Linda Community School is the most dynamic and resourceful school that we have had the privilege to work with over the past year. Headmistress Cathy Chilambe is a constant inspiration and driving force behind our projects at Linda giving them insight and direction. We and our partners – African Impact – greatly appreciate Cathy’s commitment, cooperation and enthusiasm.
Cathy, born locally in Livingstone’s very own General Hospital on the 30th of December 1976, started Linda Community School in 1996; having completed both primary and High school within the Linda area. Cathy also studied at the University of Zambia and David Livingstone College. Her commitment to her own education led her to also place a considerable value on the education of others, thus influencing her decision to start her own school. By opening a ‘Community School’ Cathy has afforded countless children the opportunity to receive an education without having to pay high school fees. Having grown rapidly since its inception, Linda School now has seven teachers educating over 230 students.
With the help and support of Cathy, The Happy Africa Foundation is able to work alongside the school to assist her with afterschool club programs and the sponsorship of some of her learners through out Sponsor-A-Child Program. In the later part of 2013 we assisted the school by securing their water supply when we funded the erection of a borehole house around the school’s water pump.
Cathy’s open and collaborative nature makes for fantastic working relations and a bridging of the gaps between our individual, institutional and national cultures. Since 2000 Cathy has also fulfilled the role of Livingstone co-ordinator for an Australian publishing company Ducere, working on providing children the opportunity to publish their own short stories and read those written by others.
A personal highlight for Cathy this year was when a former street child (one of the first she was ever able to assist and educate) secured his first stable employment, in addition to becoming a father.
Her long-term goal in the community is to facilitate and foster gender equality. In Zambia there are many women who are still subjected to life as a second-class citizen and face everyday battles to combat old traditions and customs. Cathys aim to encourage women to show where they stand and get educated the same way that men do is one that we wholeheartedly support.
Thank you Cathy for your dedication and the big impact that you make in this community!