|Given Mwila (right) during the interview with the author|
By Paul Shalala
She first came into the limelight as a mature Grade 12 pupil at Parklands Secondary School in Kitwe who was in the same class with her teenage son.
And that was last year when this blogger broke the story of Given Mwila on this blog and on Zambia's state TV.
This year her story has even gotten better.
Given has completed her Grade Twelve with a pass.
She had been in the same class with her son Chishala from Grade 10 at Parklands.
Having dropped out of school 20 years ago, Given returned to the classroom to finish secondary school with the hope of becoming a nurse in the near future.
She initially started in Grade eight and passed her Grade nine exams before proceeding to Grade 10.
Her dream is now getting clearer though she is saddened that her 19 year old son and classmate Chishala failed to make it, he failed.
Despite this, Given is happy that she made it against all odds.
“I didn’t expect myself to do well in the exam because I had challenges. I haven’t even formally collected my results because I didn’t finish paying my tuition fees. I got three merits and a credit,” said Given in an interview at her home in Kitwe’s Chimwemwe compound.
In October 2016 i profiled Given, following her from the time she woke up and prepared for school.
At school, I interviewed some of her classmates and teachers.
|Given (left), the author (middle) and |
her son Chishala (right) in this
photo taken October 2016 at Parklands
Secondary School in Kitwe
Given was an inspiration to all that’s why she was even selected as a Prefect.
And all that this mother of three wants to do in life is to be a nurse.
But due to lack of finances, she is appealing for sponsorship.
Her husband is partially blind and does not have an income
“Am appealing to anyone who is watching this interview, including the First Lady Mrs Esther Lungu to come and help me realize my dream of becoming a nurse. I want to excel higher than I have done,” she said.
With her results, Given can easily study nursing once she finds finances.
In Kitwe where she lives, there are nursing schools where she can enroll for the two year Zambia Enrolled Nurse (ZEN) certificate course or the three year Registered Nurse (RN) Diploma course.
In Zambia, women or girls who drop out of school can continue even after many years.
This is made possible through the Ministry of General Education’s new strategy called the Re-Entry Policy.
The policy is aimed at giving a second chance to those who are derailed in one way or another.
Given is a good example of the successful implementation of the Re-Entry policy.
EDITOR'S NOTE: This blogger also did a TV report of this story which aired on TV1's Morning Live program on 2nd March 2017. The YouTube link to the video is here