JUDE CHRISTIAN ORPHANAGE.
A warm welcome to our new website!
There are lots of amazing and uplifting stories and photos to enjoy, but please remember, there are many children
living in unspeakable circumstances right now
and we are here to help them!
In 2011 Maria met Judy Malama.
Judy was a high school teacher who had taken in pupils in her her own home because they had literally nowhere to go. Her dream was to build an orphanage and provide a home for many more vulnerable children.
...is to support our friends in Zambia.
To help with the building of a school and dormitories.
To give these children
All our efforts are directed towards raising as much money as possible.
Quiz nights, race nights, sponsored events.
We are groups of friends who have fun while helping others!
This has been the major work that has taken place this year. With the laying of a good quality, hard wearing floor, the building is a step closer to completion.
Sincere thanks to a large anonymous donation which enabled the roof to be completed earlier in the Summer
A further donation allowed window and door frames to be installed and that is happening this Autumn.
WATCH THIS SPACE TO SEE HOW MUCH WE NEED TO COMPLETE THIS STAGE OF THE PROJECT
Thanks to our very generous supporters, work on the roof began in May and we are a big step nearer to providing a safe home for the most vulnerable children in Kitwe.
Every penny of your money goes straight out to Zambia (it takes only 24 hours to send funds!).
Now life is becoming a bit easier, we have resumed sending books out for the children. We have parcelled up 5 boxes and one is already on its way.
This takes the total to over 20 x 20kg boxes sent since 2019. It costs around £150 to send each box. If you'd like to help with shipping costs, a donation would be most welcome.
The events of the current global pandemic have taken their toll on the lives of our friends in Kitwe, Zambia. The school closed back in March and only re-opened in July for the eldest pupils to take their leaving exams. The repercussions of a closed school are far reaching. It means that there is no income from the fee-paying students and as a result, the teachers cannot be paid. No education, no income, no salaries! And of course the ‘Judes’, the orphaned pupils, are stuck in their impoverished living conditions with no education and no regular meals; the school provides breakfast and lunch for them.
At the time of writing this (late July) the pandemic has reached Zambia but, thank God, not taken hold. Several thousand cases and several hundred deaths, mainly in the capital, Lusaka. We hope and pray that the situation doesn’t get any worse.
January 11th was the first anniversary of Judy Malama’s death. The orphanage was her dream and passion and she lived only long enough to see the first pupils trying on their new uniforms. Her anniversary was a significant day this year. In the morning, following local custom, her gravestone was officially blessed. Then in the afternoon, the Jude school was officially opened by the Mayor of Kitwe, in the presence of Judy’s mother, her family and hundreds of guests. Her plan was that the profits from the school would fund the orphanage, providing a home for up to 200 needy children.
FR LEONARD CHITI SJ
I met Fr Leonard when he visited St Wilfrid’s last year. I was able to tell him the story of the project and he gave very valuable advice. It such a small world; Fr Leonard has family who live in Kitwe near the school and he hoped to visit and see things for himself. He did so in May and we had a lovely conversation via messenger while he was looking around. He thought the school was ‘a gem’ and said that Stephen (Judy’s husband) had done a ‘splendid job.’ High praise indeed from the Jesuit provincial for Zambia and Malawi!
Fr Leonard was able to see the latest, and most important phase of the project, the first of two dormitories. Last year we were given a very generous donation from supporters here in Preston. It should have been sufficient to complete the first building, but due to a drop in the value of the Zambian Kwatcha, building came to a halt at roof level. We are indebted to those who made this possible and are determined to raise funds to complete as quickly as possible. Finally, the most vulnerable of small children will have a roof over their heads, their own bed, and most importantly, feel safe for the first time in their lives!
Last Autumn, the parishioners of St Wilfrid’s showed amazing generosity in their response to the appeal we made. £2000 was needed to complete the toilet and ablutions block. I never dreamed that we would reach the target. In fact, the total collected was £2400! Sincere and heartfelt thanks to everyone who supported us!
An on-going project is the sending of books to the school. While the school building looks great and all the pupils have smart uniforms, the classrooms are bare! Each room had a selection of posters on the wall, and there were limited numbers of exercise books, but there were no reading books at all. Neither did the teachers have any resource books to help with their lessons. We came back to the UK with a long list of things we knew needed to be shipped out because they weren’t easily available in Kitwe. Up to now, 17 boxes of books have been shipped out: teacher resources, reading books, textbooks, fact and fiction books, also stationery supplies. The equates to about 900 books! All the books have been donated but we have to pay shipping costs which are about £150 per box. Fundraising events and generous donations have made this possible.
There is uncertainty for all of us at the moment. While things are bad for us, for those living the most deprived lives, there is true desperation. And so, the need and the drive to help the orphans of Kitwe is even stronger! After several months break, we are sending books out again but need the funds to pay for shipping. Only 10 days before lockdown, we were meeting to plan a Grand Summer Ball at Blackburn Rovers. Little did we know! Hopefully those plans can be rekindled soon.