Trackson, a 10 year old from Lusaka, Zambia, spends each morning walking a dirt road to attend his rural school two hours away. Attending the Nayamba Community School, Trackson feels fortunate to receive both an education and Rise Against Hunger meals as a part of a school feeding initiative in partnership with Anchor of Hope Charities.
For Trackson’s neighbors and family, regular, nutritious meals are rare. His community has just one water well to serve everyone, and despite the fact that subsistence farming serves as the main way for families to feed themselves, the agricultural yields often fail to meet daily nutritional needs. With the lack of proper water and food, there is a high rate of childhood illnesses including cholera and malaria.
Benefitting from daily meals at his school, Trackson’s grades have improved and he enjoys attending his classes. In addition to improving his grades, he has also improved physically, gaining weight and growing taller compared to his previous term.
Lianne Collett, the administrator who established Trackson’s school, now oversees the education of 320 children.
She shares, “So far we have seen a positive impact in the community due to the high number of children whose health has improved. Absenteeism has decreased by 95%, because the children are not missing school to go and do piece work in order to get food. More guardians and parents have come on board to support the program and have seen the way the other children have become healthy-looking. “
She adds, “Our school Chief, famously called ‘Banene’ (meaning ‘grandmother) by every child and members of staff, is very supportive of the program. She is a very positive woman and works very well with the children. The children prefer her to give them food and if she is not around, they are not as happy. She is gentle and kind and we have her total support.”
Kathy Harding, Anchor of Hope Charities’ Team Lead shares,
The only chance these children have to grow up and make something of their lives is to attend school. A school that can address their health and well being along with their academic needs. This program allows us to deliver life-changing, even life-saving, support for the children of Zambia.