Copper isn’t Zambia’s only rich natural resource.

The Republic of Zambia is located in Southern Africa. Its name comes from the Zambezi river, which flows through parts of the country and also forms its southern border. Zambia has a tropical climate, high plateaus, broad plains, and river valleys.

One of the world’s fastest economically reformed countries, Zambia has much to gain. While its economy has predominantly been based on the copper industry, Zambians are seeking alternatives from the country’s other rich resources, such as agriculture, gemstone mining, and tourism.

The Challenge Today

Everything is extreme here: natural beauty, weather, and wildlife.

Zambia has essentially two seasons: a rainy season that creates abundance and a dry season that creates stress. When the dry season hits, river channels shrink to trickles, and the hot land becomes parched. This impacts not only people but wildlife.

These extreme weather conditions create hunger for all, forcing wildlife to wander for food causing crop damage and loss of potential income. There are other challenges, too, including poor farming methods and limited markets.

With a burgeoning industry thanks to natural wonders like Victoria Falls, it’s important for Zambia to keep its breathtaking forests intact and protect its wildlife. Faced with increased deforestation and poaching, key wildlife populations are decreasing rapidly.

A quarter of a million children are out of school in Zambia.

Zambia is one of the poorest countries in the world, and over a quarter of a million of the country’s school-aged children are not enrolled in school. An overwhelming 47 percent of the children who are enrolled do not complete primary school.

Meeting the Challenge

Our solutions to protecting Zambia's unique biodiversity:

Education is not only a right but it is also an essential tool to break the cycle of poverty and save Zambia’s wildlife.

Lupani landscape, located in southern Zambia, remains heavily forested, which attracts communities that rely on extractive manufacturing, like charcoal, for their livelihoods.

In 2011, through African Wildlife Foundation’s Classroom Africa initiative, AWF rehabilitated the Lupani Primary School with six new, modern classrooms, five teacher houses, latrines, solar power, and even adult literacy classes.

From a school that was once a dilapidated one-room schoolhouse with a caved-in roof, this was a significant improvement for the Lupani community. Since AWF rebuilt the school, enrollment has tripled, test scores have greatly improved, and qualified teachers are now on-site.

AWF, in collaboration with Children in the Wilderness, is implementing conservation and environmental management practices at Lupani Primary School. A brand new nursery shade house was constructed to house up to 15,000 tree seedlings at a time.

The community and Lupani students have already planted 2,600 indigenous trees at the primary school and are also receiving training in nursery management.