Mid-Norfolk musician Anna Mudeka set to return to Zimbabwe to help orphans

A Zimbabwean musician who lives near Dereham is to return to her home country later this month to help aids orphans and disadvantaged children.

Anna Mudeka, 35, who has been living in England for 17 years, and is currently living in Southburgh, will be joined by 11 people from Norfolk on her trip, on March 24.

Ms Mudeka has been raising money for Zimbabwean children for seven years; donating books, computers and musical instruments and she set up a charity, The Mudeka Foundation, last year.

It supports 23 orphans and three schools in Ms Mudeka's home district, Rugare.

Ms Mudeka, whose last trip to Zimbabwe was in 2001, said: 'I was very lucky that I had a happy childhood. The problems have been happening in Zimbabwe in the last 15 years.

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'When I went back to my old school I saw it was badly run down and children do not have opportunities to get an education.

'Many children there have so much on their shoulders. There are 10 year olds having to look after their four-year-old siblings because both of their parents have died of aids.

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'These children just want to be educated so they can get out of the terrible situations they are in.

'My charity is doing just a little bit to help the situation but we can make a difference. I hope after this trip we will make more regular journeys out there.'

There have been various community fund-raising projects in Norfolk for the charity, including the Southburgh World Musical Festival and a Love Zimbabwe Week, which was held at Barnham Broom Primary School last week.

The week saw children making bags to fill with educational materials for the Zimbabwean children, learning more about the country and dressing up in African clothing. It raised �225.

Ms Mudeka visited the school during the week and her five-year-old daughter, Evie, is a pupil there.

Elisabeth Louis is a part-time teacher at Barnham Broom primary School and a trustee of The Mudeka Foundation.

She will be making the trip to Zimbabwe with her husband, Steve and daughter Kareema, 15, a pupil of Wymondham High School, along with other trustees of the charity with their families.

Mrs Louis said: 'As school we have done quite a bit to help Anna's fund-raising over the years and the Love Zimbabwe Week was fantastic.

'We are really looking forward to the trip and I'm sure it will be a very emotional and life-changing experience for all of us.'

Other trustees come from Wymondham, Hingham, Wicklewood and Southburgh.

To find out more about The Mudeka Foundation or to donate items for the visit contact Ms Mudeka on 01362 822194, or email info@annamudeka.co.uk

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