What's New at the School

Contact information for the school:

Mr. Mulenga
Phone:  (0026)  0977603367 or 0965512299
Email:  lionsblindschool2005@yahoo.com

November 2015

Effective immediately, Yvonne Currin and Heather Kinley are no longer associated with the school or fundraising efforts.  We wish the school well.

October 2015

The students returned to school on August 17th and thanks to the continued support of the Ndola Christian Fellowship, food was purchased to get the school year off on the right foot.

Faithful supporter, South African musician, Harry Curtis, also sent 3,000 South African Rand to the school from an event, and hopes to visit the school in the next few months.  The last time he came, the students were enraptured with his music and look forward to his return.
Harry visiting the school in  May 2014

As agreed earlier in the summer, because of increasing issues with the goats all were sold and funds directed towards purchasing more chooks and hopefully ducks and pigeons that will be used for breeding and eventually for food.  

The additional fowl will be housed in the former goat enclosure, and a much needed water source was added to the area.  The students have done well raising chooks, so we will build on that success as the school strives towards becoming more self sustaining.

All was going well until a large number of chooks were stolen in the middle of the night.  The security guard admitted under police questioning that he was sleeping at the time of the roberry and teachers in residence (who are visually impaired) were not aware of any disturbance.  

Mr. Mulenga, the school's head master, implemented increased security measures and directed the school's handyman to reinforce the chook's hut to prevent this from happening again.

Replacing the chooks would have necessitated funds being re-directed from the food account which would have been difficult to do.  Fortunately, Gary and Marie Langham from Kitwe, (BLD Copperbelt Ltd) stepped forward and donated 1500 kwacha to purchase the new supply of chooks.  As Marie said, "We were happy to help and feel it was just a nice opportunity to support Yvonne's (the school's long time fundraiser) great work in assisting the Ndola School for the Visually Impaired."

It is hard to fathom how someone could steal chickens in the dead of night at a children's school for the blind.  But what is very clear is the generosity of wonderful people like our donors who remind us how good the world really is. 

"We are each made for goodness, love and compassion.  Our lives are transformed as much as the world is when we live with these truths."
                                                                                                           Desmond Tutu

July 2015

Time passes, but those who have visited the Ndola Lions School for the Visually Impaired rarely forget it.  Stuart Sharp's relationship with the school began almost 15 years ago when he sponsored a concert and large sporting event which raised awareness of the school and helped childen with disabilities in the Copperbelt region.  

Over the last few months, Stuart has continued his support and recently sent generous donations from Mike Stout, Anne Marie Piercy, Anthony Wade and himself.  Some funds will be used to plant maize and vegetables to deal with the ongoing food shortages, and the rest will be earmarked for further self sustaining initiatives.  

Stuart has lived, and continues to live a facinating life.  He is not only a musician and composer, but he is also a writer and recently published his book, "The Snow People" on Kindle.  We are so grateful to Stuart, as well as those who felt his passion and answered his call to action.

Most people have heard the saying, "kids will be kids".  Well, for the school it also refers to the goats who have called the school their home.  Project Baaa began in June 2014 when five goats were purchased by donors who named them after beloved family members.  The goal was to teach students to care for livestock and to provide another source of revenue.  Since then, the herd has more than doubled and with that, so have some of the challenges.

Goats are naturally inquisitive and it was not unusual to find them wandering into classrooms or dorms, as well as reeking havoc in the vegetable garden.  A fence was built around their hut which worked perfectly in the rainy season when the enclosure had plenty of food and water.  But once the rains stopped, the vegetation dried up and they had to be released in order to graze as expanding the fencing was cost prohibitive.  Because of this, the garden wasn't planted as it was just a matter of time before the goats took over.
Alan and Anton cared for the goats over the Christmas holidays
Serious discussions with the deputy headmaster, Mr. Mulenga, took place and the decision was made to sell the goats to local farmers.  It was hard selling the stock as many of the goats were treated as pets, but the goals were reached.  At Christmas time, two of the older students, Anton and Alan, agreed to stay at the school to care for the animals showing leadership and commitment, and with double the number of goats, the money will enable the funding of other self sustaining projects in the new school year.

Students are home for the summer holidays and hopefully they are enjoying time with their families.  In a few weeks, they will return and there will be lessons to be learned in and out of the classroom.

"Play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning".
                                                                           Fred Rogers, Children's TV show host

November 2014

Yvonne Currin, long time school supporter, visited the school last week to oversee the latest donations and to discuss future needs.  She also gave a tour to a representative from the Ndola Christian Fellowship so he could report back on how their monthly committment of 1,000 kwacha was being used.  

A highly respected local organization, the Mary Begg Community Clinic, has also committed to a monthly donation of 1,000 kwacha as well and have made three donations consisting nof dressed chickens, mealie meal, rice, cooking oil, sugar, washing powder, and vaseline for the children.  

These monthly food donations help tremendously, and enable limited resources to be directed to other ways to assist the students.

Yvonne also took photos while visiting the school --- it is true that a picture is worth a thousand words:

Mrs. Sue Shone, on behalf of Olympic Milling (who is a generous school supporter), provided baths when their block of flats at Dolphin Court were renovated.  The baths are being used by students and house mothers for doing laundry.  Up until now, they could only use the ablution block basins and so this will make laundry duties much easier for them.

Mr. Chisala with the donated bath tubs
Project Baaa has been a huge success and the goats along with the latest offspring are well.  The school is keen to increase the herd but will need to enlarge the enclosure where they are kept at night.  Anyone interested in helping with this initiative is asked to contact us at nlsfvi@gmail.com 
Yvonne said she was amazed and relieved to hear the goats don't eat the vegetables in the student tended garden or the laundry that is dried on the hedges!

Sightsavers International have donated cement and sand to repair the sidewalks that are in disrepair.  This will solve the safety issue of sight impaired students and staff walking on the broken sidewalks.  
The school's staff repaired the sidewalks with the donated materials
A very exciting initiative to help the students as they move forward academically and into the workplace comes from a donation by the Zambian Information Communication Technology Authority (ZICTA).  They donated 10 computers and workstations with JAWS (Job access with speech) software that provides verbal commands for the user.  

The computer room was renovated to provide air conditioning, and training has been promised by ZICTA, but in the meantime, teachers with some computer knowledge are helping the students begin their orientation.   Internet has also been provided so enables students to do research like their sighted peers in other schools are able to do.
A huge step forward for the school

And in the spirit of "boys will be boys", Yvonne saw two young boys having fun wrestling. 

It is a reminder to all of us who hold the students dear to our hearts......

Yes....they are students and need an education.  But at the end of the day they are children who have been dealt a tough hand in life, and we have a chance to make a difference in their lives now, and in the future.

That is why we have such faithful donors and supporters....and that is why we need you.

"All kids need is a little help, a little hope and somebody who believes in them."
                                                                       Magic Earvin Johnson, Basketball player

October 2014

Friendship and Fellowship

The Ndola Christian Fellowship (NCF) has once gain demonstrated their goal of outworking their faith in practical ways to glorify God and out of gratitude to Him.  They have done so by easing the constant stress of feeding the school's 150 students by committing to a monthly donation of 1,000 kwacha (approximately $200 US).

Mr. George Chisala, the school's headmaster, gave a sigh of relief and his trademark smile when told of the donation.  "We have been grateful for help given by NCF to the school in the past.  Since adding Grade 10 this year, the pressure to provide food for more students has been very stressful.  This ongoing commitment by NCF is very much appreciated. "

Members of NCF gathered at Nsobe Game Camp for a retreat in September 2014

Glenys Shone and her husband, Kevin, are deacons at NCF and have been long time personal supporters of the Ndola Lions School for the Visually Impaired.  Over the years, they have shared the school's challenges and have individually, as well as jointly with NCF, helped in a variety of ways.

When we give cheerfully and accept gracefully, we are all blessed.
                                                                       Maya Angelou
September 2014

A joyful beginning

When the school was originally built in 1974, it was constructed to house 80 students. The new school year started with the number swelling to 150 and now includes grade 10.   With few options for visually impaired children in Zambia, this school is vitally important to the children and their families.

With limited government funding, the worries of how to feed the students often overshadowed the scholastic challenges.  Just two years ago, most of the students were sent home because there was not enough food to feed them.

Recently, the news of food donations reached the school and the feeling of relief was palpable.  Two commitments to provide ongoing supplies of food for the school lifted the weight off of headmaster, George Chisala, and all those who have witnessed the stress of not having enough to feed the children.

A commitment of weekly food deliveries from a generous $4,500 U.S. joint grant from the Siksha Foundation and the Ndola Round Table Chapter 16, and a promise from a local fellowship church of a 1,000 Kwa (approx. $200 U.S.) a month donation for food.  This has ensured the students will be fed and efforts can now be directed towards educating and preparing the children for life after they leave the school.  An update of details regarding these donations will be made in the coming weeks.

More joyful news welcomed the students as they returned from their summer break with news that a baby goat was born - an offspring from Project Baaaa!  The goats are healthy and have adapted very well to their new environment.  Two of the older students are to be commended for staying behind and caring for them while their peers were home with their families.

The baby goat happily followed the herd as it meanders around the school grounds, before going to their enclosure and hut for the night.
The school is very grateful to all their donors.  The needs are many and varied: from Braille supplies to beds, but for the foreseeable future - we rest assured the children will be fed.

"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them."
                                                              John Fitzgerald Kennedy

August 2014

Faithful friends

Not long ago, I said to a friend, "It's impossible not to help the school once you've been there.  They have so little, but there is such a powerful sense of optimism...of the desire to become self sufficient...and  the commitment to ensure these children not only get an education - but to prepare them for life once they leave the school."

Over the summer while most of the children were home with their families, faithful friends of the school continued to donate goods and funds.  It is important to note that two of the older boys volunteered to stay behind to care for the livestock, as the chickens, pigs and now goats are key to the school's sustainability efforts.  Reports from the headmaster, Mr. Chisala indicate the goats are thriving in their new home, and Operation Baaaa has been deemed successful!

Harry Curtis, a renowned South African musician visited the school in May and donated some musical instruments to the school's choir.  As he left, he also promised to do his best to help out.  He is a man of his word, and did just that with a recent donation of K2,060 (approximately $350 U.S.)  He also made a promise to return to the school and sing some of the choir's songs with them.  The children know he will, and they will be ready to greet him when he does.

Mrs. Armengol, whose company Bicolandia Ltd. in nearby Kitwe, is also a faithful supporter.  She has once again donated much needed products to ensure the students' hygiene is addressed, and generously gave 10 cases of Sunlight Laundry Soap and 5 cases of sanitary supplies for the girls. 

The school and its supporters are grateful for each new friend that comes to know them, and those who continue to remember and reach out to help.  If you would like to make a difference, knowing that 100% of your donation reaches the school, then please contact us at nlsfvi@gmail.com to see how you too, can become a faithful friend.

 "Friendship is not about who has been in your life the longest.  It's about who walked into your life and said, "I'm here for you", and proved it."

June 2014

Bells...bedding...blessings and benefactors

The school is blessed with people and organizations that help in many ways. 

Recently, First Quantum Minerals kindly donated bedding, assorted linens and towels from their guest houses to the school.  What a treat for the students to be given these gently used items!
Isabel Munsaka from FQM and staff from the school
Another wonderful donation this month was given by Jenny Gilbert from Kitwe, Zambia.  When she heard about Project Baaaa and the school's five new four legged residents, she purchased bells to hang around the goats' necks so the children and visually impaired staff would be able to find the animals.
"William" modeling his new bell
Every donation to the school makes the lives of the students better. As one of our donors said, "I love knowing that every dollar I donate goes to the school, because when I give a donation, I don't want it to go towards administration fees.  I also like seeing the updates on how my donation has been used."

We are very grateful to new supporters and those who have been benefactors for many years. Your help shines a light on the school.

"Feeling gratitude without expressing it, is like wrapping a present and not giving it."
                                                                                                     William Arthur Ward

Project Baaaaaa

One of the school's goals is to become more self sufficient, so Project Baaaaa  was created and is a huge step towards reaching this goal.

The decision to choose goats was driven by several factors:  goats are plentiful in Africa...are hardy creatures....easy to feed...affordable ($120 US) and a good size for being around visually impaired children.  Friends of the school stepped up to sponsor goats, a shelter was built, and signs were made to commemorate the names of those who were honored!
Dubbed the "Hillcrest Hilton" the school built the goat shed in preparation for the goats' arrival

Goats checking out their new home!
The children holding up signs with the goat's names
Tim and Yvonne Currin bought one to honour their two granddaughters and made a combo name -- Annigail. 

The Spirit of Christmas (an anonymous donor) purchased one for Cooper Kinley

James Kasongo funded one in honour of his late father, William.  James said he lived near the school when he was growing up and saw first hand the challenges the school faced so was moved to help the children with this project.

Heather and Roger Kinley purchased two goats to honour their new grandson, Magnus, and one for Roger's parents.

The children will not only benefit from raising the goats for food, they will learn how to care for livestock which will enable them to help their families when they return to their villages. 

We are grateful to everyone who helped with this project, and hope the goats thrive under the student's care. If all goes well, we will expand the herd. Stay tuned for updates!

"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world."
Anne Frank

May 2014

Songs of Joy

The school had the pleasure of welcoming Harry Curtis, a musician from South Africa on a sunny day in May.  Harry was in Ndola to perform at a fundraising dinner for the SPCA, but took time out to visit the school to share a morning of music with the children.

Harry has ties to the Ndola Lions School for the Visually Impaired as he spent his early childhood in Ndola where he attended primary school, and his mother was a secretary at the school when it first opened.

The event was coordinated and hosted by the school's music teacher, Mary Malamba.  The school's choir sang songs from their CD, called Empowerment, and Harry sang some of his favourites.

Jumbe Zulu (a student whose story is under Profiles) thanked Mr. Curtis for coming to the school.  Proud music teacher, Mary Malamba is on his right.

After Jumbe's heartfelt speech, Harry responded by thanking them all for the opportunity to spend time with them and for the most enjoyable time he could imagine having and that they had inspired him greatly. He promised to learn some words of the songs on their CD and return one day to sing those songs with them. He made a point of having a chat with the 2 boys on the keyboard, complimenting them on their talent.

Harry presented the school with 2 recorders which were a gift from his wife who is a music teacher, and 2 of his own CDs. He was happy to receive one of the choir’s CDs as well as a DVD.   You can listen to the choir sing one of their songs on YouTube.

A visit like this one will last a lifetime in the students' memories.  Sharing the gift of music is truly a donation made straight from the heart.

We are always happy to provide updates to our donors and to show where their funds have gone.  The seeds that were donated at Christmas time, and planted after the rains have started to grow, helping to ensure the students have a supply of vegetables. 
Learning how to tend crops also helps the students who may not continue on to post secondary education, but with the skills to provide help to their families and villages.
"Music is a wonderful, universal language that can unite all people and be understood by everyone. We should use music and song to uplift other people."
Jumbe Zulu, Student at Ndola Lions School for the Visually Impaired

April 2014

Heather Kinley, one of the school's supporters, was invited to do a presentation at the Lion's Club 19E District Spring Conference in Worley, Idaho on April 26th.  During the one hour seminar, she shared information and photos about the challenges and successes the school faces.

Heather described how the children said they felt they were "flying" when going on the new swing set for the first time.
Heather's session was well received, with some attendees purchasing the school's choir CD and others interested in sharing the information with their local chapters.  In addition Steve Nobel, District Governor gave a generous donation to go towards the food fund.

Headmaster, Mr. Chisala, is grateful to Priest River Lions Zone Chairman, Leonard Parenteau for inviting Heather to the conference, and to Larry Lawrence for his ongoing efforts in highlighting the needs of the school to various Lion's Club members.

Service groups or organizations who would like to receive a customized PowerPoint presentation can request one by emailing Heather at nlsfvi@gmail.com.

March 2014

Christmas continued recently with the arrival of gifts purchased by an anonymous donor who learned about this special school.  In lieu of gifts he would have normally given to family and friends, he gave them a letter describing what the donation would mean to visually impaired children in Zambia. 

This year, Christmas gifts took the form of audible soccer and dodge balls, magnifying loupes, vegetable seeds, and yes...even goats.  We dubbed the donor, "Christmas Spirit", for it truly described his generosity.

We talked to The Braille Superstore in Canada who insured we got the best value for the donation.   Free shipping worked well and although delivery took several weeks, it meant that every dollar donated went directly to the children. 

Long time supporter, Yvonne Currin, brought the gifts and shared their joy as each donation was given. 

The wonderful gifts on Mr. Chisala's desk donated by the "Christmas Spirit".  All that was missing was a Christmas tree!

The girls had fun being able to play with a ball they could hear, and caught on quickly

The boys had a great time playing soccer with the audi-balls.

Before receiving these special soccer balls, the boys would put pebbles into a plastic bottle so they could hear where it was kicked.

Six magnifying loupes were also given, and these had a dramatic impact on the students. 

Here a student uses the loupe to read the Bible

Yvonne said it was wonderful to hear the students were reading out loud while using the loupe

A brighter world made possible by a $7 item.

The tactile balls appealed to students of all ages

Another faithful supporter is Mrs. Armengol whose company, Bicolandia Ltd. in Kitwe, Zambia has often donated much needed practical supplies to the school.  She enjoyed her visit to the school where she donated a large supply of sanitary products for the girls.  What many first world women take for granted, is a huge gift to those who must otherwise improvise.

Mr. Chisala and Mrs. Armengol with the donations
Mrs. Glenys Shone, a generous and faithful donor, gave K1000 ($200 US) for mealie meal, and it too, was delivered by Yvonne on the big day.  Having enough food is always a stress and challenge for the school's headmaster, Mr. Chisala, and he was grateful for Mrs. Shone's donation. 

The Christmas Spirit is not finished, and two more projects are ready to start.  The anonymous donor had a special grandmother who had a bountiful garden each year.  As part of his donation, vegetable seeds will be purchased then planted and tended to by the students.  It is the donor's hope the children will have nutritious vegetables and experience the joy of growing and eating their own food.

Once the rains stop in Zambia, the memorial garden will be planted
Last but not least, Project Baaaaa is close to starting a new chapter for the school's goal of becoming more self sufficient. 

In November, school supporters, Heather and Roger Kinley heard of Heifer International, a non-profit organization who assist communities in learning how to care for livestock.  The Zambian representative was keen to help, but advised there weren't any animals available for donation. Undeterred,  Heather and Roger donated funds for goats in lieu of Christmas gifts, as did Yvonne and Tim Currin, the Christmas Spirit, and James Kasongo.  James works for Heifer International but wanted to personally donate a goat because as he said, "I have a great attachment to the Ndola Lions School for the Blind. I stayed with my elder brother in Hillcrest, just a stone's throw from the school and I saw how they suffered."

The goat enclosure has been built, and once the fencing is completed, the goats will be purchased and brought to their new "home".

Heifer International will train the students on how to care for the goats.  Goats are noted for being good milk producers, so they will hopefully provide the students with a constant supply.  The blog will be updated as soon as the school's new residents are welcomed.

A huge step forward for the school this year was the addition of a Grade 10 class.  There are 14 students that have been able to continue their education at the Ndola Lions School for the Visually Impaired.

And while the challenges are immense for the school, the school is grateful to those who continue to help in countless ways.

Knowing they are not forgotten... that they are worthy... brightens and enriches the lives of the children that call the school "home".  

"You are the piece of the puzzle of someone else's life.  You may never know where you fit, but others will fill the holes in with pieces of you."   
                                                  Bonnie Arbon

October 2013

Thanks to ongoing support from groups such as the Ndola Christian Fellowship, the Itawa Round Table Chapter 16, and the Siksha Foundation, USA the children have not only their bodies, but their souls nourished.

Generosity Soars

When a longed for playground was built in June 2013, the sounds of laughter could be heard throughout the school grounds.  "I can fly", said an 8 year old blind boy as he felt the air swoosh by him when he sat on a swing for the first time.  

It soon became clear that the older students were missing out on an activity that most of us, and our children have taken for granted.  The Ndola Christian Fellowship (NCF) heard and answered the call by donating funds to have a large swing built.   

Now all students have the opportunity to feel the freedom...to feel the exhilaration...and most importantly, to feel like a child.

The older students can now feel like they too, can fly

This young boy found a quiet place in the playground and happily played his homemade drums

The Itawa Round Table Chapter 16 and Siksha Foundation U.S.A. have once again generously reached out to support the school.  

Over the last couple of months, a dilapidated water tank, and dwindling food supplies were replaced and replenished.  

Member of the Itawa Round Table speaking to the school
Students gather in the dining hall for food presentation

Dilapidated water tank

Construction going well

Installed water tank!

At times it must seem to the faculty and students that they have been forgotten.  It is only by the generosity of supporters and ongoing sales of the choir's CD and DVD that has kept the doors open and the children fed.

Everyone at the school is grateful to those who continue to remember them. To those who continue to care. And to those who continue to reach out and make a difference.

In turn, the students will be able to continue their education and create a future that is not only brighter --- but with the comfort of knowing they were not forgotten.

"Too often we underestimate the power of a touch...a smile....a kind word...a listening ear....an honest compliment...or the smallest act of caring....all of which have the ability to turn a life around."       Leo Buscalia

September 2013

Generosity is the Best Present

A valued supporter of the school, Mrs. Glenys Shone, hosted a garden party at her home on 31st August 2013 on the occasion of her mother's 80th birthday.

Guests were asked to give donations for the Lions School for the Visually Impaired, in lieu of gifts and through their generosity, K3,330.00 (approximately $620 U.S.) was raised.  This donation will help to alleviate the on-going food shortage that the school experiences.
After singing Happy Birthday, Abigail, aged 6, presented Mrs. Barrow with a copy of the choir's DVD "Empowerment" on the occasion of her 80th birthday.  Here, Abigail receives a cuddle from Mrs. Barrow.

A member of the school's choir read a birthday message to Mrs. Barrow before entertaining the guests with a number of songs.
Our sincere thanks to Mrs. Shone and the ladies who attended the party.

Other recent donations include:

Thanks also to Mrs. Lara Maistrellis and family for a donation of clothing and to Ms. Colleen Jolly, also for a donation of clothing that was donated at the party.

Thanks again to ongoing supporter, Mrs. Armengol of Bicolandia for her donation of quantities of washing powder and cooking oil.

A welcome donation of approximately $60 U.S. from Mr. and Mrs. Anthony Olsen of Jersey Channel Islands for the purchase of food.  The Olsens have been long-time supporters of the school and have funded such initiatives as Project Chook I and II, and providing bunk beds ensuring all children have proper beds.

The school is grateful for everyone who keeps the students' needs in mind, and for their ongoing generosity.

"No one has ever become poor by giving."
                                  Anne Frank

June 2013

The choir members and their teacher, Miss Mary Mwamba Malama were invited by the Lions Club of Ndola to sing at a fundraising golf day held at the Ndola Golf Club on Sunday, June 9th, 2013.

They sang several songs from their CD Empowerment and judging by the applause at the end of each song, were very well received.

28 CDs were sold on the day, bringing in the amount of Kr 1,400 all of which will be used to buy food supplies for the students at the school.

The students had a wonderful day.  Not only did they get to delight people with their singing which they so enjoy, they were treated as VIPs by the Lions Club, enjoying a wonderful lunch, cake and cold drinks.

Thanks to the outgoing President Mrs. Smita Patel and the other Lions Club members for a memorable day.

If you are interested in supporting the school by purchasing a CD, or where the choir can put on a concert to sell their CDs, please contact nlsfvi@gmail.com. 

June 5th
Donations make the difference between the students just getting by to having a higher quality of life.  It could be anything from the donation of fresh fruit and vegetables to Braille supplies to help the students learn how to live in a world without sight.

This month, the school received both.  Mrs. Glenys Shone donated funds that are earmarked for food with part of her donation enabling 30 CDs to be produced.   All profits from CD sales goes towards the food fund, in yet another sustainable school project.

Sightsavers International donated 10 Perkins Braillers which have long been on the wish list.  To date, students have only been able to use hand frames and styluses for written communication, so the introduction of these vital Braille supplies will make a huge impact to the school.  
Headmaster, Mr. G. Chisala using one of the new Perkins Braillers
Mr. Chisala, the headmaster, has one of the new Braillers and a classroom has been set up to teach the students on their use.  In an ideal world, each child would have one, but this is a fabulous start.

Each donation makes a positive impact on the school, and lets the students and faculty know there are people that care about them.  And that is a huge gift in itself.

May 2013

Plato once said, "Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything."  

The Ndola Lions School for the Visually Impaired has a school choir that is directed by Ms. Mary Mwamba Malama (who is also visually impaired).  In October 2012, the choir produced a CD that enabled them to raise funds for the purchase of vegetables that augment their limited diets.

Recently, the Geldenhuys Family of Ndola donated a Casio keyboard.  Without any instruction, choir members began learning how to use it and within days had mastered it.  Another example of natural talent and determination!  

If you would like to order a CD, or help support the school, please email nlsfvi@gmail.com.  

Sincere thanks to the Geldenhuys Family for their donation!
The boys learning how to use the keyboard
Every child should have the right to be a child.  But too often, children with disabilities living in third world countries do not have the luxury of experiencing a carefree childhood.  

For years, the focus of fundraising at the school was to ensure there was enough food to keep the students nourished, but in the back of our minds, was the desire to give the kids a playground that would not only benefit them physically, but mentally and emotionally as well.

With the success of the school choir's CD, Empowerment, that is helping to stabilize the food issues, our focus turned to the playground.  Over the last few months, many people donated their money, time and energy to enable the dream to come true today.

Safety orientation began with very excited children anxious to experience all the various components
The boys were quick to walk with confidence on the bridge, and to go down the slide.  Can you imagine what that would have been like if you had no sight?


Pure joy!  The boy on the left had never been on a swing before but his face shows how much he  loved it.

Together...we can make it!
Our sincere thanks go to:

  • NCF Church, Ndola for a significant donation of more than half the cost of the building materials and for sending us Fred and the welding equipment to repair the old slide

Members of Pete's Soap Box who helped rehabilitate used playground equipment 
  • Pete's Soap box - Africa Quest - to Jim, Jan, Jo, Tim and Natalie for scraping down and painting the swing and rusty old slide and digging in the tyres and being so cheerful in the blazing sun and the rain!  You are an inspiration!
  • Mr. John Lanning of High Places, Chingola, for his generous donation and for supplying the children with biscuits on orientation day as well as supplies for a hearty chicken dinner.
  • Mrs. Roslyn de Louche for starting the Playground fund and her unfailing encouragement and ideas
  • Mrs. Heather Kinley for not only contributing personally, but for encouraging family, friends, and businesses around the world to support the project, which they did so generously. Our heartfelt thanks go to all of you.
  • Mr. and Mrs. Maistrellis and their children for donating their double swing set
  • Mr. and Mrs. Vic Shone for donating the plastic slide and transported it from Lusaka to Ndola
  • Mr. Simon Phiri and his assistants for so ably designing the playground and for the excellent construction work.
Last, but certainly not least, the school thanks Mrs. Yvonne Currin for her tireless efforts in coordinating Project Playground.  It was Yvonne's dream and enthusiasm that got the ball rolling and she spent many hours purchasing materials, and arranging volunteers and workmen to see the project through to completion.

As a certified mobility instructor, Yvonne spent the day with many of the children to ensure they completed a safety orientation, and then watched them do what they should be able to do -- experience what it is like to be a child.  

Yvonne said, "It was a labour of love and the children's delighted smiles and laughter says it all!"

"Today was good.  Today was fun.  

Tomorrow is another one."

Dr. Seuss

April 2013

Once again our sincere thanks go to Mr. and Mrs. Anthony Olsen of Jersey, Channel Islands, for their sponsorship of the second phase of Project Chook.

50 new layers were delivered to the school on April 16th and were quickly settled with the help of the resident students.
Students helping to bring the chooks to their new home
We have every expectation that these chickens will produce as exceptionally well as the last batch did.  Students gathered up to 48 eggs a day for many months, and each of the 120 children was able to enjoy an egg at least twice a week.  Once the chooks stopped producing eggs, they were sold with funds used for additional food supplies.

Everyone pitched in to help
Chooks settling in
This project is invaluable as it provides the children with much needed nutrition to supplement their staple diet of maize meal porridge and dried beans.  

Our thanks also goes to Olympic Milling for continuing to donate layers' mash each month to feed the chickens.  

We are grateful to the Olsens and Olympic Milling for their ongoing generous support of Project Chook, and we look forward to another 18 months of having a plentiful supply of eggs for the students.

Check back soon for an update on a very special project that will benefit the students in many ways!

March 2013

Generosity spanned two continents when a much needed donation of food and a freezer from Ndola based Itawa Round Table No. 16 with funding through the U.S. Siksha Foundation was presented to the school on March 8, 2013.

Francis Lombe Itawa RoundTable No. 16 - Outgoing
Chairman speaks to the school

Left to right:  Simushi Simushi RoundTable Zambia - Association Vice President, Ferdinand Menzu Round Table Zambia - Area One Chairman

Nicholas Sithole, Projects and Fundraising Convenor for Itawa Round Table No. 16, and several members from the local chapter visited the school and saw firsthand the joy their donation brought to the children.  
Nicholas Sithole Itawa RoundTable No. 16  -
Projects and Fundraising Convenor 
Substantial quantities of meat, chicken, maize and cooking oil plus the freezer for storage will help ensure the students are well nourished.

The new freezer donated by Round Table No. 16 with funding from Siksha Foundation

Just a few months ago, there wasn't enough food to keep the children at the school and they had to be sent home.
This donation not only provided much needed food to the students, but it also tangibly showed them and the school’s faculty that there are people near and far that support them.  And that gift is priceless.
The students, faculty and members of the Itawa Round Table No. 16 celebrate new friendships made through the generous donation.
February 2013

One of our donors, the Siksha Foundation sent a donation so the students could have a nice Christmas dinner.  Unfortunately, most students were sent home early for the Christmas break because the school did not have enough food to feed them, so a much scaled down dinner was provided to the remaining children with the plan to host another dinner in the new year.

With school back in full force, a belated but nonetheless joyful dinner was put on for the students on February 22, 2013.

$110 purchased enough chickens, vegetables, maize meal, drinks and sweets for more than 100 people.
When walking into the Dining Hall, we were amazed at how disciplined the children were.  Once again, we saw students with some sight help those who are blind, and older kids helping the little ones.  

When Mr. Chisala spoke in his customary soft voice, they welcomed him in unison, then you could hear a pin drop as he thanked the school's donors and volunteers and asked the children to remember them all in their prayers.

The meal not only provided the students with delicious food they don't often get, but it reminded them and those who are entrusted with their safekeeping that people from far away care for them as well.  

On behalf of the Ndola Lions School for the Visually Impaired, we thank the Siksha Foundation for their donation.

Check out the Profiles page to learn more about two students who despite their disabilities have their sights set on a bright future!

January 2013

The year is starting off on a very positive note!

  • Students returned after the extended Christmas break to the final installation of 28 new bunk beds and mattresses provided by the generous donation of Mr. and Mrs. Anthony Olsen.
Boys enjoying their new bunk beds and mattresses

  • Sales of the CD, Empowerment, have surpassed 200 copies and are being played in countries around the world!  All profits from the CDs go directly to providing food for the students.
What's up next?
  • With the food situation stabilized due to funds raised through CD sales, and an influx of young children to the school in January, a decision was made to proceed building a playground.
  • As funds are raised, it will be built in stages with components that will enable the children to gain confidence in navigating various obstacles independently, improve spatial awareness and orientation, get much needed exercise, and provide what every child should have the opportunity to do – to have some fun. 
  • Estimated cost is $1,200 U.S., and donations have already begun!  An Ndola family has pledged to provide two carpenters to do the labour, and funds from businesses and donors in Canada and Zambia is making this long time dream closer to reality!
  • If you would like to donate, please check out the How you can help page
This is a prototype of the type of playground we would like to build at the school.  

  • "Project Chook" is going into Phase II because the egg production from the initial layers has dwindled and they have been sold to local restaurants.  Proceeds from the sales will go towards a new batch of point of lay chicks that will eventually provide the students with approximately 2 eggs per week.

November 2012

The school's choral group sang songs from their CD, Empowerment, at Jacaranda Mall in Ndola on November 23rd.  

October 2012

Sadly, 80 students had to be sent home a month early for their Christmas break because the school did not have enough food to feed all 130 students.  The 50 that were allowed to stay were chosen because they were writing National exams this month.

With the help of donors supporting the self sustaining initiatives launched by the school, we hope this will never happen again.