Zambia YMCA held their first ever National youth camp. The camp was held at Da Canton Conference in Livingstone with over 150 youth represented from all the 9 local associations. The camp started with a walk in the streets of Livingstone to Da Cantan Conference Centre
Among the guests present at the camp included Minister of Youth, sports and child development Mr Emmanuel Mulenga, Livingstone Mayor Mr Mapuwo Eugene and the Zambia YMCA National President Mr Antony Ranjan and AAYMCA.
The leaders pledged support for the young people saying their empowerment means Zambia empowerment. They urged the youth present not to be afraid going for their dreams, saying nothing is impossible to achieve. The Minister gave his life history saying he is a young person but because he went after what he wanted, the President saw his efforts and gave him the role. He was proud of the youth who attended saying it was a sign that they are responsible young people.
The Mayor urged the young people to take tour of Livingstone and explore the beautiful sights available in Livingstone. He was so proud to have worked with YMCA and pledged to continue working together if asked to.
The program was jam packed and educative. The youth were taken through how to live a purposeful life, Christian values, YMCA values, entrepreneurship skills, Self-awareness and self-Identity, servanthood leadership and leadership skills.
The young people present discussed and agreed on their strategic plan for 2020/2022. Among the resolutions they passed include, planting one million trees in the nine provinces in Zambia. Recruiting one million youth to the YMCA across Zambia and setting up social enterprises to help them generate income and become self-sustainable.
Zambia YMCAs’ work began in 1958 when Zambia, together with Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) and Nyasaland (now Malawi) formed the Central African Federation. Local associations were established in Kitwe, Ndola, Kabwe and Lusaka. The Kitwe YMCA was extended to other areas using schools, playing fields and other facilities. Today, there are 9 local Associations throughout nine provinces in Zambia. Programmes to alleviate poverty and eradicate illiteracy became the primary thrust of Zambia YMCA. Education was seen as a pre-requisite to fight poverty. Most of the local associations have pre-schools and pre-school colleges. The focus has now changed to include the empowerment of young people through leadership development, empowered decision-making and civic involvement as well as youth employment and entrepreneurship.
Work with play makes Jack a dull boy, to wrap up the camp, the youth were taken to a boat cruise at River Zambezi and visit to Victoria falls. It was a sight to behold. Africa is beautiful.