Each year, the Put Foot Rally Foundation uses money raised by participating teams to impact on the lives of local communities.
This year the Senkobo Basic School, about 30km outside of Livingstone in Zambia, were the chosen benefactors. The school has around 405 children aged between 7 and 16, of which around a third are orphans…
Rally cars drove in convoy through the streets of Livingstone, there was a definite atmosphere of excitement with mothers and grandmas singing and dancing on the side of the road leading to the school. I have never in my life felt more welcome than I did that day.
Our goal for the day was to re-surface a classroom floor, paint the walls, two soccer posts, two netball posts, and install some new nets and a water pump. But the major task was to give each child a pair of shoes – these kids walk long distances to get to school everyday, and many without anything to protect their feet.
But T.I.A (this is Africa)…and did she throw us a curve ball…half way through the proceedings of speeches from local dignitaries and chiefs the smell of smoke came drifting through the school. Like a premature sunset the light turned a golden brown, not something you would expect at midday…a smoke cloud bellowed its way over indicating a large fire was about to take hold of the car park, and with over 60 vehicles of all shapes and sizes this was a damn valuable patch of grass!
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As the smoke appeared the senior students ran out of the school grabbing large branches and dried grass, like a well drilled fire fighting team they began smothering small isolated pockets of fire. Any reserve manager in South Africa would have been very proud, and we were proud – the children distinguished the bush fire and saved the day.