Category Archives: zambia

Busy first day

Category : News , zambia

Day one started with a visit to Miombo Beekeeping Cooperative which consists of 11 women and developed from our donation of two hives. We are looking to support them as they move to 12 and then 100 hives over the next year.

Meeting of beekeeping cooperative Lillian in front of topbar hive

We also had a planning meeting with the Siavonga District Education Board Secretary and some of her team. She introduced us to the District Commissioner who is fully supportive of our work.

  1. With district commissioner With Education board members

We even met the local Chief in the car park!

His Highness Chief Simamba

Haiku Day

Category : zambia

LIt up view of Siamwiinga school at night





Power for rural schools
A boost for lifelong learning
For pupils old and young

Environmental Competition

Category : News , zambia

Our friends at Siavonga High School are in the final ten of a World bank environmental competition called “Plant Trees, not Plastic”. The top 5 will each get $1000 so they need your vote on the survey below (They’re number 5).

A desperate need for desks

Category : Training , zambia

The new Zambian government is prioritising education. They have made primary and secondary education free for all which has encouraged an influx of extra pupils into schools. Along with this they are increasing the number of teachers and helping them to be better qualified. Schools were already short of classrooms and of desks in particular. This is even more the case now.

On our last day in Siavonga, we had a meeting with DEBS (District Education Board Secretary) to identify the schools most in need of solar power and to report back on the internet capabilities of the schools taking part in the Learning to Learn Project. She mentioned that girls often stay away from school rather than sit on the floor. We discovered that Siavonga High School has a carpentry department which, amongst other things, refurbishes old desks, adding new wood to their metal frames. We are looking at ways to help them provide this service to local schools, many of which have old frames available.

SHS carpentry departmentHoward with Carpentry teacherstoreroom with woodrefurbished desksHoward with SHS head teacher

More rural schools

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Category : zambia

At Sianyoolo we were pleased to see the school in line of sight with two powerful masts. They should easily be able to connect in to the fortnightly mentoring sessions. Two teachers from this school will be involved.

Sianyoolo Fidelis and Withus

Finally we visited Kabuyu Primary. Mr McCloud from the school regularly joins our zoom training but there are connectivity issues at the school which we will be working to solve.

KabuyuDEBS landcruiser

Visit to rural schools

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Category : News , zambia

Thanks to Ms Ephe Hambabangolwe, the District Education Board Secretary, we secured the use of the official landcruiser to visit some of the other schools involved in the Learn to Learn project.

We first visited Siamwiinga School where we had installed solar panels in March 2021. We hadn’t actually checked out the installation due to COVID restrictions so it was good to see everything in good condition.

Siamwiinga PrimaryRaspberry Pi computers

Teachers and pupils helped mount an external wireless antenna which will boost internet signal for the school.

setting up equipment wireless antenna at Siamwiinga feeding cables to extend signal interested spectators

Next on to Chaanga, a large secondary school with solar panels for power and for a water pump.

The headteacher was very positive about the project and felt it is very much needed. The school has weekly boarding places for vulnerable girls who return home at weekends.

water tower solar chaanga

Some of the teachers were unfamiliar with the Raspberry Pi 400 computers that we’d supplied so Howard spent some time demonstrating its features. We also invited them to join in our weekly ICT tutorial sessions.

We supplied a router for which they will  need to purchase data bundles.


A boat trip to Munyama

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Category : News , zambia

On Wednesday we visited one of the less accessible schools, Munyama. When Mr Richard Mabunde tried to get home from Monday’s training by motorbike he found himself in a flood and needed local children to help him get the bike through.We chose to go by speedboat which was the other option and were lucky to find the lake calm and without waves.

motorbike in flooded stream boat trip
Our main purpose was to check out the best place in the school area to access internet. Munyama is one of the schools chosen to pilot a learning to learn scheme which will mentor teachers in ways to encourage pupils to attend and achieve in school. We were pleased to see good care being taken of the solar panels and RACHEL learning resources being connected and used.

school motto
We were treated to fish and nshima before listening to the very talented Munyama School Choir. These are very impressive young singers, coached by a volunteer teacher.

Learning to Learn

Regarding our Learning to Learn project, we’re very pleased to have received this from one of the Educational Standards officers from Siavonga District.
“We are so excited to have the project in our district and eager to work with you. We will offer all support needed as District Education Board Secretary Office to ensure the success of your program.”

Thanks for making this possible go to Welsh Government for their  award of a grant under the WalesandAfrica Grant Scheme.

Learning to Learn project

Category : zambia

Thanks to funding from Welsh Government through their Wales and Africa Grant Scheme, we are proceeding with our pilot Learning to Learn Project.

Its aim is to motivate all pupils, but particularly girls, to attend school regularly, have a more positive attitude to school and to themselves, have high aspirations and and achieve their full potential.

We will do this through online sessions with a selected group of teachers showing them activities and tactics to create a different learning environment.

The grant covers the necessary IT equipment to facilitate these sessions and enable monitoring and recording of results.

Tablets and Pi 400s

Physical Computing Using Raspberry Pi

Category : Training , zambia

Giakonda Solar Schools is training teachers in Zambia via Zoom. Current course is physical computing using Raspberry Pi . Yesterday we posted off some electronics kits for the group to use in the next step of the training. These little kits cost just £5.
CamJam control kit