Tom’s Trek 2018

Without your generous sponsorship many thousands of people could not survive in a Zimbabwe with a new leader but still ravaged by decades of corruption, famine and extreme poverty.

Same bus, different driver

“Surely things must be better now Mugabe has gone.”

“The new President has made so many positive changes.”

“I’m so pleased the situation in Zimbabwe has improved.”

Just a selection of snippets from conversations I have had since President Mugabe resigned. I don’t blame people for thinking the situation in Zimbabwe must have improved. After all, the tyrant has gone.

The reality is that it will take years to undo the damage. For the poorest of the poor in Zimbabwe, the situation remains desperate. Rising costs and shortage of cash exacerbate an already perilous situation.

The new President is saying all the right things but talk is easy. No western investment will be forthcoming until after the elections. The slow road to recovery will begin if and when Zimbabwe can demonstrate that free and fair elections have taken place.

In the meantime, it is business as usual for ZANE. The list of people in desperate situations continues to grow; the demand on ZANE is greater than ever. ZANE continues to provide essential aid, comfort and hope to thousands living in poverty.

We walk to help the poorest of the poor and for those who would otherwise be forgotten.

We can only do this with the generous support of people like you. And so we walk again. We will be walking from Bournemouth to Oxford to raise funds for those so much less fortunate than us.

Tom Benyon OBE


  1. sheila mcnamara

    Dear Tom,

    I notice you were an English teacher in one of your incarnations, and I am therefore writing to ask you to teach the staff at your HQ the proper use of English. I plead guilty to being a pedant, but I have just made a donation via your telephone number and the polite (I presume young( lady who took the call told me she “thanked yourself for the donation”

    I think today’s improperly educated youngsters believe this is a polite way to speak. I know this is a losing. battle, but it would be one small victory if you gently explained to those in your charge that this is incorrect, and that the use of “you” and “me” is not only acceptable, it is actually correct.

    This “yourself and myself” way of speaking is driving me nuts…. But if I am nuts, so be it!

    Best wishes and success in your wonderful work in Zimbabwe
    Sheila McNamara

  2. Tom Benyon

    Dear Sheila (If I might)

    I am sorry that you were dealt with ungramatically by our agency answering service.

    There is little I can do about it because they are in Swindon and I am in Oxford and I think we are both stuck with it! Sorry!

    My hates are “no worries”, “sort of”, “I mean” and “I know” and “have a nice day” to which the only answer can be “No, I have made other plans!”

    Then how about “take care” to which I always reply: “no, please take a risk!”

    Many thanks for your generosity and your kind support for ZANE

    Best wishes

    Take care!


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