Deputy Chief Mafikizolo, 60

I was born in Pandamatenga in the year 1958. Ever since that year and the day I was born, I wanted to see this village grow and change. Growing up here, I remember going to school and walking 6 km every day through bushes and mud for education; it was hard and tiring. Monday mornings were the hardest; children do not eat during the weekends, so they are all so tired when walking to school in the morning. There were days when I received strict punishment for being late. The same problem still arises today; children walk 6 km to school with no food or water in their bodies. I would love to see the children receive transportation for the school; they really do deserve it, after their hard work and love for education. Overall, there are so many things that the villagers need and, as the deputy, it is really hard to please everyone. But, I really do try to focus on the children and their education, since that determines our future in Pandamatenga. In 1966, the school I went to was made out of mud and there was only one teacher; it was very difficult learning in that environment, but I am happy I was given the opportunity. It is good to see the school here change and develop into a better learning environment. I would love for the kids to start learning in English at a younger age; now, kids only start learning it in Primary School.

This village is developing. The playground that was just installed and funded by the Ambassadors was such an intelligent idea because part of education, is learning how to play freely, safely and together. This is an environment where kids can learn from each other and make new friends. On Saturday and Sunday’s the children will have a safe environment to be in. Previously, the children would wander the streets, which is very dangerous because adults would often use vulgar words, fight and drink alcohol - this is not an environment where children can learn, I do not want them to develop bad habits. My goal is to help the children in Pandamatenga learn; this goes beyond the classroom. I want them to develop into good people and to really make a difference here in the village.

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