I love getting stories from Serenje of amazing individuals who are being impacted by the support they are receiving and are transforming their lives.
Patricia is 16 years-old and has been supported by the project since its inception in 2008. She is the only girl in the family of 6. Patricia’s dad died in 1996 when she was only 6 months old leaving her a single orphan. Her mother is 43 years and a peasant farmer who has benefited from the project food security support. She was only 27 years old when her first husband died. She remarried and had the two sons who are in grade 3 but the husband left because he could not accept responsibility of supporting 4 children from another man.
Patricia came onto the EFZ educational support when she was in grade 6 at Kankoso Basic School which is near her village. She was hard working and noticed by her head teacher who had this to say, “Patricia is an amazing girl who is so determined and ever ready to do any piece work to buy school books and pens. She is focused even though she is an orphan and has been coming out number 1 in class. When she sat for grade 7 examinations, she got the highest marks in the whole district of Serenje which was (825 marks out of 1,000). She was recommended by the District Education Board to go to a boarding school within Central Province but she did not have finances to quickly send her acceptance letter and by the time EFZ got the news, it was late even though we still pursued the opportunity for her to be in a boarding facility. Patricia’s option was to go to a local Basic school where she passed grade 9 and was accepted at a High School within Serenje town. Her grade 9 results were again exceptional as she was among pupils with the highest marks in the District. Due to her good academic performance in school, one of her former teachers sacrificed to stay with her in the township near to the High School (Ibolelo Secondary School who Garth Hill College is partnered with).
Patricia is very clear about her future goal, which is to be a medical Doctor so that she can help sick people. She is thankful for all that the project has contributed towards her education as well as her mother for the agric inputs support for food security and household income. Her mother also received two goats to facilitate educational needs of her children. Patricia is proud of her hard working mother and always goes to her village during holidays to help her.
What an incredible reminder of the lives that are being changed, one by one, in Serenje. Let's be praying for Patricia and her family, and many like her, who are doing all they can to build a different future.