Poetry for Conservation in Zimbabwe

A few quick updates…

All is well at Umtshibi Pre-school in Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe, the outdoor play area is in good shape and the children are enjoying the new facilities. At the moment, registered students  are fewer than last year, due to the rotation of National Park workers. However, all is well and they are enjoying themselves.

The foundation is slowly beginning to grow, which is extremely exciting. The number of permanent staff members has more than doubled. They’re all working extremely hard and are coming up with some exciting future events that I can’t wait to be able to tell you about.

World Poetry Day

I’ve always been a lover of poetry. My grandfather used to write and read poems to me as a child and at school I was very passionate about it. I love how strong messages and ideas can be communicated in a typically short form of writing. Poems, short or long form, can inspire change in an engaging way. Robert Frost is a favourite poet of mine, his comments on nature and the world surrounding him have always struck a chord with me, he writes about landscape, animals and nature with such love and care.

At schools in Zimbabwe, Zambia and Botswana, that the African Bush Camps Foundation partners with, ‘Conservation Clubs’ are supported to provide practical, fun environmental education learning opportunities for students. Activities, games and literature are used to stimulate young children into understanding the environment around them. Safari guides go to the schools and give talks about the dangers to wildlife and ecosystems from plastic, fire, deforestation, etc and the children are able to learn fun facts about wildlife living within the their surrounding environment. They can talk to the guides about their own futures and what careers, associated with helping the environment, could be an option for them.

In celebration of World Poetry Day, I’d like to share a feature from one of the children at ‘Main Camp Primary School’ in Zimbabwe (a school I actually passed through on my last visit). The students there have been reading and understanding poems that bring to their attention strong environmental issues. Simbai Maurukira, who is 10 years old, was chosen to recite a poem written by her teacher about caring for nature. The aim of all the clubs is to inspire young people to engage in positive, creative ways to raise awareness around environmental issues and ways of living that are harmonious with the natural environment. They hope to stimulate others into action and for people to look after the world around them; a message that I believe is relevant to all countries and not just ones within Africa. After hearing about the children at Main Camp Primary School, I think their passion for change is amazing and surely we can all learn from them?

We are often so caught up in our day to day lives, and sometimes quick to discard items that could otherwise be recycled, and, in the moment, we don’t think of the impact of our actions. If we all make it a priority, we can make a change, and this is what Simbai talks about. I was certainly inspired, and I hope you will be too.

For these conservation clubs to keep running and inspiring kids to grow up loving and protecting the world around them the ABC Foundations are aiming to raise US$5,600 and needs your help. Please head here: https://www.africanbushcampsfoundation.org/project/school-conservation-clubs/

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