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A Life Changing Expedition to Africa

Date Posted: 02/09/2013 | Posted In: Latest news

Students from QE experienced a life changing trip to Botswana and Zambia over the summer.

The expedition was the outcome of two years of fundraising for the students and was organised with the help of World Challenge, a youth development organisation.  Camping for over 30 nights, the 15 students and 2 members of staff took part in community projects with local children and people and enjoyed very different cultural experiences.

Teacher, Beccy Stannard was one of the expedition’s leaders. She takes up the story:

‘On arrival in Botswana, we were thrown straight in the deep end and wild-camped for 5 days in the Kalahari Desert with the Bushmen. We had to immediately adapt to having no running water, no showers and no toilets in the African heat. The Bushmen demonstrated how to survive in the desert, with a number of medicinal plants, and how to build a home out of branches!  A real eye-opening experience! The Kalahari was followed by a mokoro ride down the Okavango Delta where once again we wild- camped amongst elephants, zebras, giraffes and hippos, cooking on an open fire and drinking Delta water.

Upon leaving Botswana, we had the unforgettable chance to experience a sunset boat safari down the Zambezi, again seeing every animal imaginable. We then travelled to Zambia where we began our community project. Whilst camping in a little town called Mwandi, the students worked as a team to build two mud houses for under-privileged families.  One of the houses was for a grandmother who was raising her four grandchildren who had lost their parents to HIV. The expedition was rounded off with a celebratory meal in a local restaurant back in Livingstone, a definite improvement on some of the food endured along the way! ‘

To conclude, Beccy says:

‘The students enjoyed the challenge and all got stuck in without question. They worked incredibly hard both fundraising before the expedition and whilst we were there. They were excellent ambassadors for the College and it was definitely a life changing experience. The staff and students would to thank everyone who supported them, without whom the expedition could not have happened.‘