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‘Out of Africa’ Emma and Hilary venture to Zambia

Todays Out of Africa

Today’s Group Marketing Assistant Emma Down and Trading Controller Hilary Nithsdale set off today to travel to Zambia for a week-long visit to see how Today’s fund raising activities and the Well Good Appeal has changed the lives of so many people in the region. Village Water is one of Today’s chosen charities.

Our intrepid pair will be flying, driving and hiking across the country to see how the Today’s Group Charitable Foundation has made a difference to the lives of villagers and their children. During their travels, they will visit villages, including Ilalamupa, where children have benefited from a new water pump, as well as schools and an orphanage, to truly understand how the people of Zambia live.

Emma said: “We’re expecting it to be a real eye opener for both Hilary and I – however, I think it’s vital that we truly understand how the Zambian people live and how the money Today’s raises helps them. It is all well and good hosting charity dinners and events, but at Today’s we are all passionate about giving something back, particularly to children, so it’s important we see the impact of what we do for ourselves.”

For the next seven days, whilst in Zambia, Hilary and Emma will be blogging their experiences, so please check back for daily updates!


Day 1 Always get to the airport early Last supper... ...and second last supper Only 3629 miles to go
 All ready for the off!  Always get to
the airport early.
 The last supper…  … and the second
last supper.
 Only 3629 miles to go!



Today we drove 360 miles from Lusaka to Mongu, a journey of 9 hours with the last hour of the journey in a horrific thunderstorm with torrential rain. We bought Zambian Sim Cards but Zambia Telecom had an upgrade last week and nothing has worked since but we’ve still managed to find pockets of Wi-Fi to check our e-mails!

Ayleisha Trip to buy zambian sim Trip to buy zambian sim ii Stop for supplies! Our driver
Ayleisha – Village
Water Zambia
 Trip to buy Zambian Sim Cards  …and stop for supplies!  Our driver for the next
350 miles (Lusaka
to Mongu)



Today we visited the Today’s village  – Village Water in Ilalamupa, it was 30 degrees at 8am!

Comfort stop! Elephant! Driving into a thunderstorm Village Water - Zambia
Comfort stop!
(which cost 2 Kwachas)
Elephant! Driving into
a Thunderstorm!
Arriving at Village
Water Zambia



Today we saw a new well being dug to help another village in Zambia and were treated to traditional dancing by the local girls.




Today we visited a local school, saw the breathtaking sunset at Kafue lake and spotted some home comforts in local stores!

IMG_4116 Sunset IMG_4151 IMG_4088
At School Sunset at Kafue lake Premier foods
Look what we found!


Our intrepid explorers made it back home from their ‘Out of Africa’ journey in one piece, but with some incredible memories.

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Trading Controller Hilary talked about her experiences with Village Water in Zambia:

“The clean water pump is the carrot but clean water is not the total output. The output is Health Improvement and Disease reduction.

Disease reduction is not just the absence of disease; it is about Mental, Physical, Social and Spiritual health.

Before Village Water install a pump into any village, they have to pass a Village Assessment which means that each household must have hand washing facilities (A tippy tap), a toilet and a dish rack and the village has to be tidy and free from refuse and waste.

We went on a “roller coaster” of emotions, we saw villages with water, villages without water, villages just getting water, a school, an orphanage, hope, joy, despair . We met children who walked 10km in 35 degrees to go to school.

We saw the self-esteem that clean water can bring; clean clothes, clean bodies, clean children, crops, drinking water, saving time not having to walk to fetch clean water. We saw the pride in the villages that had passed the assessments and either had or were getting the water pump. We saw the despair in the villages that did not have water.

A Village elder asked us how he could be a better leader to his people: I replied that he had already taken the first step by applying for a pump.

“An elephant does not feel the weight of his tusks” he said, i.e.  a leader does not feel the weight of leading his people.

The elections will bring politicians to the Villages and they will give out money and lobby so that the villagers vote for them, then they will rely on NGO’s such as Village water to install the water pumps.

So…What else did we learn?

Never travel without a mosquito net, and turn your boots upside down at night!”

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