Posted on October 26, 2017
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… Christine’s story
In 1998, ACT started funding Christine’s education. She was 10 years old at the time and the youngest of seven children. Her family lives in Chingola, Zambia in the Northern Copperbelt, close to the border with the Republic of Congo.
Christine’s father died in a copper mine accident when she was six years old. Her mother, Elizabeth who until then was at home with the children, had struggled to find employment to provide for her family. This at a time when the adult employment levels in the region was about 50 per cent. Elizabeth sewed sacks into bags, which she sold to traders who used the bags for transporting maize. Even then, her earnings barely covered the rent, and was insufficient to pay for food. Because of lack of funds, her older sons were withdrawn from school to earn income working as labourers to supplement their mothers’ earnings. Education at the time was not free in Zambia.
Christine meanwhile started primary school, but her mother was unable to guarantee that she would complete primary school because of their difficult financial situation. None of Christine’s older siblings completed primary school education.
In 2998, ACT started working in partnership with Life Gospel Fellowship, who then recommended Christine to ACT for support. With funding from ACT Christine began to blossom and showed good progress completing both primary school and was admitted to Chingola High School, where she went onto to complete her secondary education. Her teachers reported positive change in Christine, who was happy, confident and performing very well in her schoolwork.
Meanwhile her Mother Elizabeth could concentrate on developing her trade with ACT widows support and provide better for her seven children. ACT also started supporting her youngest child, Stephen, thereby relieving her mind of the burden.
Christine took an interest in fashion design and sought to find work in Zimbabwe after completing secondary school in 2009, but returned to Chingola soon after as things did not work out, as she expected.
Nearly, 20 years on, Christine now lives in Lusaka, Zambia as a secretary at a local company. Christine has signed up as a member of the ACT Alumni, and rightly so, as she is the first ACT sponsored child. The ACT alumni was set up with the aim to connect and integrate past sponsored children who have completed their studies and are waiting to give back to their communities.
To find out how you can help a child like Christine, click here