Serving the most vulnerable      in rural Malawi

  © 2012 AID AFRICA  UK Registered Charity Number 1116336

We were invited to visit a Nursery School in Mthowa Village. 41 children were on the books, from 4 villages, taught by 5 teachers under blue-gum trees.  With no shelter from the rain, they asked if we could help with a classroom.  

So we decided to build another Community Centre instead, to serve all the people in the area as well as the school. The Chief gave us land, and we set to work….  

Bricks were located, bought and transported. Foundations were dug, walls built, metal windows manufactured, frames and doors made by local carpenters. Gradually the building took shape, but we hit a snag when the walls were up as carpenters failed to supply the large trusses for the roof in time. This delayed us by a week or two……

However, before the end of November, the Community Centre was complete—roofed, floored, plastered, pointed, painted, glazed and signwritten.

This new hub of the community now provides superb facilities for education, health checks, civic meetings

and social events - as well as a permanent home for the Nursery School.

Appropriate and safe shelter can be a major challenge for the vulnerable. Their homes are likely made of raw brick (not kiln-dried for strength) and built with mud mortar, so are weak and liable to be destroyed by the wind and torrential rain.

Margaret, and her little family lived in a house like this, cracked mud-brick, without windows, non-fitting door, and collapsing grass roof. Margaret is AIDS-affected, her husband died last year, leaving her to care for their 5 children, plus an orphan, with no income. They’re all hungry, the youngest is on our phala programme.

The house was designed, bricks bought, doors & windows ordered, foundations dug, walls built, roof joists and metal roofing fitted—and just 19 days after the bricks were delivered, the house was ready for habitation—much to the delight of Margaret and her family. She now has a sturdy, safe, secure house which should last her, and her children, for decades.

Winter Report 2018


September-November trip

COMMUNITY - Building…..

Memory’s House:  Memory is AIDS-affected and blind, deserted by her husband,

and unable to build because of her frailty.

So, we designed a little 2-roomed house

so she can be independent, but safe within her family’s land—she’s thrilled!

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Mthowa Community Centre

Houses ….

Just a few days before we left Malawi, Fanny—an elderly widow—approached us asking for a house. She claimed to be living on her niece's veranda, so despite the fact we had no resources left—all had been spent or allocated to finishing projects—we visited.

We were horrified! She was living out in the open, her sleeping mat positioned between a kitchen and toilet. And even worse, it was shared by 2 orphaned girls she cares for, aged 14 and 5 years old.  A highly vulnerable family, at the mercy of the weather and at risk of violence or sexual attack. We immediately committed to building them a safe house, which was completed before Christmas

Fanny (above) - with what was left of her old house

 Fanny (below) - her two girls, and their  sleeping mat between buildings….

Fanny’s House

Margaret’s House

Memory’s House

Fanny’s new home - safe, secure and now available for generations to come.