MPC Nkhoma, Malawi
The remote rural areas of Malawi have very little infrastructure, so it is difficult and expensive for most NGOs to reach the many orphans and vulnerable children in need of support. But along with our local partner MPC, we developed an efficient, low-cost and replicable way to reach these children, by working with the congregations and existing frameworks of the Malawi Presbyterian Church. Through them we can engage the whole community in identifying the most isolated children and providing sustainable support.
We have partnered with MPC in Blantyre, Malawi, since 2007, and have expanded our work with them to a new rural area, where we intend to reach the 2,500 orphans who have been made vulnerable by extreme poverty and the prevalence of HIVAIDs.
How we make a difference:
- We work closely with MPC to understand the local context, to develop community-owned responses, and to share knowledge and solutions from other places in which we operate.
- Together, we improve the health of thousands of the youngest orphans and vulnerable children, through our Early Childhood Development (ECD) Centres which give them a safe place to play, learn and have a meal, while their parents and guardians can go out to work.
- We offer emotional and social support to older orphans and vulnerable children through our Children’s Corners which give them an opportunity to spend time with other young people, receive support, and have access to ‘life skills’ training which equips them to make positive choices in their lives.
- We give local community leaders the project management skills they need to manage the multiple activities taking place in their community to support the young people for the long term.
- We provide vocational training to orphans and vulnerable young people who have been unable to finish school, in order to develop their skills and increase their employability. We also teach them enterprise and money management to help them build a better future.
- We establish village savings and loans associations as part of our Village Investors Program (VIP), which enables those looking after vulnerable children to pool their small resources and make business loans to each other. This helps them to earn a sustainable living and support their children better, and for longer.
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Personal accounts from the children, young people and communities in Africa that we’ve had the privilege of working with, show extraordinary strength and human spirit.
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We are proud to be working with 27 project partners, across 217 communities, to support and empower young people for the long-term.