Tennis star Roger Federer has described his four day stay in Zambia as exciting.
The 20-time Grand Slam winner Roger Federer arrived in Zambia on Sunday to check on how is his Foundation is doing.
The Roger Federer Foundation (RFF) began its work in Zambia in August 2011, aiming to provide equitable access to quality basic education to children.
Federer met children, parents and teachers to have a better idea of how the whole system is working in Eastern province.
Seven years ago, the Roger Federer Foundation launched a project aiming to support and strengthen education in Zambia.
Speaking at the Kenneth Kaunda International airport before departure to Switzerland, Federer said he enjoyed his time in Zambia describing the country as amazing.
He said he met amazing people including children, government officials and his Foundation partners.
“Visiting Zambia has been exciting and getting to see the projects was an eye opener and gave me an insight on how much work needs to be done in the education sector. It was also pleasing to see the impact that our Foundation is having and it was great to see that the work we have done has been really fruitful and the money goes down to where it belongs,” Federer said.
He said government must prioritize the development of the Early Childhood Education sector as it is important for the overall development of children.
“I enjoyed dancing with the kids and the teachers and I hope to return one day,” he said.
Federer thanked the Foundation partners Reformed Open Community Schools and People’s Action Forum Zambia for what he called a great field visit in two community schools in Lundazi.
He said the partners are doing a fantastic job and changing children’s life.
“We have been operating in Zambia together with our local partners since 2011 and by the end of 2018, we will have invested US$5.1 million in Zambia. I urge the Government to expedite the establishment of the early childhood policy framework to enable organisations operate more effectively.’ Federer added.
“it was first time in Zambia and Southern Africa, a region which holds a special place in my heart as my mother is South African. I know about Zambia because my parents have extensively travelled to the country,” Federer said.
During his stay in Zambia, Federer met President Lungu who said the country was honoured to welcome the Swiss.
President Lungu said he is confident that Federer can start a new trend for bringing more celebrities in Zambia, which would definitely give a great image to the country and more possibilities in helping unprivileged children.
The two held talks at State House before Federer presented President Lungu with an autographed racket.
On Tennis, Federer said his dream remains to play Dream in Africa for a charity match.
“I played in Morocco in 2002 in the Davis Cup but I have played anywhere south of the continent, maybe this year or next year if we see how my fitness levels are,” he said.
“In Zambia, we need more tennis courts, the game is not even known out there. We still have a long way to go. Zambia is a big country with hard to reach areas. Children need to be exposed to Tennis as the sport teaches you lifelong lessons.”