our journey

Our Rainbow House is an Australian and Zambian Registered Charity with focus on a community near Lusaka, Zambia.

Based in Emerald, Central Queensland, with friends throughout Australia and beyond, our charity provides the opportunity for orphans and vulnerable children to attend school, and gives them improved life chances.

Our Rainbow House was formed after our founder, Alison Ray had the pleasure of volunteering at the School of St. Jude’s, Tanzania.  After this experience, Alison went to Zambia to visit her son’s sponsored child.

This journey took Alison to an impoverished compound of 55,600 people on 5 hectares.  Approximately 7,800 of which were orphans and vulnerable children.  When Alison arrived at the compound in Zambia she had an epiphany, that this was where God meant for her to do some work.  This feeling was strong, overwhelming and could not be denied.  She knew that she had to come back when the time was right.  

Alison progressed to form a committee of a small group of friends in Emerald.  In 2012, with foundational funds, they opened the school for 51 orphans and vulnerable children.  They employed teachers, guards and cooks.  The school has progressed very well, and systems and processes have been enacted to ensure the viability of the charity and create the preferred futures for Our Rainbow House. 

The challenges of fundraising in Australia, for action in Zambia, has been a journey. The school faces the same problems as any other school – nothing is perfect.  But it is hugely rewarding to see the students who, through sadness, loss, hunger and extreme poverty, still come in the school gates, smiling and thankful to have an education!

A little of what a sponsored child enjoys at Our Rainbow House includes breakfast, lunch, school uniforms, books, health and pastoral care, all of which are kindly provided through the love and generous sponsors of Our Rainbow House.  The charity employs a project coordinator, teachers, cooks and guards to enable the operations in Zambia.

In 2016, to our delight, our first class of grade seven students all passed their national high school entrance exam.  Considering the students had completed seven years of education in only four years, this was a tremendous achievement! Since then, many of our students have gained places at local high schools, and scholarships to prestigious boarding schools, and are continuing their education.

Our Rainbow House adheres to the guidelines of the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID), which strictly accredits the charity and its actions. Rigorous policies and procedures ensure accountability, transparency and that every cent raised is spent in support of the children.

Dedication and hard work by many volunteers over the years, has seen Our Rainbow House reach its potential.  We are proud of the achievements and invite you to become involved, so that we can offer education to many more children in the area.