13 USAPCS Alumni Commence Capstone Fellowships

The USAP Community School Class of 2023 recently celebrated its graduation in November, marking a significant milestone for the 42 students. As part of their senior year, each U6 student conducts a primary and secondary research Capstone project and writes an intensive college level research paper. The capstone project is a year-long endeavor that allows the students to apply their knowledge and skills to address real-world issues affecting their communities. Among the graduates, 13 students were selected as Capstone fellows who will embark on implementing their solutions in the communities in which they live, spanning a wide range of sectors and rural, urban and refugee camp communities all across Zimbabwe. 

Yvette and Hussein at the 2023 Capstone showcase, Vanilla Moon.

The capstone projects encompass diverse initiatives, from environmental conservation and community development to education and healthcare. As they commence their Capstone fellowship, these selected and funded students are all poised to make a lasting impact in their communities, showcasing the school’s dedication to nurturing socially responsible leaders. We are grateful to Education Matters Board member Kevin Burns for making this initiative possible.

Meet the Fellows

Melody Shoko

Research Topic: Evaluation on the inaccessibility of medical health services and medical drugs

“I am excited to work toward trying to solve the problem of delayed access to medical help. I would also like to be engaged in work that is intertwined with my passion for public health.”

Roystone Varuma

Research Topic: Risk factors of diarrheal among 0-5 year olds in Vengere Township, Rusape

“I want to reduce the incidences of diarrheal diseases in my area and also cut down the mortality rate. I hope to also learn engagement skills through interaction with various people and position my town for sustainable development rooted in the use of locally available herbs.”

Faith Zhakata

Research Topic: The effects of myopia on primary school students and parents’ contribution towards their myopic children Eye-health.

“I am really passionate about helping children like me in my community. I really understand how myopia can affect one’s self esteem and also other spheres of life.”

Mukudzei Seremani

Research Topic: Takatadzei? What did we do wrong? Accommodations provided for wheelchair users in Riverside.

“I hope to make the lives of wheelchair users better. I hope society will see wheelchair users as capable and talented. I hope that in every decision society makes they will include everyone and see every in the same way.”

Theoneste Ndahimana

Research Topic: Causes and socio-economic impacts of crop raiding in Tongogara Refugee Camp and Maronga Village.

“I need to make an impact in Maronga Village. I need to provide shields to fields and increase the yields to the villagers. With this fellowship, I’ll be able to make the impact.”

Tadiwa Chihora

Research Topic: An investigation into the causes and effects of period poverty in Ascot and Mtapa(Gweru).

“I want to help address the ‘toxic trio’ which is the main cause of period poverty. It includes: Lack of access to menstrual products due to the high cost of pads, lack of education around the topic of menstruation and the anatomy of the female body and shame, stigma and superstition around periods.”

Rejoice Mutefura

Research Topic: Analysis of energy sources and their cost in Waterfalls Community.

“I hope to achieve SDG 7 which is ensuring the access to clean and affordable energy hence development in my community.”

Kudzaishe Chaonwa

Research Topic: A study of the socioeconomic factors affecting Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) adherence for HIV-positive geriatric patients (>55 years) living in Chipinge Community.

“I want to play a pivotal role in counteracting the widespread misinformation regarding HIV/AIDS for the elderly patients in the Ndau-speaking community in Chipinge. It’s very sad how the elderly people are subject to believing in unprofessional and scientifically inaccurate information and religious/cultural/social myths which have always affected antiretroviral treatment and eventually, morbidity.”

Ntahagarwa Mupapira

Research Topic: Health needs and accessibility barriers among refugees and asylum-seekers in Tongogara Refugee Camp.

“I hope to save many lives through my project as well as build trust between patients and health facilitators.”

Munashe Nyagono

Research Topic: The health effects of pesticides on farmers in Ruyafalls Bindura.

“I hope to positively change the way that farmers use pesticides, starting from my community. By helping label the pesticide containers in native languages and simple diagrams I aim to help farmers across Zimbabwe not only in Bindura.”

Ancilla Niyirema

Research Topic: The Causes and Consequences of Child Labour in Tongogara Refugee Camp.

“I hope to see my project progressing in the community and at Tongogara Primary School. I intend to give youngsters a chance to contribute to their families and themselves in safer ways and to enable the project to be sustainable enough for people to continue being helped even when l am absent.”

Natasha Chakanakira

Research Topic: The causes and consequences of early child marriages in Chimanimani District.

I am looking forward to inspire some young people to see the downsides of early child marriages. I want to continue raising awareness until it is completely eradicated in my community.

Hillary Mabhuto

Research Topic: The problems faced by child-headed households with parents in the diaspora in Gokwe South, Ward 4

“I am looking forward to changing the social status at my previous school, St Paul’s Gokwe High school, especially the lives of the children from child-headed households. I hope that I will be able to create a healthy environment for children from child-headed households.”

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