My name is Fadzai Mavindidze. I started organisation after being moved by the story I learned, of a grandmother that had walked several miles around her village, in search of a pencil, asking around, so that her grandchild could attend school. without success. She eventually came to my now late grandfather's homestead, who eventually helped her with one. I started Pencils and Smiles to initiate change and to alleviate the effects of poverty, empower neglected communities, improve standards of living and to bridge the gap between education and poverty.
My mother taught us that charity begins at home and that you can always share the little you have. With that in mind and feeling for this elderly woman that had suffered so much for a pencil, my team and I started at home, my granfather's village. (Mazvihwa, Zvishavane,Zimbabwe) We started by distributing pencils to every child, at the school in that village, (Gwamadube Primary School), which would help to keep the children going to school and would enlighten the load off the parents. That was all we could afford then but it made such a huge difference. There is a lot that is needed in these communities but we figured we could start somewhere and we did. We are now looking into building libraries and building toilets for rural schools in Zimbabwe, and with your help, we know we can achieve and even go further.
School children lack the necessary school supplies and equipment needed in and out of the classroom, for them to benefit from education they lack motivation, it affects their self esteem and robs them of the opportunity to rise above the poverty they are born into. Some end up dropping out of school as it becomes unaffordable as they move up the grades. They are then left to fall back and fit into the stereotypical cultural roles and chores of either herding cattle for little boys or fetching water and firewood for little girls, or working in the fields, robbing them of opportunities that would otherwise help them to explore and realise their full potential.
The old and run down non-flash, fallen in pit latrines they use for bathrooms need to be rebuilt from scratch as they are currently posing a serious health hazard for the children. They do not have bathroom supplies at all... For more information please watch the video in the gallery section.
Your help and donations will help us to build libraries and bathrooms, which will definitely improve the health conditions and promote literacy, making learning a pleasant and enjoyable experience as it should be. Children will stay motivated, ready to learn, be eager to be in the classroom and will as a result tower above the poverty they are born into.
The anticipated long term impact
The potential long term benefits of this project includec a healthy school community, improved, effective and more successful classroom experiences for both teachers and children, no drop outs as all necessities will be provided to ensure children keep going to school. New toilets will eradicate the current health hazard, with the current Covid pandemic looming, this would be a major safeguard. Negative effects of poverty will be alleviated, the education system will improve which will give the locals hope for a better and an improved future for the generations to come.
We need you!
Help us to make a lasting change and change the future of generations going forth. Any amount will bring a significant and impactful solution, these children were born into this environment and we are counting on you to help them see there is more and better out of life, we believe your help in whatever amount you can is the missing link to make it happen....remember it all started with just 1 pencil...... join us and be a part of the solution, we can do it together. We are grateful for your support.