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Last updated
Sunday September 06, 2015


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A Word From...

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© 2002 Kasisi Children's Home

 

Thanking you all


Tamara


Dear friends of Kasisi in Poland and all around the world, sending greeting to you all with a heart filled with many thanks and love. It is because of your generous hearts that I and my Kasisi brothers and sisters are able to live our lives filled with joy and so much energy, because of you many of us have been able to grow up in home without lacking anything.

When I first came to Kasisi in 1996 with my young sister, we were welcomed with so much love into the big family. Within a short period of time, I was surrounded by many children who came around me saying "a new kid" and they made friends with. Maybe not just friends but become my sisters and brothers without hesitation. These first encounters at Kasisi are what I consider 'a good time', the times I love the most, when we’re together as a family and we’re all so close. Talking about our favorite memories and laughing. This is what inspires me to go on even when faced with the world's challenges. The good times make the bad ones seem so small.

At Kasisi, Sr. Mariola emphasizes on the importance of education. I remember her giving us sweets or taking us to Kalimba farm (a reptile farm) if we passed our exams. She reinforces and encourages hard work, once you are educated, you have better chances at a bright future. I was able to finish my primary education at Kasisi Basic School and then went to boarding school at Kasisi Girls Secondary School where I finished my 12th grade.  I then had the opportunity to go to college at Pine Manor College in Boston, USA.

Coming to Pine Manor College as a freshmen was the biggest challenge for me, having come from a different country with a different culture, and leaving behind everyone and everything familiar to me. Almost everything was different and new to me.

To start with, I come from a very culturally different country from the United States. Zambia is a much smaller and a collective country compared to a much larger and individualistic U.S.A. Everything in the US is at a faster pace than in Zambia where people are in no rush in doing anything. Starting my first semester later than the students in my year was another challenge because students in my year already knew each other and I find it difficult socializing with a group of people that is already connected. As a result of my not being able to start conversations with a group of new people, I spent most of my time by myself being home-sick. In addition to the new place, new people, and new surroundings, it was freezing for me, it was the first time I experienced snow, I thought “how am I going to survive in this freezing new place where I know no one?”

The first day of class was another problem, I couldn’t find my classroom, why? Because I just couldn’t bring myself to talk and ask anyone for help. Because of my lack of communication, I spent 45 minutes walking around looking for my classroom, which I found eventually, but I had already lost too much time outside and missed most of the lesson. The other challenge I experienced was not knowing about the student portal (an online gateway containing information on courses offered, transcripts, email programs, timetables, exam schedules and homework/ assignments). I spent my time wondering why I had no homework for such a long time. I thought to myself, “What kind of college doesn’t give homework or assignments? if this is it, then my secondary school in Zambia was a hundred percent harder than college here”. Then one day, one of my professors asked me why I hadn’t handed in any homework for almost two weeks.  This is when I realized that it was time for me to start asking questions. I knew I had to start interacting with people if  I had to survive this place.

I made a lot of friends, my professors were helpful, and I finally found myself again. I did my best and graduated recently (May 11th) with 2 bachelor's degrees in Psychology and Management & Organizational Change. Now I plan to work for a year to gain experience then hopefully go on to obtain a masters degree. Right now I am not positive of where am heading but whatever I do my goal is to be the help for other children like me.

I just want to say thank you to everyone helping Kasisi Children's Home, I wouldn't have come this far without our help. Most importantly you have made it possible for me and the other children to have someone we call Mamusia. It is because of all of you that she has been able to be a great mother to us, providing us with love, care, and our basic needs. Thank you for helping me have a family. *I don't care how poor a man is; if he has family, he's rich. - Dan Wilcox

Tamara Sakala
  


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