Fundraising in Zimbabwe
Father Nigel, a Jesuit priest originally from Wimbledon who now lives in Zimbabwe, shares with us some of the fundraising work that they have been doing locally in Harare, Zimbabwe. The development office is where Jesuit Missions send their donations to ensure the money is distributed directly to those in most need.
Six years ago we set up a Development Office here in Zimbabwe. The aim was to raise funds to support our apostolic works here, and to oversee the continuation and development of those works.
The bulk of these funds are raised by the Jesuit Mission offices in UK and Germany, and from other Jesuit and Catholic agencies in Europe. However, one of our important roles is also to raise what funds we can locally here in Africa. So, we have assembled a local team of laypeople, who put enormous energy and creativity into their work.
Every parish here has several women’s groups as well as different sections of the parish, donating what they can to support our orphanage at Makumbi Mission. They then go for a day’s outing to visit the children and present their gifts.
We have also managed to get support from companies. Old Mutual Insurance donated an electric generator to the Zambuko rehabilitation centre for street children, thereby enabling metal welding classes to continue during power cuts.
The local phone company, Econet, fitted new wardrobes at Makumbi orphanage. At the same time one of the company directors came out to stay overnight and spend time getting to know the children. Since then she has been sponsoring the girls with clothes and school fees.
On the feast of St Ignatius each year we hold an auction. It’s not a bargain-hunting auction, but a charity auction, where people come to enjoy out-biding each other in their generosity. They really enjoy paying much higher amounts than the items are really worth.
So, while we still rely very much on the generosity of our Jesuit Missions supporters, I hope you are encouraged to know that, here in Zimbabwe, those who are able also do what they can to support these good works.