Tuesday, 21 February 2012

"At Shitima We Have Lions"

On wednesday the 15th I woke up in Zambia. Kabwe to be specific. In a priests residence to be very specific. The last 6 months have been a bit of a muddy supernova for me so it wasn't really suprising. I have been brought here by an organization called Zamcog. Zamcog runs Shitima school which houses students from grade 1 to 12. The students are either extremely underprivileged or ex street kids. Yesterday they annouced their very first student to graduate high school. I am very priviledged to have been contracted to make a promotional video for the school. Thanks to Cluny Mackenzie, the Director of Shitima who is an old comrad from Canada. We had a good chance to reminisce when we got the truck stuck in a muddy swamp with 3 glozillion mosquitos litterally from 11pm to sunrise. Much love to Mr. Zulu and other farmers who woke up to find us head to toe in mud trying get the truck out and gathered a small army to push us out. "The journey is the destination".

My interactions with the youth of Kabwe has been nothing but inspiring and hilarious. From applying lipstick with chalk to frontflips off a single brick I have never experienced such vibrant and eager to learn kids. Ex street kids who used to linger in the shadows of this remote town are now using every opportunity they have to use their education in hope of one day helping the same kids they once were. They are housed, fed, educated and most importantly, given a sense of purpose. I have been interviewing the students for the video and the answers I am getting are unbelievable. When I asked a bright young girl what she wanted to do later in life she told me "I want to be a doctor and a dancer. And if not that, then a Lawyer and a dancer."

Some are well on their way to becoming engineers or entrepreneurs. The majority I talk to just want to use their education to make the world a better place and help the less fortunate. When I see how serious they take their education I feel guilty. The time I was in school was spent drooling and doodeling (A.D.D diagnosed y'all). I have never seen such a successful and well run institution for the keen young people of Africa who are willing to do anything to get ahead but otherwise would be marinating in the global stew of unemployment.

Here is the Facebook link as well. Please press "like" if you aren't too busy.

Anyways here are some flicks I've snapped since I've been shooting. Hope to have the video up soon.

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