Eugene Mtonthola is head teacher of the FCTrelief Zambia Foundation tutoring program. For him, happiness means making others happy.


Age: 35
Occupation: teacher
Function in FCTrelief: Head teacher of the tutoring program
Professional Experience: Primary School Teacher (2010-2015), Secondary School Teacher (2015-present)
Family status: married to Marian, a daughter Camilla
Greatest Success: The chance to work for FCTrelief and to provide knowledge to children


How did you hear about FCTrelief?

Eugene Mtonthola: I was invited to a friend's wedding in Switzerland and was there at a youth conference. So I came into contact with Christine and Heiner Merk and the aid organization FCTrelief. Soon they asked me if I could imagine working for FCTrelief as a teacher. I was working as a teacher at that time, but I was dissatisfied with the job situation. Now I have been working for FCTrelief Zambia Foundation since 2016.

What exactly is your job in FCTrelief?

Together with Tabea Kusongwa, I am responsible for the FCTrelief Zambia Foundation's tutoring program. As principal, I am mainly responsible for the organization of teaching and school operations. I am the teacher and am responsible for the care of the individual students. I am in regular contact with the schools and I also make home visits to inquire about the welfare of the children in the slums.

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What do you like about your work for FCTrelief?

Up till now it has been fantastic. On the one hand, I learned a lot and grew as a person. On the other hand, I love my profession as a teacher and role model for the children. FCTrelief offers me a platform to live out this passion.

What is the biggest challenge in your job as head teacher?

It is always difficult to exclude a child from the sponsorship, even if the child fails to attend the tuitions or does not take the tutoring seriously despite warnings.

What do you value most about your co-employees?

They are very supportive, reliable and trustworthy. We work very well together as a team and they all have a great dedication to their work.

What was your biggest concern last week?

I've been thinking a lot about how children can improve their understanding of English literature and how they get better grades in this part of the regular school.

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What do you like to do?

I like to improve all sorts of things through my commitment.

What do you not like to do?

I do not like to sit around and do not like the feeling that I have not done anything meaningful.

What are your biggest strengths?

I am a devoted, trustworthy and determined person.

What is your biggest weakness?

I am incredibly self-motivated. I find it difficult to give up responsibility if I feel I can solve the task myself. I am currently learning to delegate tasks in my function as head teacher.

What do you like to do in your free time?

I like being with my family, playing piano, visiting friends or listening to gospel music.

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Who is your favorite person? Why?

My late father. He had a great devotion for his family. He encouraged me to be a teacher and never gave up on me. He worked hard to make it happen.

What is happiness for you?

Happiness is to make someone smile, to help someone to realize their potential and to believe in themselves.

Which person would you like to swap with for a day? Why?

With Bill Gates. So I could help the needy people even better.

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Who is your biggest role model? Why?

The gospel musician and pastor Travis Greene. He is my role model because of his devotion to God.

Who would you like to meet? Why?

Former US President Barack Obama. He won the Nobel Peace Prize for his extraordinary commitment to strengthening international diplomacy and cooperation among peoples. That inspires me.

What would you like to do in your life under all circumstances?

On the one hand, I would like to record a musical album to bring hope to people. On the other hand, I would like to help as many disadvantaged people as possible to make their dreams come true through education.

What is the most memorable moment you have experienced with FCTrelief?

Memorable was the day I started working on the plot of FCTrelief Zambia Foundation. At the beginning the plot looked a bit rudimentary, like in the bush. In the meantime we have four new buildings.

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What do you want for FCTrelief?

I wish the capacity of our tutoring program was even greater, so that we could support even more disadvantaged children with education.

Why would someone come to visit Zambia?

It is a safe place for tourists, friendly people live here and nature has a lot to offer. Safaris are much less commercialized here than in other African countries. Therefore, the chance to see a lot of wildlife is greater.