“Life in the compound is difficult.”
The compound is a nearby village characterized by drunkenness and fighting and is home to many of the students who attend Lifesong School in Garneton, Zambia.
The Lifesong Zambia team knew they needed to do something to help students living in the compound who needed a safer place to live and study, so they created a boarding option called Student Life Homes. Majer Lumwira is a teacher and a houseparent. He’s been part of Lifesong Zambia since 2015. In his words—
“Life in the compound is difficult. Our boys and girls are coming from broken families where they feel no hope.”
Majer believes the Student Life Homes began in direct response to the students’ cry for help. Recently, Majer spoke to our team and explained more about this cry. Take a look—
“They don’t have their fathers.”
In poverty-stricken communities like Garneton, children are often left to fend for themselves while parents desperately search for ways to feed and care for the family. Without proper motivation, many children end up dropping out of school, leaving little to no hope of breaking the poverty cycle.
The compound is not a good environment for students to thrive in their education or grow in their relationship with Christ.
In Zambia, 4 in 10 girls don’t attend high school. Many girls marry before they reach age 18 or rely on prostitution in order to survive. Boys learn to get what they want by fighting for it or just taking it.
In Majer’s words, “Most of the students—before they came to the boarding program—lived a life that wasn’t pleasing before God. They don’t have their fathers. They’re living with their uncles. They don’t have good relationships with their families.”
“Hope has come.”
During the first year of Student Life Homes, 18 girls and 23 boys were given a place to live.
Today, nearly 200 students live in our Student Life Homes and have a safe, loving home environment with 24 Christian house parents. In the Student Life Homes, each student receives a safe place to live, study, and learn responsibility under the discipleship and care of a Christian family.
Our team connects with children from the compound through our school. And from there, they identify the most vulnerable among our students. At this point, the Student Life Homes are for students in grades 7 through 12, with the exception of one home for some high-risk girls. The students in our Student Life Homes have been students at Lifesong since preschool.
“When Lifesong began, we felt hope had come. And for sure we can testify that hope has come.”
Majer Lumwira Teacher & Houseparent
Costance is in Grade 12 and has lived in a Student Life Home for 5 years. Recently he said—
“Boarding has been a good place for me. It has helped me a lot—spiritually, physically, and mentally. The parents we have in boarding are so helpful in terms of studying, reading the Bible, and making sure we understand everything we are reading. So boarding is actually one way we are being led to Christ. It’s because we’re able to learn every single day about Jesus Christ.”
“We’ve seen what God can do.”
Gift, Grade 11, hopes to study medicine and become a doctor someday. Her life has changed through the Student Life Homes—
“I came to know about Jesus Christ with the help of Pastor Maron. Through his preaching, I came to realize that I needed to give my life to God. I decided to follow Jesus. And boarding has really helped me grow spiritually through all the Bible studies we have together.”
In the words of Racheal, a houseparent in one of the girls’ homes, “We have seen what God can do in the children’s lives. There’s so much transformation through devotions, through Wednesday Bible study, and through sharing in each other’s lives.”
“As house parents, we are also being changed.”
Gift and Costance are an example of what happens when vulnerable kids are given the opportunity to live in a safe, supportive Christian family environment.
“Thank God for the people who started this program.”
With your support and the hard work of a team of Zambian nationals, Lifesong Zambia established a school almost a decade ago for the purpose of providing over 300 orphaned and vulnerable children a quality Christian education. Additionally—through the vision and funding of people like you—Student Life Homes were constructed to serve as a safe haven for older students who lived in the compound.
These kids don’t just have a safe place to live and have their daily needs met—Student Life Homes make spiritual growth a priority.
“We have daily Bible study in the homes, a weekly Bible Study (Ukubyala) on Wednesday evenings as a group, and discipleship groups on Saturday mornings. Thank God for the people who started this program”
For many orphaned and vulnerable kids, the Student Life Homes make all the difference.
When you support Student Life Homes in Zambia, you give students like Gift and Costance the opportunity to become leaders in their community. Your gifts support Christian education, discipleship, and orphan prevention.
Together, let’s reach more young people in Zambia for the glory of God.