For the last three months, Mena Lamell (14) from Ockbrook School in Derby, has been fundraising for Our Moon to fulfil the volunteering commitment of her Duke of Edinburgh bronze award. She has raised a total of £374.57 for Our Moon in three months (including some time in lockdown). She has baked cakes, packed bags in Morrisons, organised a Zambian accessories day and done an eight-hour sponsored silence at school. 

We are really grateful to her for tackling each task with so much enthusiasm and good nature. She has managed to spread the word about Our Moon and hopes to visit our project in Zambia to gain first-hand experience.

She says, “I’ve heard stories from Helen about Our Moon, the people and wildlife, but what interested me the most was the differences between my culture and theirs. I spoke to Natasha, who is around my age and lives in Zambia, a while ago, and we compared our lifestyles. I was shocked to hear how she had to do so many chores that even the average adult in England would struggle to complete, on top of her school work. When I needed to complete the volunteering section in DofE, I thought that it was a perfect opportunity to fundraise for Our Moon and help improve people’s lives in Zambia.’

I had a lot of fun joining in with one of the students’ online lessons. It was really good to meet them. It brought everything into sharp focus. Even though their lesson was good, they have to put up with poor internet. But they do so with good humour. 

My favourite part about fundraising for Our Moon was when I was packing bags in Morrisons because I could immediately receive donations and I knew that with each coin in the collection box, more people would be helped. I found that it was very motivating when I lifted my box every fifteen minutes or so and it was getting heavier each time. I thought that the end result was extremely rewarding, too.

One day, I hope I will be able to visit Our Moon, meet the students and see for myself the beautiful country. In the future, I would like to be a vet, so I would love to visit some of the areas of the country where there is amazing wildlife.

I would urge anyone else who wants to do some volunteering to consider fundraising for Our Moon. You will be given lots of support and the funds will really be appreciated. The money I raised will go towards books for the students.”

Mena has been amazing. But you could be too. If you or one of your children are interested in helping out, please contact Helen at

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