Chisany orphanage is not something you can find on Google. Maybe because it’s far away from everything. Except borders of Angola and DR Congo. It is located in Mwinilunga, North Western Zambia, two days travel from Lusaka. My primary destination were the polling stations, as I arrived there as an EU election observer in September 2011. Nevertheless, a strange coincidence (and there is no such thing as coincidence) brought me to a humble house with only six beds – a home to orphans who lost their parents to AIDS.
For many children in Zambia, the loss of parents brings destitution, an end to schooling and stigmatization by family and neighbors. For those who do not find bed in one of very few orphanages, there are only the streets of Zambia’s cities, where children, lacking adult supervision and a stable home, survive by begging, prostitution and petty crime.
The Chisany orphanage is run by a woman of a distinctive name – Beauty. Beautiful is the way she takes care of them, struggling to provide them with clothes, decent meals, schooling and, since recently – with a new home. Every time there is a donation, few meters of bricks are being purchased and built into the construction which is overlooking the beautiful Mwinilunga river. With a little help it will grow into new, bigger home to orphaned children in the area.