Although education is free from Grade 1 to Grade 7, many of the families living in the rural
communities in and around Mfuwe cannot afford the basic additional requirements of uniform,
exercise books, and pencils. There is a very high percentage of orphans in the area who are
looked after by their extended family, who often struggle to feed the children, let alone pay
for their education. If a child is educated there is a much greater chance of them being
employed and being able to support their family in the future. The want for education is
overwhelming and everyday application letters for sponsorship are left for Charity begins a home. By
Grade 9 many girls have dropped out of school as they are required to help look after the
family, do chores in the house, and also they face the challenges of teenage pregnancy and
early marriage. If girls could continue their education to Grade 12 there is a much brighter
future for them and more of a chance for them to take ownership of their lives and in turn
set examples for the next female generation.We feel that education is the key to a successful
future, and so as well as supporting three schools in the vicinity of the Park, we also
provide sponsorship to pupils from the area. With help from our own 'Charity Begins at Home'
fund, The U Foundation, The Sausage Tree Charity, The Dreike Scholarship Fund, Dazzle Africa,
the 'Austria Kids' fund, as well as individual guest donations, the 'Charity begins a home
Pupil Sponsorship Scheme' is currently responsible for putting more than 350
pupils through 30 different primary and secondary schools in the Eastern Province. We also
sponsor a number of students in tertiary education - focusing on trades and skills that can
be used to benefit the community - for example teaching, nursing, plumbing, carpentry,
electrical, and mechanics. Pupils are monitored on a termly basis and must provide their
reports at the end of term.
Chiwawatala Primary School
Chiwawatala Primary School is situated on the main road that connects the National Park with
Mfuwe Airport, that cuts through Mfuwe village itself. The school takes around 900 pupils from
Grades 1 to 9, being taught by 18 teachers (a ratio of over 50 pupils to 1 teacher) - of these
children, more than 400 are orphans. Charity begins a home has supported the school since 1999;
initially assisting with the purchase of stationery supplies, but now, with our help, the school
offers probably the best facilities of any Basic School in Mfuwe. In 2009 we helped connect them
up to mains electricity and in 2011 boreholes were sunk, supplying clean running water to the
school. Currently, with the help of guests' generosity we sponsor about 50 children here through
school; paying for their uniforms and other school equipment. Our School Fund also pays ﬁve
teachers' salaries, to supplement the Government-funded teachers. Charity begins a home has also
helped with renovating the school: building teachers' houses and recently with the help of the
Chipembele Wildlife Education Trust and The U Foundation built the Carly Pinder Library, complete
with computer room. In 2011 we used some of the LCCF funds to renovate several of their classrooms
buildings. To encourage a conservation mindset within the children, the entire school is taken on
a game drive once a year. Our generous supporters have also helped provide the school with sports
equipment and to equip classrooms. And many guests, with a little space in their luggage, have
helped to supply us with small gifts that are used as motivational prizes at an end of term
prize-giving awards for hard working pupils.
At the start of 2013 we introduced and funded a chidren's "feeding programme" at Chiwawatala School.
This ensures that 900 children receive at least one nutritious meal ever day.
Mfuwe Day Secondary School
Mfuwe Day Secondary School is situated in the centre of Mfuwe village and is the only Secondary School
in the area. Over 1200 pupils attend school in Grades 8 to 12, with pupils coming from all the neighbouring
chiefdoms. Many children travel long distances, so approximately 350 pupils board at the school. Initially
the Secondary School had almost no classrooms of their own and had to come to an arrangement with the
neighbouring primary school to borrow a few of theirs. The school had two main challenges: a lack of building
infrastructure and lack of materials. Both of these factors made it a real struggle for teachers to teach
effectively, and the school desperately needed support in order to improve the quality of essential local
secondary education. A long-term plan for improving the School was necessary, with the emphasis focused on
providing the basic needs of classrooms and essential materials and equipment. From 2010 to date Charity
begins a home, with the kind support of our guests and dedicated supporters, has made huge improvements to
the School, including building an assembly hall, 6 classrooms, 4 dormitories, plus renovation of one
dormitory (housing 48 pupils per dormitory), washing facilities and a dining room. The improvements have
already instilled a greater sense of pride in teachers and pupils alike. In addition to this, we are providing
the day scholars with a nutritional meal a day which has significantly increased attendance and performance
in studies. We also currently sponsor over 100 pupils at the school, focusing in particular on supporting girl
pupils who can find completing school to be challenging absent additional support.
Jumbe Day Secondary School
Jumbe Day Secondary School is a rapidly growing school in Mambwe District. In order at accommodate increasing
pupil numbers new infrastructure was urgently needed. Our involvement with this school started in 2026 with the
construction of toilet facilities and sports viewing areas, but the need for extra classrooms soon became apparent.
In 2018, utilizing shipping containers, we funded the construction of a new, furnished, 6-classroom block. This
went into use in 209 and proved to be a very successful design. Another similar block is being built in 2020, with
another block planned for future construction.
Aunt Mary's Academy
Aunt Mary's Academy is small pre-school for very young children. This is quite e new educational venture for the
Mfuwe area and was established by one of our own ex-employees, Mary Phiri, who successfully trained and qualified
as a teacher.
We support the school by paying a teacher’s salary, including them in our "Meal a Day" programme, and donating books
and educational materials.
Staff Training & Enrichment
Our local staff are our most important asset, many of them have worked for Andy, our co-founder, for over 20
years. We train them to be the best that they can be and encourage them to progress and develop their skills
and responsibility. All of our staff and their families are entitled to assistance with school fees through
our "Charity Begins at Home" programme, which allows each of our contracted staff to nominate at least one
child to attend secondary school. the programme also offers funding to relatives of our employees, allowing
them to attend further education. In the future we hope that, by building capacity in our local staff, they
will play an increasingly valuable role in the company. Many of our managers and guides have 'risen through
the ranks' through the company, starting off as kitchen porters, waiters, store men and even pool attendants;
over the years, with help from their fellow employees and through study and hard work and the support of the
company they are now some of our most valuable members of staff!
Luangwa Safari Association Medical Fund
The Luangwa Safari Association Medical Fund (LSAMF) was set up to enable a doctor to care for staff and
guests in the Luangwa Valley and to spend most of his/her time caring for the rural community of Mfuwe at
the Kakumbi Rural Health Clinic. What became the LSAMF was started in 1997 as a response to the lack of
emergency medical care in the Valley. The service was originally envisioned to serve just the staff and
guests of the lodges on an emergency basis only, but the doctor’s position rapidly evolved to include an
active volunteer role at the Clinic in Mfuwe village.The LSAMF was set up under the umbrella of the Luangwa
Safari Association (LSA), and is run by a committee and funded by donations from the lodges in the valley
and from individual subscribers wishing to have the services of the doctor. Clients seeing the doctor are
charged a set fee plus any medications. In the rare circumstance of a critical situation, the doctor will
assess the need for a medical evacuation. Doctors come for what is usually a three-month stint in the Valley,
Charity begins a home contributes to the Medical Fund and provides accommodation for the doctor.
For more information please contact - firstname.lastname@example.org
HIV and AIDS Awareness
There is no escaping the fact that HIV and AIDS pose a massive threat to the people of Africa, with many
premature deaths from HIV and AIDS due to a simple lack of proper nutrition. As an organization Charity begins a home
is committed to helping its staff to learn more about this disease and the problems associated with it.
We help our staff by ensuring they receive the medical attention they require and provide them with food
supplements, we also try and educate them on risk factors, distribute condoms, and ensure that no stigma is
present in the work place. One of our senior staff has established the Kakumbi HIV & AIDS Nutritional Support
Project and also co-ordinates counselling sessions that teach our staff about the facts. We also help fund SEKA,
a local theatre group, that perform plays to the local community (and guests) about HIV and AIDS.
Supporting the Local Economy
As a proud member of the Mfuwe Community, and one of its biggest employers, we feel that we have a responsibility
to support local businesses. We support vegetable market-gardens in Mfuwe, buying vegetable and herbs for Charity
begins a home locally, as well as buying It's Wild!
Products, produced in Zambia by
(Community Markets for
Conservation); we currently buy It's Wild! honey, peanut butter, rice, mielie-meal and other products whenever
When undertaking new building projects we try and employ local workers, builders and thatchers and pay the local
community when using their natural-resources. We also support a local theatre group,
, that perform plays for
the local community about HIV and AIDS and about human-wildlife conflict. We also support local sports teams.