2008 Zimbabwe BRPID Projects

Zimbabwe BRPID Projects 

Zimbabwe: Scholarship Programme for Girls

Zimbabwe Association of University Women

The political, economic and social situation in Zimbabwe, compounded by the HIV/AIDS pandemic, has had a dramatic effect on the education of girls and young women. The National Scholarship Fund of the Zimbabwe Association of University Women (ZAUW) continues, despite the heavy burden of a national inflation rate over 165,000%, to provide funds to help deserving female students continue their education.

Each year an increasingly large number of children have to drop out of school as parents struggle to pay school fees. This fund requires head teachers of 20 rural high schools to put forward names of deserving girls who need financial support. ZAUW members screen the applications and make offers of funding to those girls who qualify in terms of proven academic performance.

In 2007 it was possible to fund 8 senior high school students. Some were taking O-level and A-level examinations. One of the recipients was able to complete her a level studies successfully, and has now been accepted for further studies at a tertiary institution. She is still being supported. All recipients of awards are monitored throughout the academic year.

Spiralling inflation in 2007 meant that many schools put their fees up more than once during the academic year, which meant that there was no longer an official fee structure and as a result ZAUW ws unable to meet additional requests for funding.

2008 saw further dramatic rises in the inflation rate and school fees now vary considerably from school to school. ZAUW continues to try to fund as many girls as possible in these difficult circumstances.

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