We are extremely passionate about seeing the children of Fimpulu reach their full, God-given potential.
From the beginning, education has been a focus of our work at Choshen Farm. We encourage and support schooling of Fimpulu's children, from preschool through high school, and on to the university years.
Fimpulu Christian Preschool
The vision of Fimpulu Christian Preschool (FCP) is to maximize the God-given potential of every child by providing excellent early childhood education, and to introduce children to their Creator at a young age. The school consists of three classrooms, two playgrounds, six teachers, and an average of 150 students.
- Baby Class: The local equivalent to an American nursery school, caters to 3 and 4 year olds
- Middle Class: The local equivalent to an American preschool, caters to 5 and 6 years olds
- Reception: The local equivalent of an American Kindergarten, caters to 6 and 7 year olds, who will enter the government system in 1st Grade
what does teaching look like?
Our school distinguishes itself particularly through early introduction of English (Zambia’s national language) and through its commitment to gospel communication during every school day. We focus on teaching academic basics, as well as the Bible, and plenty of songs and play. Graduates of FCP are consistently identified as top performers once they have merged with their peers in the government system.
How else does FCP engage the community?
The ministry of FCP extends to parents through an active PTA. Through an annual series of workshops, we teach parents about important issues such as childhood nutrition, brain development, nature based teaching tools and saving for a child’s education. Parents are encouraged and equipped to connect with and lead their children more effectively for years to come.
How can we support the preschool?
Families pay $2 per term ($6 per year) to send their children to Fimpulu Christian Preschool. This contribution is minimal compared to the actual costs of running the school. Through our generous donors, Choshen Farm supplements the school’s income in order to keep total cost to the families low, ensuring that every child has access to quality education.
Support FCP or a vulnerable student.
The Choshen Farm Sponsorship Program
The Choshen Farm Sponsorship Program provides crucial financial assistance to some of the most needy and vulnerable students in our area. This program is specifically geared towards students who are single or double orphans (missing one or both parents), or who are otherwise vulnerable due to home-life or extenuating circumstances.
We focus especially on helping students make the hard jump from grade 9 into secondary school (grades 10 through 12) – a leap that is cost prohibitive for most families. Choshen Farm is able to fill in this gap, providing the means and the encouragement necessary for students to finish school and seek a brighter future – even college or university!
How does it work?
Our Sponsorship Program combines a work-study philosophy with a strong relational-mentorship component. Each scholarship student works at the farm and receives intensive tutoring during school holidays (in April, August, and December). In turn, Choshen Farm agrees to pay up to 80% of the student's financial need according to orphan status and family situation.
Our hands-on involvement with these students has granted us a position of "pseudo parents" in many of their lives and we take that responsibility seriously.
Who are you reaching?
The majority of the students we end up sponsoring have three things in common:
- They have been a consistent part of our afternoon tutoring programs
- They have shown great potential for future success
- They have an obvious family need
Many of the students we sponsor are also single or double orphans, though several are simply from poor families. Some students enter our program in 8th grade, while others start with us in 10th grade.
how does the program work?
Our program is different from other school sponsorship programs in that we provide so much more than money for school. Our goal is to invest in these kids relationally, walking with them through their formative years in a way that doesn’t just challenge them academically, but spiritually as well.
The students attend school for three-month stretches, followed by a month-long holiday. During those holiday months, (April, August, and December) students return to Choshen Farm to attend daily tutoring sessions with tutors for each subject, who can help fill in any gaps from the past term. Spending so much time with native English speakers has proven to be an asset as well!
The purpose of their work-time on the farm is largely about growing work ethic and personal responsibility for one’s education. Students who have graduated from our program have commented that the work element did more for them than they ever could have imagined, and they see themselves as more resilient and determined because of it.
what makes your sponsorship program unique?
Our vision for these kids is so much more than just helping them get through school. We are concerned about the people that they are becoming, and the character they are developing day by day. We want our students to not only know grammar and algebra – we want them also to know Jesus Christ and what He wants to do in their lives. We are also unique in that, while many sponsorship programs stop in 12th grade, we have a goal of sending as many of our students as possible on to college.
What is the impact?
The impact of this program is best summed up with the words of one of our students, who is currently in his final year of college, where he is receiving his Bachelors of Science in mathematics.
“Coming from a poor family, I had no chance of attending school beyond 9th grade, but when I stop and see all that has happened in my life, I’m brought to tears. I never imagined I could ever be here! But it's not just the school, it's everything else that you have taught me – I’m a different person now.”
Sponsoring children to attend school makes a difference, not only in their lives but in the lives of everyone connected to them. Their increased earning potential ensures that their parents and siblings will be better off and also that their future children will be more likely to complete school as well. Educated adults also tend to live healthier lifestyles, and provide healthier lifestyles for their future children as well. In short, investing in education is an investment in the livelihood of the nation.
Invest in the future of a local student by supporting their education.
FAQ’S FOR CHILD SPONSORS
+ How much does it cost?
We ask that sponsors contribute $100 a month for each student in secondary school (grades 8-12).
+ What does that $100 cover?
Transportation to and from school
Room and board
Toiletries and incidentals
Tutoring materials and program costs
Meals at the farm for three months of the year
Related administrative costs (communications with the school, photo copies,
Fluctuations in exchange rate
+ Can I start sponsoring a student mid-year?
YES! Every year, we pray about how many students to accept into our program, even if we do not yet have an adequate number of sponsors. Joining up with us mid-year allows us to pair sponsors up with a student who has not yet been matched.
+ What happens to the student if I miss a payment?
We understand that sometimes things come up and a deposit is missed. We promise that we will always make sure that each one of our students attends school and participates fully in the holiday program, regardless of outside financial support.
+ What if $100 is a little steep for me?
There are a number of families for whom $100 is a bit much, but who would still like to support a student. In these situations, we encourage the family or individual to give as they are able, and we then combine several such donor groups to meet the need of a single student. Please do not let financial shortfalls stop you from doing what you can.
+ Can I write or send gifts to my student?
Please do! We facilitate the writing of letters from the students to the sponsors three times per year and try to include a photo with those letters at least once per year. Many sponsors take that opportunity to write a letter in return or to send a small package to their student, which is always a treat!
+ What is the school schedule, and when should I send money?
If you would like to send funds monthly, we’d encourage you to set up a recurring gift on PayPal or establish automatic bill pay with your bank to streamline that monthly action. If you would prefer to give funds less frequently, but still a few times a year, we’d encourage you to give during the holiday months of April, August and December, as those are the times when we make large school fee deposits for our students. Annual giving is fine as well, as we can make a note in our system and set those funds aside.
+ What about sponsoring a college student?
Having seen the dramatic increase in job opportunities and earning potential for college graduates, we promise the students in our high school sponsorship program that if they study hard and get accepted to college, we will find a way to send them. The cost of sending a student to a college or a university in Zambia is roughly $3,000 per year, for two, three, or four years, depending on the program. If sponsoring one of these higher-ed students is something you are interested in, please let us know and we will give you more information.