I am a determined girl who is hardworking and strongly willed to make it in life regardless of any obstacles that may come my way. This trait I acquired from my mother who tirelessly works for my brother, cousins and I to live a better life. My best characteristic is my perseverance. I do not believe in giving up. I push until I get where I want and I refuse to settle for less.  This determination led to me getting chosen for the Makomborero scholarship programme.

If I had known how remarkable my journey with the Makomborero team would be, I wouldn’t have been so nervous as I stepped through the Boarding House door on the 24th of January 2016.

To my amazement, nothing was as I had expected when I started my Makomborero journey. The moment I set my eyes on mum’s banana welcoming smile,all my anxiety completely disappeared. I was immediately introduced to the other students who made sure that I felt as comfortable with everything as possible. My new siblings, the Makomborero students, were completely different from what I had in mind. They have been the most encouraging, supporting brothers and sisters I could ever ask for. I have the privilege of sharing knowledge and engaging in group discussions with such intelligent people. I am 100% sure the bonds I have made in the Boarding House for the two years I will be part of Makomborero will be of great assistance in the course of my journey to make an impact and leaving a mark in my country, Zimbabwe. I feel overwhelmed with appreciation for being given this chance to be part of this enthusiastic group with a bright future.

Sometimes I am amused as I jokingly tell the lower sixths not to enter our room without knocking. I find it very hard to believe that I can now say “my room”, referring to the room that we share as upper six girls. This is a special kind of privacy I never imagined I would get. It never dawned on me that I would ever get the opportunity to use an iPad in High school and to have access to unlimited WiFi at home. I always find it funny and hard to believe when I hear myself saying “Of course I have access to the Internet! I will definitely look it up for you”. Clearly Makomborero has given me so many opportunities that even my language has changed.

Most importantly Gateway High has exposed me to so many breathtaking experiences. In lower six I had the opportunity to go on a camp and witness for the first time how beautiful Nyanga is (an area in the Eastern Highlands of Zimbabwe).   I find pleasure in helping people especially with my academic talents and I love to witness the fruits of my efforts on other students. Hence I head the Academic Service Group at Gateway where I help students with science subjects every Tuesday and Wednesday. Being part of a Servant Leadership system at Gateway I have developed a humble spirit which makes it easier for people to approach me whenever they need help with their school work. I have a passion for motivating school kids which is why I am the chair person for Scripture Union where I get to give them advice and direction.

I have a strong passion for Health Sciences,which is one the main reasons I study Biology. It is my goal to be involved in the Zimbabwean medical sector as a doctor. I desire to unite with other doctors where I will head a group of Hospitals. I want to set the standard for how doctors should offer service to the public. I want everyone in Zimbabwe to have access to the most advanced medical equipment through the hospitals I will introduce. As a way of giving back to the community, a teenager in the next 10 years should not go through the same corrupt and failing health system I experienced growing up in.

In upper six I was elected team leader (prefect) and went to another team leaders camp in Aberfole in the Honde Valley. Exhilarating activities we did included hiking, rafting, swinging on a giant swing, swimming etc. Of all the activities rafting was heavenly to me. As I was confidently paddling, heading for the waves, I was reflecting – if God could give this brilliant opportunity to a girl like me who was brought up in the ghetto, He will certainly do more.

As if this isn’t enough, the Resource Centre, our place of residency, has been a place of comfort to me. The location on its own is peaceful which is very different from the Chitungwiza suburbs I grew up in. We are blessed with an enormous yard and an orchard with almost every fruit tree in it. We also have a pool and I can proudly say now I am Belinda the swimmer. We also have ping-pong – a grand way of refreshing after a serious long time of sticking our heads in books. On top of all that, we have the adorable Cola, our dog, who is so sweet I cannot help but smile each time I look at her.