I can't believe I haven't written more about 'Arise' earlier! It's definitely one of the things that drew me to Kaniki and a real privilege to be part of, because you get to see the difference it makes in people's lives.
Kaniki Orphans Project (KOP), as it was originally known, was renamed last year to more accurately reflect its purpose. According to Google (the very reliable source that it is!), ‘Arise’ means ‘to get or stand up’. The purpose of the charity is to empower orphans, vulnerable children and their guardians to rise out of poverty. It works to try and break the dependency syndrome that is often rife in Africa.
|Some of the orphans with a guardian|
Support is mainly focused through providing education - covering the cost of school fees, books and uniform. The youngest children in Arise are sponsored to attend our school, Kapumpe Christian Primary School (as we only have Grades 1 and 2 at the moment) and older Arise children to attend community and government schools. Sponsors include individuals, mainly from the UK, and a fabulous charity called ThreeEighteen (www.facebook.com/ThreeEighteenUK).
|Alice, who is sponsored to attend Kapumpe Christian Primary School|
Each week the Arise Office opens on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday afternoons, where guardians are able to come and ask for help if they are struggling. This is run by two Zambian volunteers. Rosie and I run a homework club one afternoon a week each too, which is open to any children in the surrounding area.
A lot of time is spent trying to get to know guardians and children so we can build meaningful relationships and trust. We visit families in their homes on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons - some in surrounding villages and others in quite remote areas out in the bush. In addition, there is a children's gathering that takes place on Wednesday afternoons where the children have a meal, play games and hear Bible stories. Guardians are invited to gather on Thursday mornings to chat and pray so that they can be encouraged both emotionally and spiritually.
|Lunch at the Wednesday children's gathering which the children call 'Nshima Day'|
At the moment, whilst Tim & Gemma (who run Arise) are back in the UK for a month, I am overseeing Arise. It means I am learning more about what is involved every day! So far it has involved co-ordinating the payments of school fees, transport money and making decisions about help we can give…or consulting Gemma over email! There is lots more to share about Arise so future posts may well follow.