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Agriculture, Education & Training

Project Proposal

ZBF – An Overview
The Zimbabwe Benefit Foundation (ZBF) was established in 2004 against the
backdrop of a rapidly deteriorating humanitarian situation in Zimbabwe.

For the past two years ZBF’s main project focus was the ‘Helping Hands’ seed
pack project. This initiative provided seed inputs to over 30,000 small scale
subsistence farmers in Zimbabwe.

In September 2009 ZBF launched an

emergency school fee appeal. In the past year
ZBF has paid for more than 50 children to
attend school across the country.

In 2011 ZBF will utilise its experience in these

fields to combine its work in agriculture and
education, providing tailor made assistance to
ten primary schools in Zimbabwe.

ZBF is going to be working with ten rural
primary schools in the Manicaland province
of Zimbabwe. Manicaland is an agriculturally
rich and fertile province although is
underfunded in terms of international donor support.

Primary schools were selected according to the following criteria:

• A minimum of 50% of the children at the school unable to pay school fees
• The presence of an adequate water source to facilitate an agricultural project
• Agriculture is being taught in the schools
• There is a committed leadership team in a strong and willing community

The ZBF Project
The ZBF project will comprise of two main components: the payment of school
fees and the provision of agricultural inputs to ten primary schools in Zimbabwe.

In a country with a 95% unemployment rate the majority of parents in Zimbabwe

are unable to pay for their children’s school fees. This means that every day, despite
a government directive, many children are turned away from school and
denied a basic education.

ZBF plans to address this issue by paying for

children’s school fees thereby enabling them to
attend school.

By working in ten schools this will provide access

to education for thousands of children in

School Fees
For children of primary school age in Zimbabwe the cost of school fees is
just $10 per term, or $30 for the year.

In each school, ZBF hopes to cover a minimum of 15% of children’s fees,

subject to funding. Ideally we would like to pay for all children at each of
the schools we are working with.

The average primary school in Zimbabwe has around 500 students. To pay
for every single student to attend school for one year it would cost $15,000 /

[It costs £9,954 to send a child for one term at Eton]

Therefore to pay for all children at ten primary schools

to attend school for the entire year would cost
$150,000 / £92,250
What school fees could do…
The money received from school fees mean everything to schools in Zimbabwe. This is because it is the
only form of income they receive. By paying a child's fees a donor is therefore achieving three things:
- Getting a child into education
- Providing essential education resources in that school
- Improving the quality of teaching in that school

Getting a child into education

To ensure each child paid for is identified & in school, ZBF will carry out the following checks:
- ZBF UK & Zimbabwe Project managers will meet with Headmaster, Senior teachers, the School
development committee (made up of elected parents) to identify the children being supported
- A list will be drawn up of those children who are receiving school fee support
- A letter will be sent to their parents informing them of this support
- The ZBF project manager will check weekly that all children paid for are in school

In addition, in the short term, this is what payment of school fees could achieve:

• Allow children to experience one of their most basic rights: an education

• Increase gender equality and improve female education
• Reduce the occurrence of child labour
• Improve the chances of future generations Zimbabwe

What school fees could do…
Providing essential education resources in that school

The money received for school fees can be used by beneficiary schools to begin to address the huge lack of
resources that challenge learning everyday. This will work as follows:
- Money for school fees per school will be calculated on a term by term basis
- Consultations between ZBF staff, teachers and the SDC will take place to discuss what the priorities
are in terms of materials required by schools
- ZBF will then facilitate the purchase of the identified items

Therefore the £20 it costs to send a child to year will in the end purchase 50 pencils, 5 boxes of chalk or 1
new desk for a school in Zimbabwe.

Improving the quality of teaching in that school

As the enrollment increases at the ten schools

ZBF is working with, the Ministry of Education
will be notified by the school. Once notified they will
send more teachers to the school who will be of a better
standard as is the procedure in Zimbabwe.
This means by getting more children into school there
will be a better student to teacher ration and that the
standard of teaching across the whole school should improve.

The ZBF Project
The second part of the ZBF project will provide
the schools themselves with agricultural inputs
and training. Each school will receive a tailor
made programme incorporating the following

Training: Children, staff and members of the

surrounding community will be selected and
trained in best agricultural practice.

Support: Sufficient seed inputs & farming tools

will be supplied to each school so that they can
grow enough food to provide a meal for every
child, every day.

Empowerment: Each school will grow a cash

crop which can be sold to raise much needed
capital for the school and ensure their self-
sufficiency in the future. 8
• Agricultural curriculum
• Impractical methods
• Underfunded
• Unemployment


ZBF plans to increase the skills of agricultural teachers in schools by providing

them with specialist training in best farming practice.
In doing so, ZBF wants to:
* Ensure schools are capable of making the most of agricultural inputs they receive
* Enhance teachers ability to train others at schools and in the community
* Engage and educate children in farming practice


ZBF is working with the leading agricultural training providers in Zimbabwe,

Foundations for Farming who have developed a teacher specific training
programme to educate teachers in the most efficient farming methods.

Two teachers from every school supported by ZBF will attend at three day
workshop at the Foundations for Farming headquarters in Harare.

Once trained, teachers will return to schools and establish demonstration plots.
These 6mx6m areas of land will be used in providing practical education to
each child of the most effective farming methods.

An FFF representative will visit each school once every 3 months to assess the
effectiveness of the project & provide additional season specific training. In
addition, monthly training sessions will be organised at each school by all
selected teachers which members of the surrounding community can attend in
order to increase their knowledge and enhance their skills.

Support & Nutrition
• Long days
• Long distances
• Staying at home
• Lack of finances


ZBF wants to assist schools in cultivating nutrition gardens onsite so that a meal
can be provided to every child, every day. In doing so ZBF wants to:
* Give schools the capacity to grow enough food to feed all students each day
* Reduce student hunger from the classroom and improve learning
* Improve school attendance by providing a meal

Support & Nutrition

As part of the training they receive at Foundations for Farming,

teachers will learn how to establish a nutrition garden. This will
be set up in advance of the school year beginning in January.

This plot will be around a hectare depending on the size of the

school and the number of students. The main crop grown will be
Maize, the staple food source in Zimbabwe. In addition a green
vegetable such as rape will be grown to provide added
nutritional value.

ZBF will identify the requirements of each school & will provide
the seed inputs, farming tools and fertiliser necessary to set up a
successful & functioning garden. A copy of the UN’s FAO
manual ‘Setting up and running a school garden’ will be
distributed to each school.

Each school will be provided with the basic cooking equipment

to utilise when preparing and serving lunch everyday.
• Lack of materials
• School fees
• Sustainability
• Limited government funding

ZBF is going to work with schools to establish agriculturally focused income
generating projects. In doing so ZBF will:
* Create a guaranteed source of income for schools in a challenging environment
that can replace over time the need to charge school fees
* Enable the purchase of much needed materials
* Educate children about the power & opportunities of income generation


• In December and January consultations will be held

between the schools and ZBF to identify the most
appropriate income generating project accounting for
the variables of available space, expertise and

• In advance of the school year commencing, ZBF will

provide all necessary farming inputs, tools and
assistance to establish the project. Subsequently the
ZBF consultant will visit each empowerment plot
once a week to monitor progress

• ZBF will assist schools in identifying a target market

for their produce & facilitate the relationship with the
consumer, ensuring that schools are getting the best

• ZBF will then work with schools to prioritise need &

ensure that monies earned from the projects are spent
on the areas of most pressing need
Every school will have..
A nutrition garden of about 1 hectare
where maize is grown
A demonstration plot
measuring 6 x 6

A market garden where a cash

crop is grown to generate
income for the school

Total for off site training: $3960 / £2,500
Total for on-site training: $12,000 / £7,500
Total training cost per school $1,560 / £960
Total training cost for a year $15,960 / £10,000


Agricultural & farming inputs - Total per school $2,500 / £1,540
Agricultural & farming inputs – Total $25,000 / £15,400
Cooking equipment - Total per school $225 / £140
Cooking equipment – Total $2,250 / £1,400
Total nutrition cost per year per school $2,725 / £1,675
Total nutrition cost for a year $ 27,250 / £16,750

Total per school $900 / £550
Total $9,000 / £5,500
Fund of $300 per school to facilitate additional income generating activities in the surrounding communities utilising schools
as the centres of the community. Total for all schools: $3,000
Total empowerment cost per school per year $1,200 / £750
Total empowerment cost per year $12,000 / £7,500

Total cost of implementing a ZBF agriculture project per school per year £3,385
Total cost of implementing a ZBF agriculture project in ten schools £34,250
The Total Cost
The cost of assisting a school for a year
Total cost of implementing a ZBF agriculture project £3,385
Total cost of paying all school fees (approximately) £9,225
Total cost of assisting a school for a year £12,610

The total cost of assisting ten schools for a year

Total cost of implementing a ZBF agriculture project £34,250
Total cost of paying all school fees (approximately) £92,250
Total cost of assisting ten school for a year £126,500

If ZBF is able to raise £126,500 we will

be able to provide the support outlined
in this proposal to ten primary schools
this year in Zimbabwe.

Due to the scale of this project and the expertise required, ZBF is going to appoint
a new full time project consultant. This individual will be responsible for the
implementation, monitoring and development of the project.

In addition, the ZBF Programmes Manager from London will travel to Zimbabwe
to co-ordinate and oversee the initial stage of the project. They will spend a day at
each school at the start of the school year in January 2011 reporting on the
establishment of the various agricultural projects & delivering the payment of
school fees. This is in order to provide additional security & accountability.

In Zimbabwe there are 5,575 primary schools. In the province of Manicaland there
over 1,000. Over the course of the first year the ZBF project consultant will work to
identify a further 10-20 schools which subject to funding could be assisted in 2012.

The Three Year Plan..
ZBF would like to see a three year engagement plan with each school. This is in
order to develop a strong working relationship & achieve real and lasting impact.

Financially the amount required to support each school will decrease with each
year of involvement. This will be the result of several factors.
1. Many of the basic materials provided in the first year will not need to be re-provided
(farming tools, cooking equipment etc)
2. The income earned from the income generating projects will be providing materials
to the school that will over time reduce the need for school fees.

Year One - £12,610

Year Two - £10,000

Year Three - £7,000

In the fourth year we would like to withdraw leaving the schools efficient & empowered.

A monthly direct debit of £20 will get 12 children back into school

See 10 children through 5 years of primary school for £1000

Make a commitment to sponsor a whole class of 40 children for 5 years of primary

school with a one-off donation of £4,000

Sponsor a whole school of 250 children for 5 years of primary school for £25,000