Not only does FCTrelief take care of our 85 school pupils and all their needs, it also supports some of our successful school leavers with their further education in various ways and places.
As well as two student doctors and two more to start next year, our two student pharmacists, our business studies student and those who have completed their year’s vocational training courses, we now have more in the pipeline after doing so well in their final school year.
Our clever Misheck, who was offered a place at David Kaunda boarding college in Lusaka after his excellent Grade 9 results, has now passed his Grade 12 with exceptional results. Thanks to a generous sponsor, he was able to study and live at the college for the past 3 years where he was in a very different environment to living in the compound. Studying among clever and ambitious young students opened his eyes to the many options available for further studies after school and a better future.
A university in Punjab convinces
After doing so well at college he started looking for a bursary, ideally to study abroad as the courses he wanted to do are limited or not possible in Zambia. After checking out lots of universities abroad in various countries, he found a course at a University in the Punjab in northern India, that offers an 80 % bursary (including board and meals) for the 4-year course of Bachelor of Engineering and Technology (Computer Science). Through a Zambian agency that assist such students, he is now excited to have his first passport and is waiting for his study visa and one-way air ticket to fly to India early in August together with some other Zambian students. The University has other foreign students from African and Asian countries and has a good rating and reputation as well as contacts for study exchanges with other countries such as Canada.
Together with Misheck and the agent, we had an interesting Zoom meeting with the lady who is responsible for the foreign students at the Uni who made a very good and professional impression. Checking out the website showed good facilities and we were able to ask her some important questions about living conditions, meals and health issues, which she answered competently and we were convinced this was an excellent chance for Misheck, with good options to continue his studies after these 4 years or find a good job.
A little nervous
His present sponsor has kindly agreed to continue supporting him with the remaining 20% of the study costs and a small monthly amount for any added living expenses for which we and Misheck are very grateful. Misheck knows this is the chance of a lifetime and is very excited, while also being rather nervous, understandably, as he has never been far from Lusaka, let alone abroad or on an airplane! At least English is widely spoken in India and is the study language. He knows he cannot come back to Zambia for 4 years unless there is an emergency and has to be even more independent than he was at college, which was a great preparation for University life abroad! He is determined to do well and make a success of this opportunity.
FCTrelief assisted Misheck with a new laptop and all the other things he needs like a suitcase, clothes, bedding and toiletries, costs for his passport, vaccinations and the agent’s fees. All in all, quite an undertaking for him to be ready. His uncle helped buy him a new mobile phone, so we can stay in touch with him.
It was rather special that his new baby sister was born last week, so he could see her before he leaves – he was really happy about that! His family will miss him but wish him well for a great future, only made possible with the support of his sponsor and FCTrelief over the past 9 years. Misheck, who was 19 in May, is a credit to his family and FCT and we all wish him well, a safe journey, happy landing and good start to this exciting new chapter of his life!