Latest Newsletter - July 2014

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From Jean Mugridge of Lights For Learning:

Sincere apologies for the delay in keeping in touch with all of you great people who continue relentlessly to support our work, we cannot express how appreciative we are for your help.

We have been working continually to try to progress the work of the charity and it seems that now we are starting to make a headway to the goal that we wanted to achieve, though obviously, we still have a long way to go.

We were unable to go abroad in 2012 due to health issues and family commitments, however in January Roger and I went to Zimbabwe and we spent an extremely productive three weeks with meetings with the Government as well as fitting lights into 2 schools and persuing the possibility of enabling computers to become workable in the educational establishments. We also travelled to twenty six schools and two hospitals to take measurements and assess the viability of fitting lights at a later date. It was an extremely informative trip and we were excited by the information that we were able to gleen during the it.

Designing and preparation were carried out throughout the rest of 2013 regarding the computer issues etc. We were also working on items needed to set up our first workshop in Zambia!

We eventually returned to Zimbabwe in March 2014, being a team of four. Though, for the first time ever,
we had an issue with getting the kit out of the airport, (change of Government and error on paperwork being the problem!) we were able to meet with several Government officials and because of the success of our previous trips our work has now been adopted by the Government who have insisted that they will now be responsible for our accommodation when we are visiting etc. They were also extremely upset that Zambia had given us a workshop and within a couple of days we were given a building to be used as a workshop in Harare once the necessary work has been carried out on it. This is such an exciting phase for the Charity.

Once we had got the equipment out of the airport we were able to fit lights into two schools and a hospital, so all in all the trip was not wasted.
We are so excited about the workshops. Our goal was to establish the production of the system in country and to train individuals to be able to go out and fit the lights themselves. We are working toward giving opportunity to those who have been unable to find employment for whatever reason, enabling them to become independent and empowering them to make something of their lives.

By achieving this we will be helping the students in rural areas where electricity is something that they will probably never have, giving them the opportunity to achieve higher results in their examinations - which has already been proven in the schools where the lights have been fitted. This is also giving the adults in these areas the opportunity to receive health education, living skills etc. in the evenings after their day’s work. Wherever possible we will also endeavour to fit lights into clinics in rural areas to assist the medical staff to fulfil their work.

Let’s hope that all of these dreams come true – we are well on the way to achieving this, but without your help we would not be able to do anything!

Once again, many thanks to you all, we will endeavour to keep you up to date more often, and I apologise for my tardiness!

Best wishes

Jean Mugridge, Lights For Learning