A Pencil per Child: Rachel Chard’s Noble Quest

I must admit that I have no idea who Rachel Chard is. But she was featured on a blog I sometimes read, Selentine. The article “Rachel Chard and her quest to raise 10000 pencils” says:

From time to time I find inspiration in different things and places. One of the initiatives that caught my eye recently was by the efforts of a young Zimbabwean lady called Rachel Chard, she is a 23 year old who studied Hospitality Management and is awaiting graduation. She is an animal rights activist and has just recently started her charity organisation called Raising Hope which is looking to donate pencils to the less fortunate school children.

via Selentine

A considerate young woman I think who deserves our support.

Reminded me of when I was growing up in the village back in the late nineties. Some kids could not afford pencils, which may seem surprising to some of you. But despite the (relatively) low cost of pencils there are many Zimbabwean children who do not afford them.

A pencil can change the world
A pencil can change the world

This is also a sad reflection of the nation’s state of affairs. At a time when computer literacy is becoming mandatory in developed countries, and coding is taught in schools, we are still unable to make sure that we have enough pencils and books for our future leaders.

While in other countries there are plans to teach young people to solve technical problems using computers here we have some children who have never seen a computer, much less used one. We are destroying the future.

Which is why I support the actions of organisations like One Laptop per Child, which manufactures and distributes low cost laptops to kids in developing nations. We are behind, and we desperately need to catch up.

We really need to do more to improve our education and introduce computing and computers in schools. We can all play our small parts.

In the meantime we can support Rachel Chard in her quest to raise 10000 pencils.


PS: You can email Rachel Chard at rachelchard33@yahoo.com.

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Tawanda Moyo

Author: Tawanda Moyo

Villager, Itinerant, Engineer, Reader

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