The month of October was another busy time mainly due to the construction work of a small kitchen building at the child care centre in Taulo area. The old kitchen was severely hit by last season heavy rains such that it was nearly demolished. The other activities were gospel outreach, exciting Sports tournament, and Preschool and feeding programmes.
It has been quite dangerous to use the old kitchen which was partly damaged by the heavy rains that hit Malawi and the area in January and February, 2015. It was going to be quite challenging for the local community members to continue preparing food for their children at the child care centre without a kitchen. Therefore, it was very pertinent to have such a facility at the nursery school that FVM has been supporting since late 2009. There are about 400 children benefiting from the programme.
On our kitchen pre-construction meeting with the community leaders in September, 2015, community members pledged their full involvement in the cause of constructing the facility but the obvious challenges would be for them to mould bricks because it was not too late before the rains started. Therefore, this meant FVM needed to assist in buying and transporting bricks from some considerable distance to the place.
Community members have been so supportive in providing sand and labour in the project. The wall is fully erected and timber traces have been fixed on top. It is hoped that the roof will be through within the next five working days. This is a success story especially looking at speed and workmanship involved so far.
Preschool and feeding programme: 688 children (252 in Taulo and 338 in Nandolo) are benefiting from this very important programme as offered education and nutritious food five days in a week. The six volunteers are very committed to the work.
There have been several outreach programmes together with the weekly Bible Study in Taulo. The responses have been quite encouraging. Weekly Bible Study continues with Pastor Justin Falinya. Three public evangelistic rallies have been held in three villages – Lisimba, Kalumeya and Namboya.
Weekly Radio broadcasts of the gospel continue in local languages of Chichewa and Tumbuka on Trans World Radio (TWR).
Save The Children has been a partner in development in the earlier FVM is carrying out its work. The children below enjoy playing banjo (locally made guitar)
- The high level of participation of the community members assures ownership and sustainability of developments in the area
- The timely completion of the wall building of the kitchen as planned
- The continued feeding and preschool programmes without interruption
- Spiritual Care programmes are going on very well with very encouraging feedback from radio broadcast listeners
- Unswerving commitment by the volunteers has a focal point of the success story of FVM’s work in the two communities.
- Scarcity of building some materials have been derailing the speed of the construction work
- Unstable prices of materials in the market have been posing problems in material procurement
- The looming hunger causes anxiety in the people because of uncertainty of their survival
- Poor performance of the local currency makes it difficult to control the budget
- The prediction by the Malawi Government Meteorological and Climate Change Department that there will be a repeat of the last season’s heavy rains causes more uncertainty
- The coming in of World Vision International (WVI) in Taulo area will help to elevate the welfare of the people. Collaboration has already been started with WVI on making sure the people are served even better as projects are assessed to avoid duplication and unnecessary gaps.
The construction of the kitchen has been a major activity in the last half of October, 2015. Some materials, like timber, were not readily available in the market and the prices of many construction materials have not been uniform and stable.
What lies ahead
- Completion of the kitchen construction
- Eye Screening activities
Good rains in the 2015/16 growing season