Rhoda's Journey: A Testament to AYC's Impact

By Annabel Mumba
Annabel Mumba is AYC’s Donor Relations Coordinator in Zambia. She is a Scholarship Fund recipient, high school graduate and current college student, and also one of our Success Stories.

Co-written by Pamela O’Brien, African Education Program’s Development Director, who is mentoring Annabel as she pursues a journalism degree.


Rhoda enjoys teaching Native Games with the play-based learning curriculum.

Rhoda's remarkable journey from a challenging childhood in Zambia's Kafue District to becoming a Young Learners Teacher at the Amos Youth Centre (AYC) is a testament to the transformative power of education and the support offered by the organization.

Early Struggles and Determination

Growing up as the firstborn in a family facing economic hardships, Rhoda's parents worked tirelessly to make ends meet. Rhoda has one sister and a brother. Her mother has always worked as a maid and her father does small scale jobs in the community like bricklaying, plumbing, and gardening to support the family. Despite constant relocations and financial instability, Rhoda's mother's resilience played a crucial role in ensuring her children had access to an education. Facing setbacks, including a period of being unable to attend school due to financial constraints, Rhoda's determination was unwavering.

AYC: A Beacon of Hope

Rhoda's connection with AYC began in the sixth grade in 2015, thanks to a friend who introduced her to the center. Engaging in activities like the Music Club, Creative Club, Drama Club, and Spelling Bee Club at AYC opened up new avenues for Rhoda's personal and creative growth. The Creative Club encouraged her to think outside the box, while drama and music became sources of joy and self-discovery. Over time, Rhoda took the initiative to ensure that her younger sister joined the Amos Youth Centre, too. Thanks to the support provided by AYC, Blessings, Rhoda's sister, successfully completed her high school education last Fall and has a bright future ahead.

Educational Triumphs with AYC

Rhoda's formal education took her from Mutendere Primary School to Kafue Day Secondary School. However, her academic journey faced challenges when financial constraints almost halted her education. Before the introduction of free education by the Ministry of Education in 2022, it was mandatory for all students to pay secondary school fees in order to attend school. Active participation in AYC’s holistic programs, including the sponsorship program, allowed Rhoda to complete twelfth grade with commendable grades.

A Passion for Teaching Emerges

While Rhoda's childhood dream was initially to become a farmer and study Agriculture Science, her experiences teaching young learners at AYC ignited a new passion. After completing twelfth grade, she entered the College Prep Program at AYC, where she volunteered in the form of “giving back" by leading classes and activities for the younger girls and boys. It was through these interactions that she discovered a newfound passion for working with young children. Rhoda decided to choose the path of education, driven by the desire to make a positive impact on the lives of others. 

Today, Rhoda proudly serves as a Young Learner’s Teacher at AYC, imparting knowledge and inspiration to the next generation. AYC provided her not only with an education but also with a platform to give back and be a source of hope for others facing similar struggles.

Reflecting on her journey, Rhoda acknowledges the pivotal role AYC played in shaping her future. Beyond academic success, AYC became a place of personal and creative development, laying the foundation for Rhoda's current role as an inspirational Young Learners Teacher.

I have known Rhoda for nine years now. As a young girl she was very curious and often made friends laugh in our Girls’ Club called One Up for Girl Power. As she got older I noticed her passion for helping others and being a leader at the Centre. After high school Rhoda volunteered as a tutor in the Young Learners Department and her sessions were very lively. I observed that the learners were very comfortable around her. After several discussions about her career path and dreams, I suggested she apply for the Assistant Teacher position in the Young Learners Program. Rhoda was excited to apply because she enjoyed working with children. It is an honor to serve a community alongside a vibrant and passionate young woman like Rhoda and exciting to see her come full circle as a young learner to the teacher she is today.
— Lumuno Mweemba Chongo, Co-founder & Director of Programs, Amos Youth Centre

Rhoda enjoys tutoring the young learners in one-on-one sessions.

A Vision for the Future

Rhoda's future goal is to pursue a bachelor's degree in Early Childhood Education at Kwame Nkrumah University. She will be entering University this Fall, a testament to her unwavering commitment to continuous learning and personal growth. This opportunity will enable her to persist in inspiring and instructing the younger students while pursuing her studies. Additionally, she will gain valuable insights and enhanced methods to positively impact the lives of the young learners she engages with.

Rhoda's story is a beacon of hope and resilience, showcasing the transformative impact of AYC on the lives of young individuals. Her journey from a struggling student to a dedicated teacher stands as an inspiration for others, proving that with support, determination, and education, one can overcome adversity and achieve their dreams.



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