Early in the morning at 5 a.m., life in the small villages around the imposing Mount Mulanje in Malawi has long since awakened. As soon as the sun rises on the horizon, the smallholders rush to their fields, often without breakfast, just a little corn porridge in their stomachs. In a few hours the vertical sun will burn down unmercifully on our heads. Men and women dig deep furrows in the rocky soil to absorb the expected rain and water the seedlings.
Today Mai Jana doesn’t run into the fields with the other women. She has put on her best clothes and is waiting for us in front of her hut. She sewed bags from the Likuni Phala sacks that are delivered to the 4 primary schools each month. Likuni Phala is a flour made from corn, soybeans, sugar, salt and vitamins. Some mothers from the villages left after dark to stack the firewood and load the energy-saving stoves. Above that, porridge simmers in the big pots, which has to be stirred constantly so that it doesn’t burn too much. Over 4,500 children can eat their fill under small shelters before class. That makes learning easier.
Mai Jana sews school bags from the fabric of the sacks. Filled with a notebook and pen, the first graders are as happy as we are about the rather flimsy school cones. With the modest salary for sewing, Jana can pay part of the education for her grandchildren.
This is just a small example of the commitment of Mlango e.V. in Malawi. The donations are not only used to pay for the Likuni Phala. Wells are being built at the schools, there is water for cooking and for washing hands. The school gardens are irrigated, in which the young students and their agriculture teachers themselves plant vegetables and peanuts, fruit and trees for firewood, hedges to prevent erosion and sweet potatoes. Even at school they are familiarized with “survival training”: No AIDS or other infectious diseases such as malaria, just don’t get pregnant much too early, protect nature in your immediate vicinity.
With your donations, Mlango brings hope and great gratitude to the villages. Hundreds of people sing and dance when we Mlangos visit their schools – often already on the last kilometer of our journey. Of course, a football game is also organized during the ceremonial handover of the gifts (jerseys and balls), and every time a white mlango touches the ball, they applaud and celebrate, no matter how awkward it may be.
Mlango is growing and adding more schools in the face of hunger in the region. And the village communities are happy. Thank you for your support, you are part of the success and continued success in the face of the challenge. Please stay loyal to us.
Your Mlango team from Malawi