A Tribute to Simon Maonde

Simon Maonde 1930-2014

Canadian supporters of Twitti School send their condolences and prayers to the Maonde Family, and especially to Lydia Maonde, Arthur, Sydney, Lily and Steve, on the passing of Dear Papa Simon Maonde.   


We remember Simon Maonde as a role model to us, Shelley and Patricia, who came to Zambia over 45 years ago as young teachers to be guided and encouraged by Simon and Lydia Maonde at Namwala Secondary School.   


We feel privileged to have known this man who became over the years our friend and mentor. He was a man of dignity, vision, leadership, determination and charity.   


As evidence of a man of dignity, Simon had a noble bearing and stature. His moral strength was evident upon meeting him and he was loved and respected by all. In his early career at Namwala Secondary School, he had a great impact on the students, who continued to visit “The Big Man” in his later years to show their respect.   


Simon, along with Lydia, had a vision of the importance of education to the children of Zambia, first at Namwala Secondary School, and then at Twitti School which they founded. As he said in a letter, “We feel that the best way to aid an orphan, or any child in the community, is to give her or him the best education which will help the child in the future.”    


Simon was a leader in his community. He had an ability to motivate young people and make them want to be the best they could be. His reach as a leader stretched all the way to Canada. He wrote,“The Zambian Tradition – the elders wait in the village while the young are sent to look for food or fields and tasks to do. Patricia and Shelley, the Task of building the Twitti School is given to you to execute.”   


Simon had determination, an ability to focus on a goal, work hard and reach that goal. He set an example to everyone around him of the importance of hard work in reaching one’s goals.   


Simon exemplified the quality of charity in everything he did. Simon devoted his life to education. He spent the years after he retired providing an education to the vulnerable children of Lilayi. Because of his and Lydia’s charity, the Twitti School will continue as a legacy to the children of Lilayi for years to come.   

We will miss this great man. We feel honoured to have known him. May he rest in peace.  

The Simon A. Maonde Excellence Award

This award is given annually to the Grade 7 student with the highest total of points on the National Examinations.


Recognition includes the inscription of the student's name on a plaque at the school  and a monetary prize.  The student's school fees are paid for the following year at the school of his or her choice, up to a cap determined by the Lilayi Board of Trustees.


The first recipient of the Maonde Award was Henry Shambala in 2015.