My visit to the Connect Schools. Part 1.

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Stephen Luwishya Girls Secondary School, Kabwe, Central Province, Zambia.

Stephen Luwishya Girls Secondary School, Kabwe, Central Province, Zambia.

It was 5 am in the morning,this time I was heading 352 Kilometers north of Lusaka. Like always, I was very excited because I was going to meet 100 plus young people from 5 School in both Central and Copperbelt provinces of Zambia.
After covering a stretch of approximately 300 kilometers north of Lusaka I arrived at Chifubu Secondary School in the Copperbelt Province. Upon my arrival I headed to the headteachers office to pay courtesy and also hear his view on how the pupils are performing academically and in extra-curricular activities.
After meeting the headteacher it was now time for me to meet the ever enthusiastic pupils and conduct a training with them and this time we focused on how to avoid plagiarism, how to re-blogs, as well as active participation in the debate on the Voices of Youth online site. During the discussion of the thematic topics , the pupils identified drug abuse and vandalism as major challenges being experienced in their community.
As a way forward to curb the aforementioned vices,the pupils reached a general consensus of initiating a Anti-Drug Abuse Youth wing in their school to advocate for a vandalism and drug free Chifubu Secondary School.
After pupils managed to sign up on the Voices of Youth Online site, I was off to Luanshya Boys Secondary School in Luanshya district, this time am doing two things; handing an internet router and conducting a training.
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It's day 2 of my site visits and I was off to my home town, Kitwe, where I was expecting to meet some childhood friends and family member. But before that, I couldn't afford not doing what I love doing the most - conducting training with my fellow young people and finding lasting solutions to some cross-cutting problems in our communities.
I was off to Mitanto Secondary school where I found pupils anxiously waiting to see me and have a training on VOY Connect. I was thrilled to learn that besides blogging on the Voices of Youth online site the pupils had taken it upon themselves to establish an organic garden where they have grown bananas and some other fruit tree. And surrounding the garden are some beautiful and evergreen indigenous trees they lobbied for with the forestry department of their municipality.
After that, still smiling, I was off to Mukuba Boys Secondary to conduct my last training for the day. I arrived at the school and went to our usual meeting place-the computer laboratory. Before sneaking in I could hear the pupils in an heated debate discussing prime issues being experienced in their community and how they can be addressed by youth driven solutions. I decided not to disturb them but simply divided them in three groups and had them continue discussing the social topics. Later they typed-up the findings and resolutions from the individual groups and uploaded them on the Voices of Youth online site. The most cross cutting issues discussed was that of poor water and sanitation in their community. They resolved that there is an urgent need to advocate for clean water and good sanitation in their community football teams and homes.
After uploading the articles with the pupils it was now time for me to wrap up the training by reminding the pupils to actively participate in the online debate on Voices of Youth and also avoid re-blogs.
After meeting more than 80 pupils from 4 schools it was now time for me to spend a bit of some time with my family and friends before leaving back to Lusaka via Central Province for my last training. After spending a night in Kitwe I was off to to Lusaka via Kabwe where I conducted my last training for the month at Stephen Luwishya Secondary School. By and large, the training in the Connect schools in Central and Copperbelt provinces can be defined as overwhelmingly successful. My next training is planned for next month when the pupils open schools for the second term.

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