Mainza Mweeba was born in Sinde Village, Southern Province, Zambia, into a family of five children. His parents are subsistence farmers – the main form of livelihood in this region. Education is often not prioritised in this area, with few parents encouraging their children to attend school and get an education.
Noticing that few people in his village were well-educated or driven to make a change in their community, and without many people around to aspire to, Mainza decided early on that he was going to fill that gap and become somebody that other young people in his community could look to for inspiration.
Beginning his journey with CITW in 2015, Mainza was accepted to study Mechatronics at the Copperbelt University. Excelling in his internal, external, and practical examinations, Mainza earned himself a place in the limited course to do engineering. Field trips further inspired him to work harder and realise his dream of becoming the first engineer from Sinde Village.
A significant accomplishment has been Mainza’s construction of a lathe machine – used to cut and shape metals. This project has given him the confidence to be able to tackle various challenges that will arise in his line of work in the future.
Mainza used university holidays to tutor students from his previous school in maths and science, as a way of giving back to the community and inspiring children to do well. He is currently about to finish his degree and is looking forward to all the opportunities that lie ahead.
Mainza’s biggest aspiration is to one day have an automotive company that “deals with networking and software development for automation of different industrial processes.”
Mainza states that “In all these years, it would not have been easy without the help of my sponsors, through the Children in the Wilderness scholarship programme. I am so grateful to them that they have helped in realising my dream, to become the student engineer that I am today”.
We look forward to providing ongoing updates on Mainza’s journey and are so proud of how far he has come.
Report by Cynthia Ndiweni and Sarah Adams, CITW Zambezi