Zimbabwe Achievers Awards Foundation (ZAA Foundation) yesterday handed over food parcels donated by ZAA Alumni to Esteemed Children’s Trust (ECT) Caledonia branch in an effort to assist the charity’s work with underprivileged children in communities.
The groceries which included mealie meal, cooking oil, sugar, salt, tea and flour were donated by former ZAA winners Adiel Mambara, Samantha Ncube, Sinkiwe Moyo, Samantha Tapfumaneyi, Codilia Gapare, Patrick Ndlovu and ZAA Foundation Ambassador Farai Mudariki.
“ZAA Foundation is the goodwill arm of the ZimAchievers Awards and our desire is to see positive change within our communities. We are grateful for the work being done by our community champions in helping others during these difficult times and we remain committed to assist in various ways through the Foundation and our partners,” said Maimba Mapuranga, ZAA Foundation Ambassador, speaking on the side-lines at the handover ceremony.
ECT is a self-funded charity run by Madrine Chiku which helps and sponsors children in Epworth and Caledonia through feeding programs, medication and education sponsorship. Most of the children are from disadvantaged backgrounds and face challenges to get by on a day to day basis since most are orphaned and some have special medical needs such as antiretroviral treatment (ART).
“Most of our children here face unimaginable challenges that range from food scarcity, let alone nutritional balance. Some are constantly at risk of exploitation in society and as ECT we are currently seized with trying to acquire land so we may set up a proper shelter and resource centre to meet the needs of our beneficiaries. We are so grateful for the continued support from ZAA Foundation and we shall be rolling out the second phase of the donation at the Epworth centre on Friday,” said Madrine Chiku.
The ZAA Foundation was represented by Maimba Mapuranga who also gave a motivational talk to the children at ECT and reaffirmed the Foundation’s commitment to help out the charity beyond just the food challenges but also set up a more permanent relationship. The sentiments were also confirmed by ZAA founder Conrad Mwanza.
“The work of the ZAA is not only limited to celebrating high achievement but we also look to uplift our communities by working together and we applaud the kind gesture from our Alumni and the work done by ECT and many other people to make things better for those in need amongst us,’’ said Mwanza.
“We plan to work with the Trust and sponsor some children at ECT with the help of our partners through school fees, winter clothing and blankets especially given the season and also work with other charities around the country and the Zimbabwean communities in South Africa. In the long term we want to set up IT Labs where we can teach coding and IT courses to the children. I have been so encouraged by the togetherness shown by many people and businesses both back home and in the diaspora in aiding others and I urge everyone to keep on doing our bits of good, it goes a long way in shaping communites,” he added.
Each child received a food pack containing basic commodities and had an opportunity to share their dreams and life goals in a heartfelt session at the centre. Currently ECT Caledonia uses the home of volunteers Mr and Mrs Nyamudo as the centre for their exercises and appealed for wider assistance in securing land for the Trust as the needs and beneficiary list keeps expanding.
The ZAA Foundation was launched last year and works with the ZAA’s Alumni and partners in philanthropic work in communities. The Foundation has partnered with various causes and also made grocery and utensils donations at the ECT Epworth centre last year with Zimbabwe and Worcestor Warriors rugby star Farai Mudariki, who was named as the Foundation’s Ambassador.