An interview with a young man who dreams of giving back to his community thanks to the opportunities education has provided him.

Here at Bread and Water for Africa UK, we are honored to partner with the amazing programmes in Africa that work so hard every day to ensure that tomorrow is a bit brighter for each child.

At the Kabwata Orphanage and Transit Centre in Zambia, “mum” Angela Miyanda ensures that the orphans that come her way are provided with every tool, necessity, support, and opportunity to build a future for themselves in spite of their difficult childhoods and pasts. Pyela Banda was one such child – now a young man! – and we had a chance to talk with him this past year about his final term studying water engineering at Lusaka Technical College.

Pyela, could you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Ah, I am 22 years old. I recently graduated from secondary and I am in my second year at Lusaka Technical College for my water engineering degree. One day I would like to pursue Agricultural Science and work on pipeline construction. I like playing football. I also have two sisters here at Kabwata.

And, how is it that you and your sisters ended up at Kabwata Orphanage and Transit Centre?

Well, I was about thirteen when my father died from HIV/AIDS. My mother, she had already died when my two sisters and I were very young, so after that…well it was just us. When my father was dying, he had tried to find someone to take care of us, but we didn’t have any other family to live with. But Mum (Mrs. Angela Miyanda) came after he passed and said that she would take care of us, and that we would be part of a new family.

Wow! And are you happy here?

Oh, yes! We know what the alternative could have been, and in the beginning we were just very happy to real beds, three meals each day, and clothing of our own. But now, I am a bit older, and I know how much Mum has really given us – today, we aren’t just orphans, we actually have a future. She made sure each of us was able to attend school each year and arranged for our school fees, books, and uniforms.

And how do you feel education is important to your future?

Well, it’s very hard to get a job in Zambia, and without a job it’s just impossible. A lot of children, even if they finish primary then they never go to secondary school (high school) because of the school fees, and that is a limitation. Because I have graduated secondary and am getting my technical degree, I can give back to my community after I leave Kabwata rather than fall into more bad times.

Why did you choose water engineering for your concentration in college?

It’s simple, it’s just that water and agriculture are universal needs. Everyone needs these things, and I want to ensure that every human being in Zambia can have access to both. I also enjoy working with my hands, so I hope to get a practical job in the field.