You know people say that education is the key and reading educates. Well…it is true. So one of our main objectives at PAF is to educate our villagers, both kids and adults. Building a library was one of our top priorities. By now it is open everyday and as you can imagine people come and read all the time.
our book shelve
I guess we need more novels 😉
Even adults sit down to read and learn new things 🙂
fixing some educational posters in the kids reading corner
new chairs for the adults 🙂
As by today we have 260 books in stock, most for kids and teenagers but also some for adults. Topics range from science to novels and kids stories. We are trying to offer books in English and Chitonga.
Most are educational books with topics on agriculture, geography, science, literature, religion and health. But of course fictional books are not missing in our library. People can read novels like Harry Potter or Robert Ludrum in English. But also Tonga books like Tuli Bayuni (We are Birds).
The library is open to everyone in Chinkonono and the surrounding villages. People can come and read books inside or sit outside and enjoy the sun while diving into another world. Insides we have 2 kids reading tables along with 8 kids chairs and also 1 adult reading table with 2 adult chairs. I know…it sounds very small. And you are right, it is. But for now that is the best we can do. And lets be honest…the books is what matters most. And also people can of course borrow books for 2 days and read them at home.
But what am I telling you here? Let Lloyd take you on a little tour through our small library:
And yes…just like in any proper library, we do have a new librarian. Obert Milandu is taking care of the library and is giving out books and making sure they are all being returned.
Hey, if you want to come by and read a book…our opening ours are:
Week Days: 14:00hrs to 17:30hrs
Weekends: 08:00hrs to 17:30hrs
Thanks to all those kind donations, especially from Australia, our kids and adults are now in tune with the rest of the world. And I mean…who of us can say he never got lost in the magical world of Harry, Hermionie and Ron? We are so glad that Chinkonono people now can too. This library is making such a big difference and impact on people’s lives.
Since lots of adults in the villages don’t know how to read and speak English we are working hard to get Chitonga books. But we also still plan to set up English courses for adults.
I know…good read so far and you are waiting for the catch. And I don’t want to disappoint you here 😉 As you can imagine, books are not easy to come by in the Zambian bush. So we kindly ask for your help. If you have any spare books and want to send them to us to stock up our library, please feel free to do so. Since we plan to expand the library there is still space in the shelves to fill. Asking for money is always something that feels bad, but of course you can also donate and we will buy books for PAF library.
Planting A Future
P.O. Box 620288
Let’s work hand in hand to help our Chinkonono people to get access to literature and books. Thank you guys so much for taking the time to read this and maybe considering a book donation 🙂
Lloyd just sent an update on that young man. Not only his he growing bigger and stronger. He is doing very good. He has broken off from being a streetkid and attends school regularly now, thanks to the donations of Stan. Obdu now can fluently read.
No wonder his smile is so smug nowadays 😉
If you feel you want to support a kid’s education as well and help a family pay school fees, please contact us about our sponsorship programme!
Education is a universal human right and books play an important part in attaining it. Books are scarse in Zambian schools. Usually the “pupil to book ratio” is 1 to 4, so one book for 4 kids…This is worse in homes as village homes never stock books.
To provide books for kids PAF has come up with a plan for a village library. Our library room will be ready very soon as furniture is being made. Thanks to good-hearted people out there we sometimes recieve books for our kids.
This time our friends from Australia have donated books to stock up the library. Thanks to Guama School, Liane Hornig and all who have donated books. Twalumba! 🙂 You brought a lot of smiles to the village and our kids!
The books cover all aspects of life relevant to kids all over the world. We received books for entertainment and education. All aspects of learning have been catered for, such as subjects like History, Geography, Science and Crafts…but also a lot of story books.
So when you visit PAF library be assured that you will find adventures of Alice in Wonderland and books on how to grow potatoes or how to sew a shirt.
Apart from kids books our library has novels ranging from wild west adventures to The Book Thief.
A lot of books are still needed and our humble appeal from our well wishers is to continue helping us. Thank you so much!
Finally! Julie made it back to Zambia after 2 years. And guess where she went: Chinkonono Village of course!
Check our awesome new Slideshow to see what happened in the village and what progress we made while Julie was there:
Julie had a big To-Do-List to check 😉 As you know we have been announcing a market place and kitchen for ages. So we planned to get both structures roofed within that week. We managed for the kitchen. So that is good. The market we only could do half because we lacked grass to that the roof the traditional Tonga way. But we are confident that it will be done very soon.
Also our building that houses the library and sewing room for now was supposed to be painted nicely. Unfortunately there was a lot of plastering to do to fix dents and window sills. But Jason and Albert worked hard. So with a slight delay the ladies, Julie, Wesley and many other hands could start painting.
For the rooms we chose water-based white paint and for the lower part white oil paint so we can wash of prints of dirty kids’ hands 😉 Door and window frames are painted in a dark green. For the front wall and pillars outside we chose white oil paint to be able to wash them too. Also Wesley and Julie practiced their sign writer skills and wrote Planting A Future onto the top part of the front wall.
What can I say? It looks beautiful and bright and people can see it from afar. Our members are so proud, especially the women. They say that nobody has a nicely painted wall our house at home. And to quote Media: “Not all men’s work has to be done by men only. We can do that too!”…she refers to the whole painting job, which was very interesting and exciting for our ladies.
But now lean back and take 12 minutes to watch the Slideshow! Please share if you like it! 🙂
Für die Deutsche Version bitte nach unten scrollen!
Everybody loves sweets and candy, right? So do the people in Chinkonono. So we invited Kennedy to visit us in the village. Kennedy knows how to make candy. He sells them in villages and in town.
It seemed like a great idea to try and produce sweets to sell at our market soon.
Making sweets is as simple as they are good. All you need is sugar, a few lemons, some food colour (or in our case orange and strawberry flavored powder for water), some cooking oil and a bit of water. Obviously a pot, pan and fire 😉
First of all you put a pot on the fire and heat the sugar and some oil. After a few minutes you add water and the lemon juice and stir a bit. When it is boiling you will see some bubbles and foam.
Kennedy showed us how he knows that the mass is ready to be processed further. He took bits of the foam and put it in the water to check the consistency. I would just burn my hands 😉
While you watch that mass cook you can take some of the flavored powder and mix it with a bit of oil and also heat it till it is a liquid mass.
When the sugar mass is ready you need a greased pan to pour it onto. And then use a spoon to move the mass to not have it stick to the pan.
Once the mass cooled down a bit it takes 2 people to kneed and fold it over and over again. It is beautiful to watch how the colour of the sugar mass changes. It looks like gold in the sunshine.
The next step is to make a big ball of the mass and make small balls of the colored powder. Those you press into the mass and along the ball on 3 sides.
Then it is easy…you just form long threads of the mass, put them on the pan and cut them. Let them cool and tadaaahhh: candy!
Check the video to see the most important steps. It is fascinating to watch.
All our PAF members watched and learned. Even our PAF Warriors showed up to have a look (and taste a candy) before their practice.
We are now thinking of producing sweets like that which contain moringa powder instead of the flavored powder. But for that we will have to wait till we can harvest again. Right now all our Moringa trees are desperately waiting for rainy season 😉
We even sat down to count all the candy we made to figure out how much we could sell them for and how much benefit that would be. And what can I say? It is worth it! 😉
If any of you guys is interested in trying PAF Moringa Sweets made in Chinkonono…let us know. We gladly take orders and produce as soon as we can.
Ob wir es nun zugeben oder nicht…insgeheim lieben wir doch alle Süßigkeiten. Da sind die Menschen in Chinkonono keine Ausnahme. Also haben wir kurzentschlossen Kennedy eingeladen, uns im Dorf zu besuchen und unseren Mitgliedern zu zeigen, wie man Süßigkeiten herstellt. Wäre doch eigentlich auch nicht schlecht, wenn man selbst hergestellte Süßigkeiten auf unserem bald fertig gebauten Markt verkaufen könnte…
Süßigkeiten herzustellen ist wirklich kinderleicht und schmecken tun sie auch. Alles was man braucht sind folgende Zutaten: Zucker, ein paar Zitronen, Lebensmittelfarbe (oder in unserem Fall farbiges Pulver zum Einrühren in Wasser für fruchtigen Geschmack), ein bisschen Öl und Wasser….und natürlich Topf, Blech und Feuer 😉
Als erstes muss das Feuer geschürt werden. Dann werden Zucker und ein bisschen Öl auf dem Feuer erhitzt bis es blubbert und sich eine Art Schaum auf der Oberfläche bildet. Dann gibt man den Saft der Zitronen und ein bisschen Wasser dazu und lässt es weiter köcheln. Zwischendurch hat Kennedy immer mal wieder ein wenig vom Schaum oben abgenommen und im kalten Wasser betrachtet, um die Konsistenz der Masse zu prüfen. Würde ich ja nicht probieren…meine Hände sind nicht feuerfest 😉
Während die Masse so vor sich hinköchelt kann man schon das farbige Pulver mit etwas Öl mischen und dann auf dem Feuer erhitzen bis es eine zähe Masse wird.
Sobald die Zuckermasse die richtige Konsistenz hat wird sie auf ein gut gefettetes Blech gekippt und dann mit einem Löffel bewegt, damit sie nicht festklebt. Sobald die Masse etwas abgekühlt ist, wird sie zu einem großen Ball geformt und dann von 2 Leuten geknetet und gefaltet. Immer und immer wieder. Es ist faszinierend und wunderschön, zu beobachten wie sich die Farbe der Masse ständig verändert und golden im Sonnenschein glänzt.
Die farbige Masse kann nun zu kleinen Bällen geformt und dann längs der Zuckermasse in 3 schmalen Streifen angedrückt werden. Nun muss man eigentlich nur noch die Masse in schlauchförmige Stangen formen und auf dem Blech schneiden. Tadaaahhh: fertige Bonbons!
Schaut euch am besten mal das Video an. Dort sind die wichtigsten Schritte noch einmal zu sehen. Es ist faszinierend, die Herstellung zu beobachten. Kein Wunder, dass so viele unserer PAF Mitglieder zugeschaut haben. Auch die Jungs unserer PAF Warriors haben es sich nicht nehmen lassen, einen Blick (und ein paar Bonbons) vor ihrem abendlichen Training zu erhaschen.
Natürlich haben wir gleich mal alle Bonbons gezählt und durchgerechnet, wieviel Gewinn man theoretisch beim Verkauf erwirtschaften könnte. Es lohnt sich 😉 Momentan denken wir darüber nach, anstatt des farbigen Pulvers auch Moringapulver zu verwenden, um gesündere Süßigkeiten herzustellen. Allerdings müssen wir nun erstmal auf die Ernte warten, denn zur Zeit sehnen sich unsere Moringabäumchen noch nach der Regenzeit 😉
Falls ihr also Interesse an hausgemachten PAF Moringa Sweets habt, lasst es uns wissen. Wir nehmen Bestellungen entgegen und werden dann nächstes Jahr schnellstmöglich produzieren.
Ever been attending a book club? Reading a book and talking about it, analyzing it and interpreting it. Well…we do have a PAF reading circle in Chinkonono now. Well…it is probably not quite as professional and conversations might not be as deep. But our kids gather at our PAF Center regularly after school to read books and exchange stories they read.
Thanks to our friends and donors like Murray and Niki those kids finally have access to books and can practice reading, the english language and most importantly kick-start their creativity and imagination. It is amazing to see their sparkling eyes focus on the pages. You can really see them diving right into their stories 🙂
And who knows…maybe some day one of those kids will start writing their own story or book 😉
On a side note: We are still trying to solve the problem of lights inside the library. We hope to raise funds for solar panels so that we can install solar powered lights inside the building and thus enable them to also read inside. We are working on it 🙂
It all began with a picture on Intsagram. It is incredible what can happen, using social networks…you meet the most amazing people. So it happened for PAF 🙂
Lloyd sent me this picture of our Planting A Future football team, the PAF Warriors…a team of Chinkonono boys.
I uploaded it on Instagram and the way it works is that you use hashtags so other people can find your pics related to certain topics. One of my hashtags must have worked out because the picture got some likes and comments. One of them was from Andrew from Melbourne in Australia.
We started talking about the conditions of our team and about how hard it is to equip the village kids with sporting uniforms and balls. Andrew said he would love to help us. And so he did…only a few days after the Instagram post I received an email from Andrew. He said he was working his way through the warehouse and found some jerseys he would love to send over to Zambia.
I was so happy when I heard that. To be honest I expected maybe around 15 jerseys, which would have been great already. But the next email Andrew sent me made me feel a bit dizzy…in total he found 60 sets of sporting uniforms (jerseys, shorts, socks) in different colours and sizes. Surreal 😉
He also talked about PAF to his mom Niki, who is a primary school teacher. She talked to people in her school and managed to get some school books and educational posters of numbers, alphabet, colours etc. for our village school.
All those things were gathered and packed (in 3 big boxes) within only a few days and then shipped through DHL…express shipping! That was new. Usually when we send stuff it takes ages to get there. So everyone was very excited. I remember Andrew texting me he wished he could pack himself into one of the boxes to be there when they will be opened 😉
And the best thing about it was that Lloyd and the villagers didn’t know anything. We planned it as a huge surprise. I only told Lloyd that 3 boxes will be in Kalomo soon 😉
After a little struggle with Zambian customs at Lusaka airport (it would have been too good to be true if all worked out like planned), which Andrew could solve, Lloyd could finally pick up the boxes on Monday and take them to the village.
I guess pictures and videos say more than a thousand words. So just check them and see for yourself!
This is what Lloyd said when he got back to Chinkonono and opened the boxes with the kids around:
“Imagine playing football in one pair of jerseys for the whole year and sometimes playing in birthday suits when some players opt to wear the jersey to church or wedding ceremony? This was the scenario at PAF Warriors until one of our supporters gave us a surprise. It was such a surprise as the whole thing from planning to shipment was done in such mystery that I kept guessing what was in store for us. Julie and Andrew did it in such a way that they deserve an Oscar for the “Mystery of the Year Awards”. 😉
This beautiful mystery kept the village on the edge…personally I thought it was books for the library. One woman thought it was a bale of chitenge materials while headman Chinkonono thought it was a batch of breadfruit trees. The mystery didn’t end there as kids competed with each other guessing on what the parcels contained. Most of the kids thought it was kids clothes and toys and the big boys thought it was a pair of jerseys. While Julie kept on keeping me on the edge of the seat by refusing to reveal the contents. This made me so anxious to get the parcels and take them to the village so that I could see what was inside.
The day we were to open the boxes was dramatic as kids came to my house at 06am just not to miss the excitement. 😉 We couldn’t do it at home due to the number of people anticipating to see the contents hence we took the boxes to PAF center which has a lot of space. We did a quiz before opening by asking kids what was in the boxes. As you may guess the general response was sweets, clothes and toys. There was a mixture of joy and horror when the boxes were opened. Some of the real young kids sighed with dismay while girls and boys, men and women cheered loudly. It was obvious they had the last laugh.
And what was in the boxes? While while…sixty pairs of brand new jerseys, shorts and socks. The village had never seen such a thing before. It was such a joy to touch what they only saw on TV.
And now their own village team was to have a full soccer kit like premier league soccer teams clubs and two brand new balls plus a soccer ball pump. But also our ladies were happy as they were given the white jerseys for the new-formed netball team, the PAF Eaglets. It was such a beautiful day indeed.
Gratitude to Andrew and Niki Skoullos for donating the kits and school materials. This will motivate the boys who bring so much happiness in Chinkonono. Gestures of love like this make it a beautiful world to live in. Indeed its love without boarders from Australia.
Thanks Andy and Niki. Thanks for being part of the light PAF is bringing to Chinkonono village.”
Andrew…you guys really brought so much joy into our hearts! We have no words to express how grateful we are! Those kids, boys and girls, love sports. It is their way of releasing stress and getting their minds off things. And now they do have proper uniforms to play football or netball and can even compete with other teams!
Also the school materials will make our village school so much nicer and more colourful. Our kids will love it and that way be even more motivated to learn and study 🙂 Thank you so much, Niki!
Andrew sent me a little text as well. Check what he says:
“Even in rainy, cold Melbourne, Australia – our hearts are warmed by the work Planting A Future does. Through the power of the internet I was lucky enough to come in contact with Julie and she helped us share what we can with the people in Chinkonono! My mum Niki, being a primary school teacher was able to collect story books, educational posters and stationary which I hope Lloyd and the teachers will put to good use! The sporting uniforms I was able to get a hold through work and I thought it would be special to be able to provide uniforms and equipment for those who love sport just like me! I would love to wish Planting a Future the best of luck with their campaign, I’ll be supporting you guys all the way! To Julie, Lloyd and all the people in Kalomo and Chinokono village – we’re sending you our love! ”
Twalumba kapati! Zikomo! Thank you! Danke! We are sending back all our love to you, Niki and Andrew!
You guys are world changers and it lifts our spirits as well that there is generous people like you out there in this world who just jump in and help us without thinking twice! We are humbled indeed! That is Love Without Boarders!