This is the first issue in the year 2017! Many great things were accomplished in 2016 and we thank you all for your support and prayers. Many Malawians, especially children, have been assisted by your support. Below is a highlight of many of the ways FVM was able to minister to the needs- spirit, soul and body- of the people of Malawi.
(Pictured above: Newton Sindo and his wife, Ida, wearing shirts that say "Kukula" which means "GROWTH".)
- 500 children of ages 3-6 years have been benefiting from our Preschool feeding program. This has helped keep children in school, reduced malnutrition, and provided needed energy for the children. As a result students are better able to concentrate during school and have the energy to participate in play activities. It also helps parents and guardians to concentrate on economic activities for their households.
- Dr. Joe Mtika and his school, Norfolk Pvt. Schools, in Malawi donated 30 cartons of Mercy Meals (fortified rice) to FVM. The children in our two communities have been feeding on these foods.
- 15 volunteers were trained in child development and preschool activities for five days. This motivated these great people to render their support to the children efficiently at Community Based Child Care Centres (CBCCs). It also provided opportunity for the volunteers to interact and share experience. (Pictured below are some pictures from this training event)
- The rains started a bit later than usual this growing season. Malawi usually anticipates rains late in November but this time it started raining in late December. The big facility FVM provided is still standing though developed a crack due to heavy wind blowing.
- The erratic rains caused damage to building and property in the villages. In some areas some life has been lost. Three classroom blocks at Sunuzi Primary School and old child care building in Taulo (where FVM works) had their roof blown off by heavy winds (Pictured below). Some houses were also demolished in the communities.
- 4 Education Assistance Beneficiaries completed their college studies and are awaiting graduation with Bachelor’s Degrees. One graduated already in August.
- 120 people had their eyes screened and 4 of them from the Taulo community went through successful cataract surgery.
- FVM participated in various endeavours including advocating for safety of people with albinism in various forums. FVM distributed sun protection lotion (which is not easy to find in Malawi) to 7 people with albinism. Now people with albinism are safer than in past 24 months.
- FVM mobilized more than 20 NGOs and government sectors to bring awareness to information about school, protection of people with albinism, HIV/AIDS prevention and child protection issues in areas where FVM works.
- 2 sports tournaments were organised in Taulo and Nandolo areas which provided entertainment, as well as a platform for advocacy on important issues like HIV/AIDS, eye care, education, prevention of early pregnancies and some cultural practices that are detrimental to human safety and development.
- Dan Hayhoe and John Rule visited Malawi in October and officially handed over the kitchen that was constructed at the end of 2015 to the community of Taulo. They also had a chance to inspect maintained and rehabilitated boreholes.
- The people have planted soybean seed and cow peas (nandolo) that were distributed by FVM under the Multiplication Program. The aim of involving the beneficiaries of projects in sourcing locally generated resources for their children’s feeding in CBCCs. It is hoped that the yield with provide one third of the annual need, if all things equal with the rain fall.
- Weekly Bible study and Gospel Outreach programs were also conducted with big attendance, and radio broadcasts of the Gospel in two major local languages (Tumbuka and Chichewa) were carried out as planned in the year.
- Pastor Justin Falinya suffered a stroke in May 2016, but is doing much better now though speech is not fully back.
- A carton of calendars made by Bible Truth Publishers was received and they are distributed daily.
- Good rains so the crops will grow.
- Discussions with the Lujeri Tea Estate on building a bridge in Nandolo community would go well.
- The transition to receiving a new member on staff, Mphatso Barnet, the Finance and Administration Officer would go smoothly.
Newton Sunday Sindo