We are in the middle of winter and in Bindura winter has not as yet been as severe as had earlier been predicted. This has been a great relief especially for children who have to prepare for school early in the morning.
Highlights in the village have been ‘O’ level results in February and the 100% pass rate in the practical subjects which became the basis of placement of youths into vocational school. This is against 12% in the academic subject where children still continue to struggle. 15 youths in March graduated to the Youth Home from the village. All in all 29 youths are in various stages of vocational training. 120 children managed to go out of the village for family attachments in April. The SOS Children’s Villages Band that has children from the village and the family strengthening program has continued to make progress in the competitions held so far to our delight. Our sport and cultural activities continue being vibrant with one of our children likely to go to Toyoma in Japan on a cultural exchange theatre program in August. Our soccer team produced 7 players who made it into the national under - 20 team
SOS Family Strengthening Programme Bindura
With its 6 program interventions namely education, psychosocial support, health, legal support livelihoods economic development and community capacity development, FSP Bindura continues to make an impact on the community. Participating children continue to attend school regularly due to direct fees payment while two youths are into class 4 driving training programme. To increase disposable income, four other schools are embarking in school based projects. The SOS Children’s Village Band has qualified for the Star-Brite final competition. Over 78 other children benefit from various forms of support and activities to boost their self –esteem and confidence. A memorandum of understanding between FSP and the Ministry of Health has facilitated access to medical treatment for over 58 children while 38 receive palliative care support. Paralegal committees have been effective in legal education assisting in acquisition of birth documents and identity documents. As a result children can participate in activities requiring identification. There has been a reduction in the number of reported child abuse cases. 150 families have gone through a food security program and engaged in income generating projects. Community Based Organizations remain as the key and roadmap for community self reliance and programme ownership with several trainings having been done for members.
The nursery has 75 children enrolled. Of these are 17 from the Family Strengthening Programme, 12 Family Based Care, 16 from the community and 30 are on community Sponsorships. This is the full capacity for the kindergarten and most children are within the target group. Fees are pegged at US$390 and US$290 per term for full day and half day respectively. The staff comprises 3 educators, principal and general hand who are permanent employees. The relief educator and cleaner are contract workers.The assistant educator attended 6 months ECD training in Bulawayo as part of ongoing staff development.
Children were treated to a special outing courtesy of Joina City adventure island in Harare at the end of term one. The PTA is in the process of acquiring two more computers for the children plus child friendly software. Unreliable and erratic water supply continues to be a major challenge at the nursery.
SOS Primary School Bindura
SOS Primary School was conferred with the Secretary’s Merit Award by the Ministry of Education. The award recognizes among other things, notable overall educational achievements. A date is yet to be announced for the occasion. While the school struggles to maintain standards, it continues to face challenges in fees collection. This makes it difficult for the procurement of essential instructional materials as well as the payment of bills and services on time. In the computer lab the ratio of child to computer is 6:1. This makes practical appreciation of computers difficult. There are several other developments pending like the resurfacing of the tennis and basketball courts as well as procurement of hockey and cricket equipment. The fee structure and the inability of parents to pay fees make these developments difficult to attain.
SOS Secondary School
SOS Secondary School has had busy start to the year. The first part of the year has been characterised by a lot of athletics as the main sport. In athletics the school managed to have four students going as far as national level while in the later part the girls’ soccer team managed the same feat. In debate the school managed to host a debating competition where the school debating acquitted itself very well coming second in two occasions. Being the month of June a number of students are sitting for their ‘O’ and ‘A’ Levels. The major construction project at the school obviously is the erection of the dura - wall on the western side of the school.
We are happy to share with you the developments at our projects in Bindura and their contributions to the development of the children who are our focus. We do hope that you are in good health and will continue to receive your very welcome support.
SOS Children's Village Bindura