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Farai focused on uplifting lives of vulnerable people

FARAI Sylvia Liwewe is a determined and hardworking young woman, focused on achieving her goal of uplifting the lives of vulnerable people in society.
At the age of ten, Farai read an article in the newspaper which had made

headlines about a young girl who had been defiled by her stepfather.
The article broke her heart and she believes that triggered an exploration of her passion to help vulnerable young girls.
For three years now, Farai, 26, has been dealing with teen mothers and vulnerable girls through a Facebook page (Teen Motherhood) she runs with her colleagues.
The forum has gained an audience of teen mothers and vulnerable girls. Initially, mentorship and counseling was conducted online but after many girls opened up, the need to have physical meetings became evident.
Born to Liwewe Liwewe and Muzyanga in Lusaka, Farai, the first-born in the family of four ,prides herself in being the eldest grandchild on both sides of her family.
Over the years, she has learnt to appreciate the value and importance of the extended family, a lesson her late grandfather Dennis Liwewe always taught her.
“Being the oldest grandchild and child meant a lot of responsibilities. I remember growing up, my paternal grandfather would always request that my cousin and I tagged along to his motivational talks.
“We knew his talks so well that we would silently speak simultaneously and giggle in the back. He would constantly remind us about how he rose from his retrenchment, how he began to train himself as a commentator in the bush till he rose to be among the best African commentators in the world. “Always have the determination to succeed” “seek God first” “education is a priority” he would say”, she said.
Farai has remained with the principles she learnt from her late grandfather Dennis Liwewe, propelling her as a reservoir of strength and inspiration.
Now Chiefs Affairs Officer in Choma under Ministry of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs, Farai is a holder of a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Development Studies and minor in Sociology from the University of Zambia.
Her duties among many, include dealing with customs and traditions, an underlying factor to curbing early pregnancies and child marriages.
“My passion has always been to help the underprivileged and vulnerable girls. It breaks my heart when I think about how these girls have been hurt by those they trusted.
“The amount of emotional, physical and sexual violence they have been through. We would meet monthly to discuss ways in which together we could address societal challenges and also help them realise the potential they have to make a better living for themselves through the use of their skills,” she said.
In addressing issues surrounding vulnerability of young girls, Farai became a Copper Rose Volunteer, a youth-led organization concerned with matters of menstrual hygiene.
She has been speaking to communities on issues relating to teenage pregnancies.
When she moved to Choma in January 2016, she felt like her aspirations would have to be paused but now she believes God did not see it fit.
Farai is happy that she was approached to sit on a voluntary advisory board for the Musokotwane Compassion Mission Zambia.
“This took me by surprise. I was going to be the youngest board member. After our first board meeting, I realized that I needed to be more than just a board member, but to be actively involved in the Mission’s work”.
It was agreed that Farai assumes the role of Director of Programs and Resource Mobilisation on a voluntary basis. She was tasked with facilitating sponsorships for girls rescued from child marriages so far  and victims of teen pregnancies.
The Musokotwane mission also has upcoming programs that the girls undertake during weekends. Currently they have a mentorship and reading class, comprising five girls out of which four are under full scholarships.
Last month Farai pledged to help girls remain in school and to honor this pledge she intend to ensure that before the year ends, she places an extra 20 girls into school.
For future plans, Farai wants to reshape existing policies affecting vulnerable girls in society, taking into account the major contributions she will make by her research.
 She also belongs to Ladies Circle Zambia, an organisation of women aged between 18 and 45, which seeks to improve the livelihoods of the vulnerable through friendship and service.
Before she officially joined circle, Farai was awarded a Certificate of Appreciation for the contributions like raising school fees for 20 Children at Chikumbi Community School in Chisamba.
She said the Ladies Circle has helped her in many ways, such as boosting her self-confidence and also providing her with a family that gives her support even in activities that are not related to the  Circle.
At the end of last year, Farai prayed to God and asked him to take control and lead in 2017 and her request was answered she was recently awarded the 2017 Activist – Zambian Woman of the Year Award on March 7, 2017.
The award was based on votes from the general public. The award reminded Farai that others take notice of those who help with no ulterior motive and support them.
On March 10, 2017 based on the submission of her profile, Farai was also one of the ten 2017 Young African Women in Leadership Champions for her contribution in the community.
Early this month, Farai was offered place as a participant in the YALI Regional Leadership Center Southern Africa program which is four months long.
The initial phase of the application was easy as it was written and the terrifying part was the oral, but she went through once again.
Farai’s role models include Mizinga Melu, Brenda Muntemba and Dr Tukiya Kankasa- Mabula.
“These women remind me that the sky is not the limit.”
She is inspired by youths who are actually doing something for their communities, not for their personal gain but to profit their community.
“Every time I read about great things young people are doing, I get inspired. A thought we must rid of is that for young leaders to be accepted for many opportunities across the globe, many make assumptions that it’s all because of relations.
“To my fellow youths, I hope this quote may be a source of inspiration for you in the same manner it has been for me.
“When you are brilliant, hardworking and well-behaved, and contribute positively to the well-being of the country, no one will care where your grandparents came from – Dennis Liwewe,” she said.
Farai believes that those who are seemingly well off have the moral responsibility to help the less privileged. “Imagine if each one of us pledged to take one child to school, what a better place our country would be”.