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The seeds of success begin with nourishing our future generation. Scimitar believes in providing a healthy environment for the residents of the farm and local community through nutritious food, empowerment, team work and education. The ‘Homework Project’ was an initiative launched to provide a venue for the farm children to receive conservation education, access to school supplies, a full meal once a day as well as a safe space for emotional support.

The homework project aims to provide a space of social certainty, self confidence, leadership and teamwork, instilling the importance of becoming self-sustaining, educated adults determined to seize opportunity. Dedicated ladies facilitate, encourage and inspire the children to take interest and pride in their learning, creating a fun and motivating space to share ideas and grow together. Through a Montessori based curriculum, the creche arms the children with the tools of community spirit, self-sustainability and a sense of responsibility and integrity towards education. The Montessori approach prepares an environment which will nurture concentration, exploration and independence, encouraging one to think about what they are learning.

While our farm tutor Miss Audrey, had been administering adult English classes for the farmworkers, she simultaneously set up a creche and the homework project for the farm children. This ensured education for children of schooling age, instead of having to babysit, they now had the opportunity to attend school. Returning from their studies, the homework club would welcome them with literacy and numeracy reinforcement lessons, based on the Cambridge Curriculum from the UK.

This curriculum compliments the Zambian curriculum, its success reflected in the children’s results at school. The early years children are able to read English before they start school in grade 1, and we now have students in grades 10, 11 and 12 all passing their end of year exams. 

The importance of art and drama is recognized at the creche, providing children with a platform to learn through creativity. There have been many successful nativity plays produced over the years, as well as skits which reflect relevant topics taught at the time. Art is included in the weekly programme with the vision to implement a long-term programme, making the subject a permanent feature.

The focus of 2021 is to update the curriculum as well as install a library with books donated by an education provider in the UK. In the ethos of development, our teachers are currently enhancing their skills by studying their BA in Primary Education – sponsored by Scimitar, maintaining the vision of ‘come and grow with us’.

To ensure holistic development for our children, we provide health checks from the local clinic. Sister Mudenda and her team attend the creche and homework club once a month. They carry out routine weight and measurement checks, monitoring the children’s growth and general health, as well as administer vaccines and deworming pills. The importance of nutrition as well as prevention of diseases is taught at the homework club, giving children understanding and responsibility of their own hygiene.