It was the fall of 2013. A school teacher in Nooki—a community in a remote agricultural area of Zambia, Africa—was frustrated. He dedicated his life to teaching the local school children, only to have their schooling abruptly ended at the 7th grade, with no secondary school nearby or affordable for the families. He called WISE.
The next year, WISE Zambia’s fledging scholarship program included three students from Nooki. Soon, the success of these three trailblazers resulted in virtually every 7th grade student in Nooki seeking a WISE scholarship.
Word also spread to other communities. Unfortunately, many of these communities are even more remote than Nooki, inaccessible other than by a four-wheel drive. Last year (2019) alone, WISE turned down requests from four separate villages/community schools to provide scholarships and support for their students. But these villages were unreachable without a four-wheel drive, which we currently lack. We were unable to provide these students in these communities with the educational opportunities they deserved.
The ability to travel to the communities where we work is imperative to the success of our programs. Our staff travels to these communities to:
- Meet and coordinate with the local headteacher and staff;
- Meet with prospective students and their families;
- Provide school and personal supplies needed by the students;
- Provide support to the students’ families; and
- Provide for mentoring and other assistance programs during term breaks.