Monday, August 11, 2008

Youth Day in Zambia

On March 12th Zambia celebrated its youth day, a day that reminded all Zambians that youths are important. The theme of the day was “Promoting partnerships between youths and stakeholders for national development.” The celebrations were held at the Chibolya center and graced with the presence of Mary Emmett, widow of the late David Emmett (in whose honor the center is named), and her sister Judy Durr. Our Communications Coordinator in Zambia, Clementina Chapusha explains the significance of Youth Day in Zambia:

The theme Partnership between the youth and other stakeholders for national development does not simply end at youths being incorporated into adult decision making processes but must be institutionalized in issues, settings and practices that are very much part of the young people’s lives.

The partnership is about doing things together and also listening to everyone’s voice, regardless of their status in society, and embracing divergent ideas. The principle was embraced because it makes adults accountable to young people for their decisions and actions, as accountability is an integral aspect.

The children performed various dances and presented poems. Most of the poems were about how much they are affected by poverty and how HIV/AIDS has left them orphaned and at the mercy of the extended family.

Mrs Emmett was so touched by what she saw and heard from the children that she could not help shedding tears. She said her husband, who made the centre possible, was a very wonderful person who had a heart for others.

Mrs. Mary Emmett took time to dance with the youths.

Agency Director John Mufumbi thanked Mrs Emmett for her visit to Zambia and for making Youth Day a memorable day for the sponsored children.

“The help that we receive goes a long way in making significant difference in the lives of our sponsored children. Most of these are disadvantaged as they lack the basic needs such as education, health care and opportunities for promoting self esteem. With the support of our wonderful contributors we are able to make life worth living for the children.”

Photo by Clementina Chapusha.

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