Hello again Zambia!
Arrived safely in Lusaka after a long tiring journey. Thanks Ben Mwanza for picking us up from the airport.
After dropping our bags at Kalulu Backpackers, we went to visit our good friends at Muhunya Solar to check out the equipment we had bought from them. As usual they were able to advise us on the three installations we are doing this visit.
Returned to the hostel for a meal and a Mosi and met with a world possible volunteer Peter and an agricultural machinery lecturer Chimangeni. We hope to be able to work with both of them to bring the resources of RACHEL to a wider community.
Wednesday 28th Feb
Early start for our journey down to Siavonga in the van with the solar equipment, arriving about 12.30 at Siavonga High School. We unloaded batteries and solar panels there, then headed off to Zaninge Guest House to sort the rest of the kit and unpack.
In the evening we met with Chali Mangalesi (Digital Ambassador at SHS) and Geoffrey Phiri of Siavonga Nutrition Group to go over the program.
Thursday 1st March
Met with the new District Education Board Secretary Ephe in her office. Chali and Geoffrey accompanied us and DEBS also invited her standards officers and Mr Rex Moonga the Resource Centre Head to join the group.
We introduced ourselves and explained the background and aims of Giakonda Solar Schools. Howard outlined our plans for this visit and demonstrated RACHEL on the Raspberry Pi. With her background in adult education, DEBS was keen to use such offline resources to help parents become better educated.
We talked about the proposed project of setting up beekeeping in interested schools and using that to provide better employment than charcoal burning.
Then we held a discussion in the resource centre to firm up dates for training, solar installations and meetings. Mr Moonga will communicate these to teachers and DEBS. We are relying on the three solar schools to pick up the equipment prior to their installation date. Travel to two of them is very challenging this time of year and we are hoping to possibly go by boat.
We spent the afternoon in Siavonga Primary School where there was a problem with their HP server which meant 18 of their PCs were not functioning.
We also managed to buy in the market some 12volt LED strip lights to install in the solar schools.