At its core, SEPO understands education to be one of the best pathways to community-defined progress and improved futures for all. In Zambia, a focus on education is a critical component of SEPO’s work as nearly 50% of the population is under the age of 15 (as compared to 19% in the U.S.). The average number of years of schooling for a Zambian youth is 7 years, meaning that most kids (especially those in rural areas like Mabumbu) do not make it to Grade 8 or beyond. These realities make the work of widening and deepening educational experiences particularly important.
With that in mind, SEPO’s educational outreach has focused on elementary school students. SEPO Zambia directly partners with Kalangu Basic School in Mabumbu area in numerous efforts to improve the infrastructure, resources, and opportunities for Mabumbu children. Kalangu serves approximately 500 students – ranging from Grade 1 through Grade 9 – in four classrooms with only 12 teachers. Our efforts in the last several years have focused on improving infrastructure and access at Kalangu by constructing a new classroom.