SHIPMENT FEEDBACK

Angel is a teenager in rural Zambia. His father died when he was young, and then, at the age of six, Angel stopped attending school and started hanging around market places, drinking alcohol with other children. Thankfully, at age 10 he was adopted into our partners’ programmes for vulnerable children and enrolled into grade three. Now, after counselling with voluntary health workers, and support to stay in school, Angel has turned his life around. He is fully committed to school and eager to graduate and train as a pilot!

Angel’s story exemplifies the impact that intervention can make in the lives of orphans and vulnerable children in rural Zambia. The right support can be the difference between a life of destitution, crime and unemployment, and a healthy, thriving future. Our partners, who helped Angel find new hope, run projects for children and youth in health and education. They asked Crossroads for goods to equip and expand their programmes, including school furniture, medical equipment, bikes and educational toys.

 

“It was like a beacon of hope, restoring the school through Crossroads.” – NGO Staff

 

NGO staff visited this community to assess how goods from Crossroads could help them re-open the village school for orphans and vulnerable children. They helped the community establish an action plan to rejuvenate the school and helped some of the poorest families with goods from the shipment, like clothing and shoes.

Staff were shocked when they met Chewe, aged 16, and heard her story. Chewe (pictured above, holding a new pair of shoes from Crossroads’ shipment) has a disability, and at age 8 was forced to drop out of school. She was stigmatised and rejected by many in the community because of her disability.Villagers accused Chewe’s grandmother of performing witchcraft to cause the disability. NGO staff, after listening to people’s concerns, sat down with the family and villagers, and helped them work towards reconciliation, so that Chewe is now able to rejoin the school when it opens (filled with furniture from Crossroads!) in January. They have committed to supporting and following up on Chewe’s progress, along with other vulnerable children in the student body.

Staff are still in the process of allocating the goods from Crossroads’ shipment, but they were able to share feedback from one community that has already benefited. They visited a school for orphans in a rural village, which had sadly been shut down due to lack of management and resources. Staff met with the village leaders and helped map out a plan for re-opening the school, including the promise of goods from Crossroads’ shipment to make the school viable once more. Now, with a planned consignment of furniture and other goods form Crossroads, they are working to open in January, helping some of the community’s most vulnerable children access education that was formerly out of reach. Staff also distributed to clothing and other essentials from the shipment to families in need (above).

 

While we aren’t yet able to share many stories and photos of goods from this shipment in use, we were delighted to hear this initial report of how they have already begun to make a difference.

Reference No. : S4876

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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SHIPMENT FEEDBACK

Just over half of Zambia’s population lives below the international poverty line and more than a third of people are classified as ‘extremely poor’. In rural areas, where the majority of people live, poverty rates are as high as 83%. The effect of this, and the overwhelming reliance on small-scale subsistence farming, means that food security across the country is weak, with around 350,000 people lacking access to a regular food supply.

Our NGO partners in the region believe that education is the key to unlocking Zambia’s potential and they have established a number of schooling programmes, for both children and adults, which seek to see this achieved. In their own words they, “enable communities to break the cycle of poverty and illiteracy through the development of knowledge, values and skills, which enhance creativity, responsibility and healthy lifestyles across the generations”.

“The sustainability of our programme has been enhanced. This shipment has, above all, demonstrated that our school is here to stay” – NGO Director

The shipment is delivered to our NGO partners so the process of organising and distributing can begin.

(Above 1st pic) At our partner’s school, new uniforms are unpacked from their boxes. (Above 2nd pic) As well as school supplies and classroom equipment, other goods were donated in the shipment to be distributed amongst the community at large.

 

The goods that were sent in this shipment have allowed our partners to cement their place in the community, providing the means for more students to attend classes and for better facilities to be provided.

The donation of desks and classroom furniture is saving their school more than US$700 per term, as they no longer need to hire any equipment to conduct lessons, and it has also allowed them to apply for examination centre status. Previously the school would have to spend US$1000 per examination entry, now however; they can run examinations themselves and even earn money by renting the space out to other users.

On top of this bicycles that were sent in the shipment have been donated to students, some of whom had to walk as far as 16km every day to get to school and back. Overall, our partners say, the impact of this shipment has been to increase the community’s hope and confidence, and to prove to them that there is a future in education available to them.

Since the arrival of this shipment the school has begun construction on four new classrooms and, over the next few years, they are planning to establish new classes in computing, life skills and health education. Both our partners and the students they serve are incredibly grateful for the success these goods have allowed them to achieve.

FURTHER IMPACT

“With more chairs and tables in our school we are able to enroll more children. Soon we will introduce two streams for each grade and the number of learners will grow significantly”

“Reading culture has also change and every child is now able to read on book per month. It is encouraging to hear when the pupils tell us about the stories in their books” – NGO Director

Reference No. : S4425

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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SHIPMENT FEEDBACK

When prisoners are released in Zambia, all too often they enter a new state of imprisonment, locked into poverty, as they find nobody will employ them, and they can be shunned by family and community. This leaves thousands of former prisoners without any way to rebuild their lives, even when they are ready to work hard and make a fresh start. “Most of them are destitute,” write our partners.

Life in prison: “The conditions in or places where inmates sleep can bring tears to a person,” wrote our partners. “Their clothes are mostly in tatters. They usually do not know where the next meal is coming from. The wives either turn to prostitution and 90% of the prisoners find their wives re-married and their families scattered when they get released from prison. Many of their children do not go school due to stigma and lack of clothing.”

 

Crossroads shipped to an NGO partner who works in nearly all Zambia’s major correctional facilities, to give prisoners counsel and support, as well as meeting material needs of those who have nobody to bring clothing, blankets or medicines. For prisoners who are released, they help with advice, material goods and small business loans to help people start again.

“You have touched the hearts of prisoners, ex-prisoners and their families. The joy you have put in their hearts will remain for a long time.” – NGO staff

Our shipment was a huge boost to our partners’ operations. It included a large quantity of clothing, which is now being distributed to prisoners who have very little. “Their clothes are mostly in tatters,” our partners said.

A fresh start: New clothes from Crossroads’ shipment are helping prisoners, ex-prisoners and their families rebuild their lives from the ground up. Our partners help the rehabilitation process with counselling, small loans and small business support for ex-prisoners.

 

Those released from prison quite often emerge with no possessions at all, and need support finding their place again in the world, determined to start afresh. New sets of clothing and business suits from our shipment are helping them regain a sense of dignity, and to present well for job interviews or important community events. Our partners also distributed clothing to wives and children left on the outside struggling on low income, often highly stigmatised by their community.

“The offices look very gorgeous…they have been transformed. The organization has saved more than US$7,500 in furniture and computers.” – NGO staff

Also included in the shipment were computers, office furniture and other goods that equipped their offices, helping them do their work better and more efficiently. “This has boosted and motivated moral of the organisational staff,” wrote the director.

Thank you for helping Crossroads serve some of society’s most neglected. We are so grateful to all donors and volunteers who contributed to this shipment.

Offices transformed: Computers, office equipment, furniture and other goods for our partners’ offices were a great encouragement and a strategic investment in their work.

 

Clothing and essentials from the shipment are helping our partners reach out to the children of prisoners and ex-prisoners. Often these children are impoverished, stigmatised and may miss school for lack of clothing. 

Reference No. : S3767

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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Each morning at 4:30am, John used to begin his commute to work. The Zambian father of two would leave his rural village house before sunrise, while his boys were sleeping, and began the long 12 kilometre walk to a job that brought in a very small income to keep the family going. He could have taken the bus, but John says if he paid the bus fare there and back, there wouldn’t be enough money to feed his kids. It grieved him to arrive home each night in the dark, after his two children were asleep, knowing he was missing out on time with his boys that he’d never get back.

When Crossroads’ team sent a shipment to John’s community Zambia, we included a number of bicycles, which our partners had requested for their work. They told us that when John was given one of the bicycles from this shipment, he started cycling to and from work, and it changed the family’s life. “Now he can reach home early and is able to interact with the boys in the evening, which is good for cementing family life,” they said. “John says his kids are very happy to see their father back home, and John is forever grateful to the Crossroads family.” Other bikes were given to families or students who live far from town, like Simfukwe, a secondary student who had till then been walking 8km to and from school each day.

Even as these bicycles are closing the physical distance for their riders in Zambia, other goods from the shipment are closing gaps of their own. Uniforms and donated clothes have helped. So have school desks and chairs (pictured below) which raised the status of our partners’ school, so that instead of sending their students elsewhere to take exams, the school now qualifies as an official examination centre themselves, able to be a resource for surrounding schools.

Computers are helping close the digital gap and books are helping close the literacy gap. “Reading culture has changed,” they said. “Every child is able to read one book per month and it is encouraging to hear what these pupils say about the stories in the books….This shipment has above all demonstrated that our school is there to stay,” they said. “The trust from members of the community has grown significantly.”

 

Interested in sponsoring a shipment like this one, or donating goods to help communities in need? Email partnerships@crossroads.org.hk to start the conversation!

Ref: S4635

 

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SHIPMENT FEEDBACK

While Zambia’s cities are steadily growing economically, up to 78% of Zambians in rural areas are still living in poverty. Simply finding enough to eat each day is a daily struggle for many, so further needs like education, vocational training and reliable employment are difficult to meet.

“What a joy filled our hearts when we saw the truck!” – NGO staff

This shipment injected renewed hope into the programmes run by our partners in rural Zambia, such as supporting community schools, people with HIV and bridging the digital divide with computer education. Computers from Crossroads enabled them to set up an internet café, which is now offering much-needed community services like printing, photocopying and typing, as well as training youth in computer skills and giving local people a place to access to the internet.

“As a result of the shipment, we were able to open an internet café in the community.”

Clothing: Community caregivers have adopted striped dresses from Crossroads’ shipment as their uniform, when they make their rounds visiting clients in villages.

 

IT equipment: Computers from Crossroads have set up an internet café, empowering local youth in computer skills, as well as giving the community a place to access the internet, printing and photocopying, supporting local businesses.

 

Blankets and bedding: 14 year old Monica lives with her brother, aged 22. Their parents died, leaving them battling to make a life for themselves. “On behalf of my family I would like to send appreciation for remembering us in this cold season by giving us blankets,” she said.

 

Books and toys: “As a result of this shipment,” wrote our partners, “our children now have the opportunity to learn how to read. In this part of the world, reading culture is very poor. Thanks to the books, toys and musical instruments, the number of children in this school programme has more than doubled.

 

A corporate team from BNP Paribas worked hard to load the shipment in Hong Kong.

 

Other goods were distributed to some of the area’s most vulnerable, like blankets, clothes, books, school supplies and shoes to 509 orphans and vulnerable children and 350 impoverished families. We’re grateful to all who helped us invest in the future of this Zambian community.


FURTHER IMPACT

“What joy filled our hearts when we saw the truck!” said our partners. The much-anticipated arrival of the container was a day of excitement for the community.

 

70 year old Bettina has lost all 6 of her children and is left with no relatives to support her. She appreciates the ongoing care of Crossroads’ partners, and received a blanket and other goods from this shipment.

 

These community workers visit people living with HIV to offer care, counselling and advice on nutrition. Bicycles from Crossroads’ shipment are helping them visit HIV-affected villagers, sometimes transporting them by bike to their medical appointments.  

 

Widows and elderly people can be left highly vulnerable when younger, stronger family members and breadwinners die of HIV-related diseases. Goods from this shipment helped our partners give much-needed necessities to impoverished, vulnerable elderly in the community.

Reference No. : S3688

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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SHIPMENT FEEDBACK

Zambia is a nation that struggles with widespread poverty, particularly in rural areas. Roughly 60% of the population live below the international poverty line and more than a third of people are classified as ‘extremely poor’. The effect of this, and the overwhelming reliance on small-scale subsistence farming, means that food security across the country is weak, with around 350,000 people lacking access to a regular food supply. Perpetuating these challenges is an insufficient education system and a lack of opportunity for employment, particularly for women.

With a specific focus on supporting development for women and children, our NGO partners in the region run a number of projects that touch on issues of education, health, and job creation. Their work includes:

  • A child care programme to support orphans and vulnerable children;
  • A micro-loan scheme to finance business opportunities for women and young adults;
  • A medical provision service to equip local clinics;
  • And a youth health service to combat the spread of HIV/AIDS and to improve sexual health education.

Had it not been for this shipment students would have been sitting on the floor, but now we can provide a conducive environment in which children and adults can learn” ­– NGO Director

(Above 1st) A class at a community school gets to work enjoying their new desks and chairs. (Above 2nd) A knitting class takes place as part of our partners’ vocational skills course, using tables donated in this shipment.

(Above) Bicycles and other goods are offloaded after arriving with our partners.

Thanks to this shipment, our partners have been able to expand and improve their operations in the region, allowing their guidance and support to touch many more lives. The classroom equipment and computers that were donated have saved them US$12,540, money which had been allocated to the purchase of school supplies, but which can now be used to grow new projects. Furthermore, the improved facilities have allowed them to take on an additional 200 orphans and vulnerable children in grades one to six, and to establish an IT class in which 150 young people have already enrolled.

This shipment has made it possible for our partners to maintain their wide and inclusive reach. The goods that they received will continue to provide a benefit to generations of students going forward, having already impacted an estimated 800 people directly. We, our partners, and the beneficiaries of these goods, are all grateful for your continued support.

PHOTOS OF THE GOODS IN USE

The shipment has really helped to change the situation at our school. We received classroom tables and chairs, computers and other assorted humanitarian goods which have helped not only the organization but also the people we serve in the community” – NGO Director

“Many people have benefited from this shipment including women’s clubs who also received support through the donation of clothes”  – NGO Director

Reference No. :  S4635

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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Educating orphans and training youth

In Zambia, where 80% of rural families are living below the poverty line (UNICEF), this shipment has provided immeasurable support to schools, children’s homes and unemployed youth in rural Zambia. Before the shipment arrived, staff described the lack of resources that is keeping community children in poverty in one of their target schools:

“The room is packed with a sea of small bodies in khaki uniforms, some sprawling on the dirt floor trying to balance their note books and write at the same time. The lucky few who get desks are tightly squeezed together on the on the same bench, elbows touching as they scrawl notes while the teacher talks and writes on the chalkboard. The metal sheet that serves as a roof makes the room hot and stuffy.”

 

When Crossroads’ shipment arrived from Hong Kong, filled with school goods, toys, furniture and other items, excitement at the news spread quickly!

 

52178pre_c08d21d5c6b07e1

“You should have been here to see the tears of joy trickling down faces,” they wrote. “THANK YOU CROSSROADS!!!! Together we are making things happen. Some kids that came to witness were nervous at seeing what was going on. Some of them have never seen such BIG cars, let alone standing side by side.”

Some of these goods have already been distributed, including:

  • Furniture to outfit the community’s library
  • Toys and educational supplies for school children
  • Baby equipment, toys and supplies for an orphanage caring for 0-3 year olds

 

52167scr_bca6df182a86d14

Still more of the goods, though, are now waiting onsite to be installed at the project’s most exciting new endeavour: a new school building (right), which will be able to better cater to the community children’s needs with more space, more classrooms and now, thanks to this shipment, better desks and chairs.

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

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Zambia Snapshot

Zambia Snapshot

Population: 14.83 million

Capital: Lusaka

Zambia is a landlocked country in Southern Africa, with a tropical climate.

74.5% of people in Zambia live below the international poverty line of US$1.25 per day.

40% of children are involved in some kind of child labour

1.1 million people are living with HIV.

map

Walking many miles to school can make it hard for children to access an education. Our partners in Zambia knew that for kids in remote villages where they operate, just getting to class can mean hours walking in difficult weather, on rocky or dusty roads. Some children miss out on school entirely, or don’t finish their education because there’s no school in their village.

zambiabus6

It was a joy, then, when a Hong Kong NGO donated an excellent van to Crossroads, which we could include in a shipment to our partners in Zambia. They’re now using it as a school bus for children in remote villages, making it that much easier to access school, and a brighter future! With enrollment expanding from 85 students to a whopping 400 at the end of 2016, the new ‘bus’ couldn’t have come at a better time.

zambiabus2

“[We were] extremely excited about the bus,” wrote the Zambian staff. “It was so exciting seeing this come out of the container to the jubilation of all the people that were part of the offloading program. A test drive was taken right away. It will be very useful to us in fulfilling our dream of enrolling more kids.”

zambiabus5

zambiabus4

Also included in the shipment were computers, shoes, clothes, school supplies, furniture and toys, many of which will equip new classrooms for the expanding school.

We’re proud of these children and their families for battling the odds to access education, and so grateful to all the volunteers and sponsors who made this shipment possible!

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

Give Now!

Donate to a shipment like this one.

DONATE MONEY

Donate Goods!

Want to donate goods for a shipment like this one?

DONATE GOODS

Zambia Snapshot

Population: 14.83 million
Capital: Lusaka
Zambia is a beautiful, landlocked country in Southern Africa, with a tropical climate.

74.5% of people in Zambia live below the international poverty line of US$1.25 per day.
40% of children are involved in some kind of child labour
1.1 million people are living with HIV.A65

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Helping Prisoners and their Families

 

Life in a Zambian prison can be a dismal experience.

S3767 Zambia project profile-4When prisoners are released in Zambia, all too often they enter a new state of imprisonment, locked into poverty, as they find nobody will employ them, and they can be shunned by family and community. This leaves thousands of former prisoners without any way to rebuild their lives, even when they are ready to work hard and make a fresh start. “Most of them are destitute,” write our partners.

The NGO we are shipping to has worked closely with more than 20,000 prisoners, ex-prisoners and their families in Zambia since they were founded in the 1980’s. To prisoners, they give counsel and support, as well as meeting material needs of those who have nobody to bring clothing, blankets or medicines not provided by the institution. For those who are released, they help with advice, counsel and small business loans to help people start afresh. Children and families of prisoners are often left deeply impoverished, and sometimes shunned themselves. Our partners care for their needs with clothes, blankets and other necessities, as well as financial help for schooling. Crossroads’ shipment will help boost their supplies of goods for distribution, and will support the administration of their programmes.

Shipment includes:

  • Clothing, shoes and blankets for former prisoners and their families
  • Computers for administration and training

 

S3767 Zambia project profile-11Life in a Zambian prison can be a dismal experience. Our partners offer counselling, advice, medical care and support to the prisoners themselves and to prisoners’ families. “They are discriminated against because of their association with prisoners,” write our partners. Often families lose their primary breadwinner when a father and husband is imprisoned.

 

 

This shipment will include goods to aid many more former prisoners and their families, like the children below.

Crossroads Foundation Hong Kong

Give Now!

Donate to a shipment like this one.

DONATE MONEY

Donate Goods!

Want to donate goods for a shipment like this one?

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Zambia Snapshot

Population: 14.83 million
Capital: Lusaka
Zambia is a beautiful, landlocked country in Southern Africa, with a tropical climate.

74.5% of people in Zambia live below the international poverty line of US$1.25 per day.
40% of children are involved in some kind of child labour
1.1 million people are living with HIV.

A65