International Service Program

The Cromwell College Mission Statement encourages in all students a willingness to serve. The Values Statement underneath it identifies six areas where students can grow in knowledge and character. The Zambia Service Project creates a unique opportunity for committed students to significantly value add to themselves, and more importantly to others. 

The Zambia Service Project was chosen for a number of reasons. There are many worthwhile service programs domestically and abroad. The Project was brought to my attention by a Cromwell student from South Africa in October 2013, whose family had been significantly involved for many years. We then conducted our own research into the Project, followed by a visit in February 2014. 

What we liked about the Project was its aim to empower local people and to develop within them the necessary skills and training to become more self-sufficient. It was not about just the raising and giving of money or possessions; in fact the Project advised against that. The cliché “give someone a fish and they will eat a meal, but teach them how to fish and they will eat for a lifetime” is an apt description of the philosophy. 

Another positive to us was the tyranny of distance. To be involved, students would need to be motivated and committed enough to earn the funds to fly seventeen hours to the other side of the world, and then another ten hours in a minibus, to immerse themselves for a fortnight in a third world culture and abject poverty and disease so totally foreign to that of home. Being clearly well off any tourist routes, the Project was clearly volunteering and not "voluntouring".

The inaugural Cromwell team of 7 students and 2 staff served at the ‘Village of Hope’ near Mongu, Zambia in July 2014.

The links below will give you more detailed information in both written, pictorial and video form about the Zambia Service Project in action, but from me, some comments to those who may be considering becoming involved:

The Project is not for the faint hearted. It is confronting, It is hard work physically and mentally. If you can’t live without social media, hot water, junk food, alcohol or dressing to look cool to impress, then don’t become involved. If material things mean more to you than values then the project is not for you. If on the other hand you are none of those things, but are prepared to put yourself at the disposal of others, leap rather than step outside your comfort zone, serve under pressure in hot, dry and sandy conditions with basic, intermittent facilities, and be a true servant to others who will appreciate you more than they can ever express, then consider finding out more and becoming involved. 

Why Become Involved? Why Become Involved? (237 KB)

Boiling Pot at Victoria Falls Boiling Pot at Victoria Falls (18166 KB)

Cromwell Teaching Class Cromwell Teaching Class (11314 KB)

Cromwell Team Video Cromwell Team Video (250129 KB)

Sunset Floodplain and VOH School Sunset Floodplain and VOH School (18235 KB)

VOH School Lunchtime VOH School Lunchtime (10995 KB)

Zambia Service Project - Testamonials Zambia Service Project - Testamonials (414 KB)