Livingstone: Be Here, Be Inspired. A taste of Social Commitment
There is definitely something special about Livingstone. You don't know yet when you get there. It's not promoted anywhere. It's not written in your guide-book. People don't talk about it or very discretely. Livingstone is the Zambian Capital of Tourism, everybody knows. But not only. Livingstone is also a center of social initiatives and corporate & non-profit collaborations. Many NGO's, many volunteers, many tourism businesses are working here all together for sustainable development of Livingstone's surroundings and its community. This is pure acts of Altruism and Commitment!
Sanctuary Sussi and Chuma's Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives began in July 2010. It was about building a strong and lasting relationship between Sanctuary Sussi & Chuma, involving staff and visitors, and the Nakatindi Community in order to ensure the ongoing development of the School and community.
What were the basic needs of the community at that time?
- easier access to a water supply,
- sustainable food sources,
- further education,
- and improved health care.
- About the water supply:
Sanctuary Sussi and Chuma's SRP (sanctuary Retreats Philantropy) team raised the required funds to install a borehole and hand pump to provide water for the residents of the third section of the village (Village consisted in 3 zones). The funds, drilling and installation of the borehole was their responsibility and the day to day maintenance was at the community’s expense.
- About sustainable food sources:
The school there had already created a small but functioning vegetable garden. In order to make this a more successful, profitable business and food source for the community, they extended the garden initially by 6 raised netted beds. Sanctuary Sussi and Chuma frequently gives seeds for the garden that includes vegetables and herbs popular with residents of the village but also items that Sanctuary Sussi and Chuma will purchase at the lodge as well. This provides a constant consumer for the business as well as making sure the crop produced will sell within the community.
The aim of this garden is to eventually provide the children of the school with one meal a day. Was built also a hammer mill shelter to house the hammer mill donated to the village, so it could be created into a profitable business where people will purchase maize to be ground there for their staple diet of nshima.
This will encourage school attendance, be incredibly beneficial to the children’s health and relieve some of the pressure off the parents who are struggling to feed their families. Sanctuary Sussi and Chuma's SRP's team is still working with both projects and are hopeful to provide regular meals soon to the school children.
- About further education:
The last completed project within the community was the build of a 1x2 classroom block at the school. After receiving permission from the local authorities, the Sanctuary Sussi and Chuma's SRP team raised enough funds to make it real. This actually allowed a new grade 8 class to be taught at the school (previously the school only managed to teach up to grade 7). Due to the limited classes of grade 8 and upwards in our nearby town, Livingstone, many Nakatindi children would successful qualify to Grade 8 however were unable to find a grade 8 class that would take them.
The District Education Board Secretary has employed two Grade 8 teaches at the school since. There is now a grade 8 class with 50 pupils in attendance for the 2013 academic year, 40 of which are from Nakatindi and 10 from surrounding communities as well.
An amazing achievement ensuring the continued education for these children as well as those to follow in the years to come.
- About Improved health care:
The last on-going project is the build of a rural health clinic. With only a few home based carers serving the community and the nearest clinic being a few kilometers away with no transportation, emergency health care is a necessity to the village.
Have been raised a large majority of the funds through Sussi and Chuma's generous guests. The build then, will soon commence. The District of Health have committed to providing nursing staff and general medications to the clinic once built and will request no further maintenance from Sanctuary Sussi and Chuma.
This is how the private sector, NGO, village and local council are willing to work all together to provide a better future to the community.
The clinic will also include a health education room in order to provide various classes to the community about general hygiene and family healthcare, but most importantly it will be able to provide much needed HIV/AIDS education and awareness classes.
Over the past 3 years, have been developed excellent relations between Sanctuary Sussi and Chuma, the NGO's staff, guests and the community.
By Sanctuary Retreats Philantropy Coordinator.