emergencies. 

One of the teachers
is now designated as a counselor for the girls. The girls know that the school is concerned about their welfare and will be available to help.

The next step is to provide a seminar to engage parents/caregivers about the topic and to provide instructions to the teenage boys as well.

The school will continue to address this issue on a regular basis. 

Your donations to WISDOM Christian School make a difference!

Testing CHILDREN of WISDOM

 The 7th graders of WISDOM Christian School are taking tests all week to determine if they are qualified to go on to the 8th grade.

7th Graders

The education department of Zambia has very strict requirements on how they are to be administered.



Their desks were taken to the chapel and had to be spread out. 


Some of the WCS teachers went to a different school to act as proctors. Teachers from another school came to WISDOM to administer the tests for our students.


If a student does not pass, they either repeat 7th grade or drop out. Unfortunately, we have seen several students, especially girls, drop out. Some of the girls have no goals except to be a wife and mother. 

We are working to inspire them to continue their education and go onto grade 8!

School Resumed in Zambia

COVID-19 cases surged in Zambia and schools were closed for about six weeks. They recently resumed. They do not have an option for learning at home - if school is closed, no one is learning!

These 8th graders are working hard to catch up for the time they missed!




8th GRADERS HOME EC

The 8th grade Home Ec class is learning to make tomato jam. As you can see in the pictures below, the students are cooking outdoors on charcoal braziers. They have electric cooktops available, but most people in this school would not have electricity or cooktops in their home. Most families in the slums use braziers every day. They can also cook larger quantities on a brazier than on a cooktop. Home Ec is a required class for boys and girls.


LUNCH

THANKS to the generosity of many donors, we continue to provide lunch four days a week for all of the students.

Our goal is not to only provide food but also nutrition. We include protein in every meal for the students.

Even though their meals may not resemble ours - they are consistent with the tastes of their culture. The kids eat every bite!

The staff cooks for about 450 children on each of those 4 days.

One of the students says a prayer each day before they are served. 

WORK AND PLAY



WHO is excited to be in school?


HOW we love those smiling faces!



A local contractor acquired this playground equipment and donated it to WCS.


TEACHERS


These dedicated teachers are committed to the very best
for the children of WISDOM Christian School.
 













No School Days

Zambia is experiencing a new surge in COVID-19 infections with very few vaccinations. Schools closed across Zambia in mid-June. At this time, they are not expected to re-open until mid-August. [The pictures on this page were taken shortly before this latest shutdown.]

Less than half of one percent of the population have received full vaccination level. TODAY, Zambia received about 150,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine donated by the U.S. We are grateful for the donation! Unfortunately, that will not even cover another 1% of the population. 

One of the WCS teachers contracted COVID after the shutdown, but is recovering nicely. No other teachers or students were infected. We pray that the staff will be able to receive vaccines soon. They do have vaccination clinic sites in Ndola.

Zambia is also experiencing a drop in the value of their currency. This drop causes inflation. The every day cost of living is rising for the people who live there. 


But that drop also makes it more affordable for LIVING WELL to invest in some small construction and maintenance projects at the school. We recently built a new building near the newly painted gate for the school caretaker and for the security guards. 


We also replaced the roof on the kitchen building with a new green metal roof, which will last longer than the previous roof. 

 
This time of the year is the cool, dry season in Zambia. The caretaker makes sure the trees and flowers are watered giving the school beauty amidst the dry conditions.








We are thankful that we are able to continue to pay our faithful teachers even during this shutdown. We can only do this because of our generous donors. 




The students at WISDOM do not have the opportunity for distance learning. They are all anxious to be back in school!













Growing, Growing, Growing

March 1st marked the official launch of the 8th grade at WISDOM Christian School! And WCS offering secondary education.

Many generous donors made it possible to furnish:  

New Uniforms for the 8th Graders

New and Larger Computer Lab 




LIVING WELL set up the first WCS computer lab three years ago with 10 computers. We now have 30! The students are coping material written on the blackboard before they begin their hands-on work on the computers.

Science Lab and Necessary Equipment












Two Sewing Machines for the Home Economics Class


In Zambia, garments that are made by a tailor cost less than ready-made garments in a store. Learning how to use a sewing machine is a valuable skill for men and women.
Lunch

 
We provide a nutritious lunch for all the children four days of every week. 

More Teachers

We shared a photo in our last post of the new teachers. The 8th grader teachers must have a certification on particular  secondary subjects to teach. These teachers also teach with some lower grades as well.

Teachers, lunches, and other resources increase the cost of operating WISDOM Christian School. LIVING WELL raises 100% of the funds to support and develop WCS, and 100% of donations for WCS go to WCS (no administrative fees are taken out).

Be a part of this mission to the CHILDREN of WISDOM!

DONATE NOW!

And Now We Are 14!

WISDOM Christian School grew from 9 to 14 teachers with the addition of the secondary school! 

We ask for your prayers for our staff and students at WCS. The COVID virus has a strong foothold in Ndola now.

Over the weekend, we received this message from our colleague, Brother Charles:
Brother Ed, the surge of the new strain of COVID has come with deadly and devastating effects. Many people I knew personally have so far died in the last 24hrs. It’s unbelievably scary to say the least. May the Lord have mercy and come through for us.

Zambia had been doing well handling the virus until recently. They have mandated many measures but have a hard time with compliance. Their cases are rising very quickly now.

Because of the recent, rampant spread of the virus throughout the country, the government has delayed the start of the new school year until February 1.  In Zambia, it is very difficult to have social distancing in schools. It is not uncommon for an elementary classroom to have 60-80 students.

Brother Charles has selected new teachers for the launch of the secondary school. 

These teachers will teach the new 8th grade class, but will also teach their respective subjects in 6th and 7th grade, along with the current staff. 

See below for the a photo of the new teachers, along with two of the current supervisory teachers. One teacher, Susan (not pictured), who is already on staff, will teach religious education to the 8th graders. They recently gathered for orientation and preparations for the new school year.


TEACHERS (l-r) - Mirriam (current teacher, asst. head teacher), Joseph (integrated science), Sonile (current head teacher), Oliver (math), Lucky (social studies), Eunice (home economics), Doma (business studies,  ICT - Information and Communication Technology)

We are excited to have some men on the teaching staff now! Looking forward to what the future holds as we add another grade each year. 

We will continue to feed all of the children lunch four days per week.


CONTACT US

Ed and Donna Edwards
LIVING WELL
(405)792.2586
info@livingwellokc.org