Oasis Zimbabwe seeks to give impoverished children the best start in education they can, through establishing pre-schools in partnership with local churches in the high-density suburbs of Harare. These pre-schools also enable Oasis to improve the health outcomes of children. In Epworth, the most deprived community in Harare, Oasis has an ever-expanding hub that utilizes sports with youth to develop life-skills, reduce HIV and AIDS and encourage entrepreneurship. Oasis also provides practical and vocational skills training for vulnerable girls, and a safe home, with rehabilitation and training for former street girls.
Oasis Zimbabwe is responsible for a variety of projects including:
The Pre-School Project – In response to a severe lack of educational resources for orphans, the project was set up to help children whose families cannot afford pre-school services.
Based on the success of the revolutionary ‘change makers’ model, the project trains local groups allowing them to offer home-based care, first aid and psychological support in their own communities. Working with 45 pre-schools, Oasis equips parents with income generation strategies, whilst teaching them the basics of child protection, nutritional advice and medical care.
Health and Livelihoods - This programme is designed to increase economic independence amongst people in the Epworth community. The project works with young men to provide life skills and livelihoods training, as well as running sports and recreation activities. The Health and Livelihoods team has also started operating self-help groups among vulnerable women in Epworth, in the hope of cultivating a culture of savings and micro-loans to help establish and support local businesses.
Community Empowerment – This project is aimed at equipping church and community leaders to become primary agents for the transformation of their communities. By equipping leaders to address their community’s needs, the project plants the seeds for long term and sustainable transformation.
The Tanaka Project - Tanaka, meaning “we are now whole “, is a project specifically catered to girls aged 13-22 who were living and/or working on the street, or who are at high risk of ending up on the streets. Historically a shelter home for street girls, most of the young people have happily now been reunited with their families as Oasis continues to support them through their education. The majority now live with their birth families who take full responsibility for them.
Tanaka runs a year-long training course in tailoring and entrepreneurship for girls from Epworth who are at risk of turning to the streets. Oasis is currently re-registering Tanaka as a short-term transitional care home, which will deliver life skills and vocational training for girls coming off the streets, as well as providing a short-term place of safety.