What we aim for
Cross Over aims to help vulnerable children in Zimbabwe to live and work towards a hopeful future by providing a holistic quality education within a strong nurturing environment.
The immediate aim for our students is to restore their self-confidence, establish sound academic foundations and then to help them either re-enter the formal schooling system or into an internship with a local business. Our long-term goal is to develop our students to become reliable and productive members of their families, communities and workplaces.
What we believe for our students
We believe that this goal can be reached by developing young people of integrity and sound character. Our approach to teaching is holistic. We look at every aspect of a student’s life: spirit, heart, head and hands. In Cross Over study groups, faith, values and character matter as much as academics. It is not enough to teach our students how to read and write. We believe we must also equip them for a productive and effective life.
How we are organized
Cross Over study groups are small, no more than 15 students, and each group is led by a mentor. The small group size enables us to closely monitor all aspects of a student’s life: health, nutrition, their home situation, their spiritual and emotional health and their academic progress. All groups follow the same learning approach, based on a unique curriculum designed to consistently incorporate character, thinking skills and practical skills development into every area of study.
Each Cross Over group falls under the authority of a local church, but also makes use of a network of volunteers with specific expertise. Where several Cross Over groups meet under one church we try to establish a common venue for all groups to access educational resources and expertise to maximise their use within the community. We work extensively into the community to build relationships with students' families with a view to positively impacting the home environments in areas of health, nutrition and relationships.
We aim to develop our curriculum and all its supporting resources into a 'kit' form that contains 'everything we need' for a year of learning at a specific level for 12 students. We aim to make as much of this as possible freely available to other organisations working with vulnerable communities by posting material on our website.