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Service Programs

Scholarships for Children of Zambia

USA-2008-11-01-Scholarships for Children of  Zambia

Education gives children in developing countries the opportunity to break the devastating cycle of poverty that traps so many families. But many hard-working, high-achieving students in countries such as Zambia drop out after primary school because of the cost of tuition, uniform, and books.

The International Relief Friendship Foundation (IRFF) has a unique opportunity to raise money for its Supporting Success scholarship project in Zambia through Global Giving. An online marketplace, Global Giving introduces donors to a variety of projects and invites them to select ones they care about; they can then track the effect of their contributions. if IRFF can raise over $3,000 from at least 75 different donors by November 21, it will earn a permanent spot on Global Giving’s website and a connection to thousands of potential funders and partners, not only for this scholarship fund but for many other valuable projects across the globe. Even a $10 donation will be an enormous help towards this goal.

IRFF sponsors a free primary school in the Mackenzie Community, a small, isolated, and impoverished village on the outskirts of Ndola, Zambia's second largest city. IRFF chose to build a school there because there was no school for the children of Mackenzie when we started working there in the mid 90s. Students study through the 4th grade at this school.

If this school did not exist, the vast majority of these students would not be able to attend school at all, due to the financial burden it would put on their families, as education in Zambia is not free or guaranteed. For grades 5 to 9, however, students need to go to a government school, which charges tuition and fees. Most families cannot afford the cost, and their children's education ends.

Each year since 2006, the Supporting Success Scholarship fund selects ten students to receive a one-year scholarship that covers all of their expenses for one year of education in a public school. This scholarship is renewed every year through their graduation upon completing the 12th grade, assuming the student is in good academic standing. Graduating from 12th grade puts young men and women at an enormous advantage as they pursue a career, since the average student in Zambia completes only seven years of schooling.

The recipients of scholarships from Supporting Success are selected by their teachers based on their academic ability, their strong desire to continue their education, and the inability of their family to cover the expenses of their education. Many of these students live with relatives rather than their own parents. Many are orphans whose parents died of AIDS or other diseases. Some parents are sick and unable to work, while others have moved to the city to find work but could not take their children with them.

The program is overseen by the director of IRFF-Zambia, Mr. Nicholas Chisha, who lives near the Mackenzie Community and has been working with the people of the village for many years.

A donation to Supporting Success goes a long way:

  • $30 provides a school uniform and shoes for one student.
  • $75 provides tuition for one year for one student.
  • $150 provides all expenses for one year of schooling for one student; this include tuition, tutoring, a uniform, shoes, books, and supplies.

This is a concrete way to profoundly change the direction of a child’s life. A donation of any amount by November 21 will help access Global Giving's larger networks of donors.

To see photos of the students in Zambia and learn how to donate, see IRFF's Supporting Success Global Giving webpage.

For more information about IRFF and its Supporting Success project, visit or contact Paul Byrne, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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