Finnish-Zambia Association had embarked on an ambitious path since the inception of the current leadership in April 2020. The focus had been to restructure the association and position it to allow for an inclusive and value addition approach to managing all its established faculties. This approach inevitably called for a mutual participation in all the projects by the board members and the community. Consequently, this had led to a marathon of both board and project meetings, totaling over twenty. The outcomes from the meetings had been clear establishment of project objectives and implementation strategy.
Furthermore, FinZam board had the opportunity to meet and present FinZam goals and objectives to the Zambian Embassy in Sweden and Finnish Embassy in Zambia. The two embassies were impressed with the new approach the association has taken and committed to cooperation on various projects. This report gives a summary status of all the projects and way forward.
Amendment of FinZam By-laws
FinZam by-laws were amended after an extraordinary meeting with the community. Clauses to be changed or omitted were agreed upon during the meeting. A final copy of the amended bylaws is available on our website.
The number of board members was increased to six, after consultation with the community during the extraordinary meeting. Each of the three departments created demanded a minimum of two board members. The departments are Sustainable Development, Tradition and Culture, and Education and Charity. However, one board member resigned due to personal reasons and commitments.
FinZam has adopted ZamCom FC and is run as a project under sports. The name of the team was changed to Zambia FC. The football team participated in TAT International tournament Cup last summer and won Fair Play Award. The football team is currently looking for more players from FinZam community. On the other hand, FinZam board is engaging the embassy in securing sponsorship for the team.
The Expo was launched and first event was scheduled for 23rd of October 2020 under the theme ‘Business opportunities and tourism in Zambia’. The objective was to invite business entities from Zambia and Finland to a one-day exhibition in Helsinki, for the main purpose of highlighting business opportunities and tourism in Zambia. Expected outcome was improved cooperation between business entities in Zambia and Finland, and possible collaboration with FinZam on certain projects of interest. However, due to COVID-19, the Expo 2020 was cancelled and plans to have a virtue exhibition is under way.
FinZam has partnered with Building Futures and Green Living Movement to cooperate on some projects in the future. The past six months FinZam has not embarked on any project but hopes to do so next year.
Zambian Independence Celebration
2020 Zambian Independence celebrations will be commemorated virtually due to COVID-19, in the effort to compliment Finnish government efforts to curb the spread of the virus. Details of the program will be availed soon.
Cultural ensemble was launched and continued to have rehearsals in preparation for future events. The first performance was during Kesäpäivät in Hämeenlinna. The ensemble plans to hold some performances during virtual independence celebrations.
FinZam Bright Zambia was launched and efforts were directed at establishing a robust selection and monitoring system in identifying the needy. To that effect, a sponsorship committee is being formulated, whose main role will be to identify and physically monitor the progress of sponsored kids.
The deafblind project was launched and FinZam is collaborating with Zambia Deafblind Association to embark on awareness campaign in the seven provinces of Zambia. The aim of awareness campaign is to sensitize Zambian populace to the presence of deafblind community and their special needs. Formulation of proposal of scope of work is underway.
FinZam held its first ever family out-door activity Kesäpäivät for two days in Hämeenlinna under Ikiliikkujat project. Activities involved horse riding, mini golf, cultural dances, solo music performances, sauna and braii. Over 30 FinZam members with families attended. During the event, 90 euro was raised towards Bright Zambia project. FinZam plans to hold such out-door activities in future.
FinZam Student Affairs has contacted the University of Zambia and the exchange students coming to Finland. However, due to COVID-19 and travel restrictions, their exchange period has been postponed until 2021. FinZam has also taken part in forming Finland-Zambia Alumni Network in cooperation with the embassy of Finland to Zambia and UNZA. FinZam has invited the interested community members to take part in the Alumni network.
FinZam board is inviting all members to participate in the launched projects. Some projects require funding, therefore, FinZam has strategically partnered with the two embassies for the purpose of sourcing for funds through potential cooperating partners, and guidance on project management. The number of fully paid up members is 18. FinZam is encouraging all members to pay membership fee of 20 euro to support the efforts of the board and other cooperating partners.
Benjamin Musuku Aura Mwiinga
FinZam Chairperson FinZam Secretary