About Ishe Anesu
I Was Blind--Now I Can See
Dear Friends and Supporters of ISHE ANESU PROJECT
Hope this finds you in good health. Maria and I are here to attend our daughter's graduation from Bethany University in California. The graduation went well and all her brothers were present. So, it was a double event--graduation and family reunion.
We have been invited to attend the annual confference of the Holston Conference at Lake Junaluska on June 12 and 13. On June 9 and 10 we are going to take part in packing the containers with food buckets, clothing and backpacks and other school supplies to be shipped to Zimbabwe for Ishe Anesu. We find this a great opportunity as we will personally express our gratitude to the many people at annual conference, representing many districts and churches in the holston Conference. From there, we will be speaking at a church in the Holston area.
The students of Ishe Anesu are doing well in general. Now it's quite appropriate to call them students, rather than children. Nine years since the foundation of Ishe Anesu has made a substantial difference to them.They have grown up not only physically, but also mentally. They now see the world around them differently. Some of their perceptions may be wrongly interpreted, but if one takes a close look and analyses their situation, the development described below shows a positive change.
Three of the students have decided to leave Ishe Anesu and look elsewhere for their education. This was not a financial problem, but a social one. I am referring to high school students living in boarding schools. The three students, Trish Takawarasha, Ngonidzashe Ngonyama and Adelaide Chivunze are from the group that completed Form IV at Marange High School, but their grades were not high enough to be accepted in Forms V and VI. They had to repeat the year to improve their passing grades. Ishe Anesu's policy is committed to educating students up to Form IV only. At this point,they can now qualify for job opportunities. In addition, they are now young adults--18 and over. However, the policy allows exceptions for very bright students to move on to Forms V and VI. So far, one student, Leon Chinguruwe, has qualified to move on and is now in his final year of Form VI. We pray that Leon will pass and move on to college next year.
The general concern among our high school students, especially those in boarding schools is that they are now being negatively identified by their peers as "those poor students; those underprivileged children, etc.". This is the same identity they knew when they came to the Project and they proud of it. . Now their feeling is that "I was blind--Now I can see." On the other hand, it seems foolish to quit school on those grounds without an alternative.
Ishe Anesu looked at the situation of about 10 studets who passed Form IV with low grades. Because they were not bright enough to do Forms V and VI, the Project registered them at Magamba Training Center for vocational skills. Trish and Adelaide were doing Sewing, Cutting and Design and Ngoni was doing Motor Mechanics. These were professions that would make them easily employable or even start their own business as self-employed. Unfortunately, they decided to quit. At the moment they are not in any school. They are, however, welcome to come to Ishe Anesu for meals and recreation, but they are too ashamed to come.
Bottom line is, yes, these students may have been"blind" at the beginning, but their vision now is still blurry. Regrettably, we cannot force them back to the vocational training center. We would rather replace them with those who are still crying for education but have no one to support them. We contiue to counsel the remaining 7 students at the training center and encourage them to complete their training. They have one more semesterof course work and one semester of internship for their practical work. You will be interested to know that the school administration at Magamba Training Center helps their graduates with job placement.
Back to Leon Chinguruwe, the only student who is expected to complete high school and move on to college, we are asking for a scholarship for him to attend Africa University beginning next year 2006-2007 academic year. So far we have a donor who has sent fnds for partial scholarship enough for the first half of the first semester.. Tuition fees plus accommodation at Africa University is $5,000.00 plus additional funds for books and personal hygiene needs. Even if Leon may be the only student from Ishe Anesu to go to college, we feel that this would make a big story in the history of Ishe Anesu.The vision here is that of a newspaper article with the title, "From Street Kid to College Graduate!!!" Please help to make this dream become a reality. Remember, even if your name does not appear in the article, you will be proud to know you are part of the history.
Maria & Bill Humbane Ishe Anesu Project
Adelaide, Trish, (Kudzai--not in the story) and Ngonidzashe