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Written by :  Leslie Hite // Photography by : Denny Jones

I went to Grippis for the first time in 2011. I witnessed first hand the hope these people have despite their devastating circumstances. I met the men and women from the village that are determined to make a positive impact for the next generation, starting with parent involvement in improving the school and making sure students were fed. I watched the handful of women cook lunch for 300+ students, sell produce and learn to sew in order to provide for their families, and encourage their children to attend school to have a better life in the future. Enter Grassroots Heroes International.

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When I returned three years later the school looked completely different. There were now cinderblock classrooms with windows and doors but it was the same group of women who were advocates from the village for the school. Some of the teachers in the village walk over an hour one way every day to teach at the school. The children love school and they especially love to gather together and sing songs about what they have learned.

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They have made so much progress academically and are proud of their skills. The children and adults are becoming proud of their village. Through the financial investment along with the investment of time and effort of GHI supporters the villagers became empowered themselves and are now assuming a major role toward becoming self-sufficient.

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I love this organization because there is no overhead- all of the money goes directly to the sponsorship of students, the salary for the teachers and GHI worker on the ground in Zambia, and for projects to improve the village. Grippis village is very close to my heart and I am thankful for the opportunity to provide more financial support to these people who are so deserving.

If you’re interested in using your wedding to give back to Grassroots International or any other organization, you can get started here.  Or, alternatively if you have a cause you’d like us to feature, please tell us about it here.


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