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Support Tiko



We welcome volunteers from all around the world to share their expertise, or to generally lend a hand whilst living in and learning about life in an active grassroots community development project. You’ll need to be self-motivated, positive, open-minded and have a sense of humour. To make the most of your stay, we ask volunteers to stay from two weeks to three months or more.

If you come as a volunteer, there are innumerable ways in which you can enrich our practices – by doing a job, by teaching us, by improving or upgrading our IT skills, and much more. For examples of volunteer opportunities and programs please click here.

We’d love to meet you! Please contact Elke directly for more info tikoeducation@gmail.com.



We are always in need of donations to support specific projects such as digging a new well or to help with our general running costs such as paying teachers and staff, building repairs, and assisting with secondary school fees for the children of the Tiko crew. Please visit our ‘Donate page’ to find out how you can support Tiko in your part of the world, as there are a number of groups of friends of Tiko. There may be one in your country that you would like to join. Here you will find ways to help us while receiving a tax deduction, or by giving us the generous UK gift tax.

Donate Now

If you come to Tiko as a tourist, you help us by paying your bill. Our prices are low, as we compete with other hotels in Katete – although they do not have our atmosphere! But what you are helping with most is in showing interest in what Tiko people have to offer, and that makes them happy.

If you sign up for our newsletter, you might find something in it of personal interest to you.
If you help us with capacity building, you will be investing in the future of many local communities.
If you send us a package through the post that contains something you don’t need anymore, you will feel better, as recycling helps both your community and ours.

Most importantly, if you help us with any of the 19 steps, you will really help us to help ourselves.

Tiko Crew

The Tiko Crew

Tiko people receive an allowance of two dollars per working day on average, which is woefully inadequate, even if they do receive help-in-kind when needed. This help includes food security (information on new agricultural methods and seeds), hunger, shelter (houses made from mud and thatched roofs need regular upkeep, so many crew members buy land and build brick houses), transport, medical and funeral help, and of course, education. Recently Tiko experienced great difficulty in paying the secondary school fees of its bursary children, due to fee hikes. This led to the establishment of the Tiko Academy.

The Zambian economy is not serving the subsistence farmers well, and even though about one-third of the 19 steps have been adopted by about one-third of our crew, the need for in-kind payment still exists. We would be very grateful for your support here. For food security, which is mainly for seeds before the rainy season starts, Tiko paid US$8000 last year; and for hunger help, also offered during the rainy season, before the next harvest, we paid US$13000. There is also the problem of people selling their harvest instead of keeping enough of it for the whole year. Also, if the farmers do not take all the right steps, their harvest is meagre. Again, by adopting the 19 steps this will change – if global warming allows it to. If all our crew were helped with the 19 steps, then instead of help-in-kind metaphorically “giving fish”, we would be “teaching them how to fish”.

Costs for one family, one Tiko Academy student or one interested villager are as follows:

  1. In the field:
    Cassava cuttings ZMK 40
    QPM ZMK 70
    Sunflower seeds ZMK 25
    Ground/peanut seeds ZMK 25
    Soya seeds ZMK 25
    Sweet potato vines ZMK 15
    Total ZMK 200
  2. Manure:
    Eco-toilet ZMK 650
    Bin to start tea manure ZMK 200
    Bag garden and seeds ZMK 30
    Organic pest control ZMK 40
    Seedlings for living fence ZMK 50
    Seeds/seedlings for nitrogen-fixing trees, Moringa ZMK 50
    Total ZMK 1020
  3. Protein:
    Pigeon kraal with parent pigeon ZMK 200
    Rabbit hutch with parent rabbits ZMK 300
    Chicken house with parents ZMK 1500
    Total ZMK 2000
  4. Saving rainwater – banana circle:
    Work and banana suckers ZMK 150
    Total 150
  5. Saving firewood, energy and money:
    Energy-saving mudstove plus axe ZMK 150
    An outside kitchen ZMK 150
    Total ZMK 450
    plus two visits per month ZMK 30, or per year ZMK 360 pp
    Total per family ZMK 4030 or US$672

Tiko is also working hard to build capacity among the crew to increase our income. With a significant increase in income, the allowances that the Tiko crew currently receive could be changed into more substantial salaries.
Distance-learning courses for interns cost about US$2000 per year. Online learning, of course is the future, but our interns have had little exposure to this so far. Tiko is fortunate to have finance for the first few computers to help with the teaching of the Tiko Academy students. Two interns attended training in the use of these devices in August 2014.


Gifts in kind

We are always short of the very simple things you might take for granted. If you are able to send us things you want to clear out like pens, kitchen equipment, bedroom supplies and education materials, they will be greatly appreciated.

We are doing as much as we can to become self-sufficient through our income generating activities and cost-savings, but unfortunately our future is still very uncertain without external support and donations.

By investing in skills training, sustainable seeds and agricultural methods now, we hope to be self-sufficient within the next 10 years. Once self-sufficient, we can develop our village outreach projects using Tiko as a model for development, helping to further improve education and health in the 53 surrounding villages and compounds.

Please help us to reach that goal!