Secondary Scholar,

Grace lives in Mpika, Zambia, with her aunt, three siblings, and a cousin. When she was 14-years-old she was selected by members of her community to receive a bursary from CAMFED. This support allowed her to stay in school at a time when her aunt was struggling to pay her tuition.

Grace lost both of her parents when she was just five years old, so she doesn’t have many memories of them. She finds comfort and happiness in her studies and her friends. Her favorite subject is math, because “I’m good at it!”

In Mpika, girls face a predominantly masculine classroom environment, with a lack of qualified, female teachers. In its first year, CAMFED Zambia trained a female Teacher Mentor in each of its 17 partner schools.

CAMFED Zambia’s reach has substantially increased over the years. In 2002, 245 girls were awarded scholarships. By the end of  2018, 38,168 girls had been directly supported with secondary scholarships. 

This is a school report from one of the first Zambian girls that CAMFED supported. She could have been excluded from education, facing limited choices, scarce employment prospects, and pressure to marry early.

In Mpika and across Zambia, CAMFED has found allies in mothers, fathers, teachers, head teachers, government representatives, and students. It is these groups who have helped to build the CAMFED Zambia program. 

“Education helps you learn, and makes your future bright. Without CAMFED, I would not be in school.”

When Grace is not in class or studying at home, she plays soccer and netball, and she loves to sing in her church choir. On Saturdays, she helps her family by working all day with her aunt selling rice and vegetables at the local market. But school is her focus, having seen many other girls in her community drop out and get married at a young age. Many others are kept home by their families to work, care for younger siblings, and contribute to their family’s needs. 

But Grace's story doesn’t end there. Just as Grace completes her secondary education, she will join the CAMFED Association (CAMA) - the network of female leaders educated with CAMFED support - who will support Grace on her journey to independence.

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When you educate a girl in Africa, everything changes. She’ll be three times less likely to get HIV/AIDS,
earn 25% more income and have a smaller, healthier family.

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