PRACTICAL ASSISTANCE FOR DISADVANTAGED CHILDREN IN MALAWI AND THEIR FAMILIES
A practical, holistic approach
ChildCare Malawi is a small UK-based charity established in 2012, which has evolved gradually from a long distance collaboration between Clare Clements in England and Joyce Maunde in Malawi. After Clare came across the story of a boy called Fedson, who is unable to walk due to untreated clubfeet, and Joyce tracked him down at his home in Zomba, we had a wheelchair made for him in the Orthopaedic Centre workshop at the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH) in Blantyre.
Having discovered that this is the only facility in the entire country making bespoke children’s wheelchairs that are robust enough to withstand the rigours of the rough local terrain, we were inspired to use Fedson’s case as a springboard to help other children with restricted mobility. There is no government funding available for this service and the cost of a wheelchair is beyond the means of most families. Although life is tough for the vast majority of Malawians living in one of the poorest countries in the world, making ends meet is even more challenging for those with disabled children.
As it soon became apparent that wheelchair repairs were also prohibitively expensive and that a sustainable solution would have to include ongoing assistance for families living from hand to mouth, we create individual support packages designed to raise aspirations and break the demoralising, repetitive cycle of abject poverty. ChildCare Malawi is fully committed to ensuring that all the children in each family have the basic essentials they need for school and their families are supplied with a small, fuel-efficient cooking stove, solar lights and a basic mobile phone. This significantly reduces their household expenses, enabling them to spend more of their hard-earned income on a healthier, more varied diet and crucial home improvements.
The distribution of nearly new children’s clothes donated in the UK, and fuel-efficient cooking stoves and solar lights purchased in Malawi to support local businesses, have developed into additional projects to benefit numerous other disadvantaged children and their families. Children in families with special needs are provided with modest child support grants to ensure that they have the essential items required for school.
ChildCare Malawi is unable to register with the Charity Commission because our annual income is less than £5,000. However, we are registered as
a Small Charity with HMRC, which entitles us to claim Gift Aid on eligible donations.
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Tuition fees and accommodation costs provided for a university student at Chancellor College for the second semester.
Tuition fees and accommodation costs provided for a university student at Chancellor College for the first semester.
Family liaison visit to re-establish contact with three families and deliver targeted support.
Family liaison visit to deliver support packages to five families, including basic provisions and baby clothes.
Family liaison visit to deliver support packages to five families, including rolls of plastic sheeting for roof repairs.
Family liaison visit to deliver support packages to five families, including clothes and solar lights.
Family liaison visit to re-establish contact with five families and deliver targeted support.
January 2020 - June 2021
Projects paused due to the impact of unusually challenging and turbulent circumstances.