As school resumes, the Ambassadors are busy planning for the year. We participated in the ICC Club Fair this week and will interview candidates next week to fill our 5 open positions. To support our initiatives, we have already begun planning our 5th Annual Global Evening. This event will be held on November 24th at the Four Seasons Moscow. We have begun reaching out to sponsors for auction and raffle prizes. The students have been bringing in items from around the globe for our silent auction baskets and we have already secured a few exciting prizes for our live auction. We are especially grateful to the sponsors who have already pledged their support: The Four Seasons Moscow, Coca-Cola Hellenic, Heineken, The Intercontinental Moscow and the Wildtrack Safari’s Eco Lodge in Botswana.
On Ms. Francy’s trip to Africa this summer, she was honored to meet the President of Botswana, His Excellency Mokgweetsi Masisi. She shared with him some of the work Ambassadors have been doing in Botswana. He was very supportive and encouraged us not to give up on the preschool, saying its too important.
For Ms. Francy, the best part of going to Africa in the summer is seeing the growth and progress that continues after the Ambassadors leave. It is so inspiring to know that the good work we do continues. Here are some memories from her trip:
In Livingstone, Zambia, we provided funds to the Youth Community Training Center to purchase 85 layer chickens and chicken feed for 8 months. These chickens will each lay one egg per day, providing 85 eggs daily to support their culinary program. The AAS Staff previously raised money for new computers for their lab, so we took their old computers to the Ambassadors Learning Center in Kamatanda. The students were happy to receive these used computers, along with the food items we purchased to give them extra energy during exams. One of the adult learners joined the grade seven class in taking exams, a big milestone on her learning journey.
Teachers Oscar and Caroline are so proud of their new home sponsored by Moscow Starbucks. They continue to teach at the school and their daughter continues to grow and thrive in her new environment. Recently the family purchased chickens to raise and planted a large garden to grow their own vegetables which they share with their extended families and other villagers.
Teacher Mark, who runs our Adult Learning Center, had a baby boy this summer. Mark was scheduled to graduate but didn’t have the money for his cap and gown and graduation fees. The Ambassadors made an emergency vote for funding via our Facebook group, and covered these costs, along with his bus fare to Lusaka for the ceremony. He sent us a photo from the proud day.
The Book Bus came to Zambia and visited the library we built with Mikaela Hong’s service group in Minnesota. They were so inspired, they filled it with books – so many books that we didn’t have enough room on the shelves. They also provided cushions for the children to sit on when they read. People from all the surrounding villages come to see this building and read these books.
We presented backpacks to our Adult Learners filled with school supplies, as well as rice and beans for their families. The current roster of 16 learners range in age from 22-36. These inspiring individuals want to be able to read the books in the library and understand what their children are studying. Our goal is to build them a brick building this year, so they no longer have to repack their mud classroom after the rains.
For those who are just learning to read and write, we put in place some job training elements so they can support their families. For the men we bought a welding machine and supplies. The women were happily using the two sewing machines we provided last March so we hope to get additional machines for them this year. The women were thankful for the colorful fabric we brought them on this journey, as you can see in the short video clip posted at the end of this update.
To support the Ambassadors efforts, you can donate items for our auction, attend our Global Evening Event (details coming soon!) or make a tax deductible donation online at: