On Saturday morning, I attended a Christmas Card Sale & Coffee Morning at The Kirkrooms, Strathblane. It’s always a great event and lovely to catch up with people and have a chat. I had a selection of packs of cards for sale and, thanks to everyone who bought them, made £184.50 for Changing Lives Malawi.
These cards are taken from original paintings by my mum, Christine Cresswell, who is a very talented artist. She has generously gifted these cards to our charity so all the money from sales will go towards building the new latrine blocks. Some of the original paintings are for sale so let me know if you see something you like.
Each pack contains 8 cards of the same design, blank for your own message and they are £5 each plus £2.50 p&p. (if you purchase multiple packs then we can combine postage amounts). Perfect for sending or giving the whole pack as a gift.
My mum, Christine Cresswell, is an amazing artist. She has only been painting for a few years and finds it very relaxing as she can totally switch off whilst she is concentrating on the beautiful scenes she is painting. My mum is also a trustee of Changing Lives Malawi.
She is generously selling her paintings with all proceeds going to support our work in Malawi. We have had cards made from some of her paintings which will raise funds as all money from sales will also go to the projects we help to support. I will do a post of the paintings soon.
These cards have been packed in 8 cards of the same design. They are blank inside for your own message, with our logo being on the reverse. As well as buying to send, you could also give a pack as a gift. Each pack is £5 with p&p being £2.50. If you would like to purchase more than one pack, then please get in touch and I will work out postage rates. These cards will also be sold in a shop local to us soon which is very exciting! details to follow about that partnership soon. Thanks for your continued support everyone. firstname.lastname@example.org Thank you, Sarah x
We are really fortunate to have Christine Cresswell as one of our trustees. Christine is a talented artist and donates the proceeds of her artwork to our charity to help fund the projects we support in Malawi. I will do another separate post with a selection of paintings soon.
As well as being a talented artist, Christine is also my mum. We have had cards printed from some of her beautiful paintings. I have spent a couple of hours at mum and dad’s dining table today. Dad was tasked with counting cards, mum was counting envelopes and I was putting the two together in cellophane bags.
These cards are blank inside so are suitable for any occasion, or a pack could be given as a gift. They are a bargain at £5 per pack of 8 cards (same design) plus p& p of £2.50 per pack. (I can check postage rates for multiple purchases).
My parents also, very generously, paid for the printing of these cards, so every penny from the sale of each pack will be going towards the projects we help to support. email@example.com if you would like to order some cards.
It’s exactly one month until Christmas Day. Are you organised yet? We have a selection of gifts and cards to help you. So, grab a cuppa, make a list of everyone you still need to buy for and have a read of my blog! All money is going straight to the projects we support in Malawi. There are no admin or salary costs to take off as our charity is run by a small group of volunteers, passionate about changing the lives of the most vulnerable in rural Northern Malawi.
First of all….a link to DontSendMeACard.com. The first link I have posted takes you straight to the e-Christmas cards, the second link takes you to our platform page from where you can navigate to e-cards for all occasions as well as e-sustainable gifts where you can send an e-alternative gift which supports our projects in Malawi.
Our lovely bright A4 calendars are a great gift to send through the post – I can send to you or directly to the recipient. They have lots of photos and information on each of the projects and plenty of space to write in. Only £10 each with all money going to Malawi, plus £2 p&p. To order please email me firstname.lastname@example.org
We have more alternative gifts if you’d like an actual card to send to the recipient rather than just sending an email with a gift. There are 4 gifts to choose from and you just tick whichever gift you have chosen. £10 buys a football, £10 buys 4 fruit tree saplings, £40 buys soap for 100 vulnerable children and £20 pays for a box of books to be sent to a primary school in northern Malawi as part of our literacy programme. I can send the cards to you or directly to the recipient. email@example.com
Christine Cresswell, one of our trustees, has had cards made from her beautiful paintings to raise funds for our charity. Again, all money goes to support the projects in Malawi. These cards are blank inside for your own message and are in packs of 8 of the same picture for £5. Postage will be an extra £1 per pack. These packs make great gifts or to buy for your own use to have cards for all occasions to hand. firstname.lastname@example.org
And Christine’s original paintings have been donated to our charity, so all money goes to the projects we support in Malawi. We are very grateful, for her generosity of time and talent. They are framed and only £75 each plus £5 p&p.
These will make wonderful, original Christmas gifts or why not treat yourself knowing that the money will be helping vulnerable children in northern Malawi. email@example.com Thank you for reading and supporting our charity. Please do share this post with your friends so we can continue Changing Lives Malawi, Sarah x
I never like to think about Christmas shopping until after Halloween is over. Then we have November and December birthdays in our family…so Christmas shopping has to be squeezed in between all the birthday celebrations!
If you are struggling to find time for shopping, or you have gifts to buy for the person who has everything, or you would just like to have an alternative feel good gift that is going to be much better than a pair of socks then we can help you. If you want to help the planet as well as orphans and other very vulnerable children, then please do have a look at our Christmas fundraising gifts and get in touch to purchase. firstname.lastname@example.org
We have 2023 full colour fundraising calendars at £10 each plus £2 p&p. I can post to you or post directly to the recipient on your behalf. We also have alternative gift cards to send as Christmas gifts. £10 will buy a football for the children we help to support. £10 will buy 4 fruit tree saplings providing future food and a source of income. £20 will pay for a box of books to go to Malawi for our School Literacy Project and £40 will buy soap for 100 orphans and vulnerable children. I can send these to you or directly to the recipient.
One of our trustees, Christine Cresswell, has donated her beautiful paintings to raise funds for Malawi and also, we are selling her range of cards. All money is going to our projects. We have no admin fees or salaries as we are a small group of volunteers passionate about changing the lives of the most vulnerable in rural northern Malawi.
We are grateful for all the support we have received so far and would love it if you could consider our charity, and the projects we support, in your Christmas shopping list. email@example.com Thanks for reading and supporting, Sarah x
Sorry that this is going to be a bit disjointed tonight but there are so many things going on at the moment and I thought it would be good to have an update.
I went to Strathblane Church on Saturday for their Charity Christmas Card sale. It was lovely to see some people that I hadn’t seen for ages! I sold some calendars and lots of my mum’s lovely cards which have been made from her beautiful paintings. I also sold some alternative gifts with our new gift cards; a football and some fruit tree saplings. Altogether the charity made £258 which was fantastic.
I’d recently been to visit the Ranger Guides in Strathblane to talk about the projects in Malawi. They are holding a bake sale this Sunday and have very kindly said they will donate some of their proceeds to Changing Lives Malawi.
I’m taking part in the church service this Sunday at Balfron Church and will be showing photos and talking about Malawi. If you are local, then you are very welcome to come. It starts at 11.15am and there’s tea and coffee afterwards.
In November, I have been invited to show photos at a knitting & sewing group in Torrance. They very kindly made lots of lovely baby things that are on the way to Malawi in the container. I am looking forward to meeting them.
In Ibuluma, phase 1 of Bright Futures Secondary School is almost finished. It’s so exciting to see it all coming together. The floor is drying in the classrooms, the windows are getting finished tomorrow, the doors and roof are on and chalkboards will be made over the weekend. The teachers’ accommodation is finished, and teachers are being interviewed! Bright Futures Secondary School is really happening and will make a difference to so many vulnerable children’s lives. Thank you to all who have supported us to help the children. We still need more funds to buy more textbooks and have more desks made by the local carpenter so, if you can, please donate here https://gofund.me/44a92444
I appealed for some support for the children whose dad had sadly died at the weekend. Two people have generously committed to a monthly amount to help buy food for them. We would like to have a little bit more support for them so if anyone else could spare £5 or £10 per month then please do let me know firstname.lastname@example.org
We will hopefully have an update on our kilometre challenge tomorrow…please let me know if you have some more kilometres to add to our total.
If you’d like to buy any calendars for yourself and for Christmas gifts, they are only £10 each plus p&p. Packs of 8 cards (blank inside) are £5 each plus p&p. Alternative gifts are; 4 fruit tree saplings £10, a football £10, supporting the literacy project to send a box of books £20, soap for 100 children £50. These can be bought in any multiples and posted out to yourself or the recipient.
Thanks for reading and supporting and I’ll be back tomorrow with more photos and updates, Sarah x
There’s been no rushing around for me shopping and meeting people this advent season. I am so grateful for the care and attention I received from all the NHS staff when I was in hospital recently, but it’s going to be a while before I’ll be back to normal…whatever normal is!
Advent season is about waiting and reflecting and the third Sunday is about love. Who do we love and care about? How do people know that we love and/or care about them? Hopefully, by our actions. Also by our kind words.
How do the hundreds of orphans and vulnerable children supported by The William Stewart Foundation know they are loved and cared about? by our actions. A new football means the world to them. A blanket for two children to share to help keep them warm at night. Reusable sanitary towels, pants and soap giving a teenage girl her dignity back and enabling her to attend school all month like her male peers. There are so many ways we can show these children that they are important and cared about.
So in this season of giving, we would be so grateful for an extra football, or a blanket, or soap for the children. Can you help feed them an extra meal or provide some fruit tree saplings. By your actions they will know they are loved and not forgotten. Thank you for reading and supporting us. You can donate through our website, or by contacting us email@example.com or through the link below. Thanks for reading, Sarah x
The second Sunday in advent is traditionally about peace and waiting. I have had no choice this week. I wasn’t going to write this but I think it’s important and I would be very grateful if you would be patient with me whilst I write this.
I have been in a very large hospital since Tuesday morning. On Tuesday afternoon I had some of my right kidney removed using robotic assistance. If this operation had taken place at my usual hospital, they would have removed my whole kidney. So I am thankful for the opportunities I have had. Everyone has been so lovely and kind and I have felt precious and cared for.
I am very conscious of the differences between my opportunities here and the lack of health care opportunities in Malawi, something we need to try to work on next year.
I feel I am being ‘asked’ to write this and believe me I am double and triple checking things as I am on a lot of medication for pain relief and my concentration isn’t good. At least I’ve kept my eyes open! My care,post op, has not gone to plan. My oxygen levels have been extremely low and, I spent two days in high dependency. Yesterday was my first day since Tuesday with no additional oxygen…again the comparison isn’t lost on me that Malawi doesn’t have enough oxygen in hospitals.
So without you having to know all my aches and pains, I am here to wait and recover. To recover from the big operation I have had but also the stress of 2021 which has been huge.
Every day has been a worry about where money will come from to feed children, to sponsor them, to provide for them. I have been volunteering 7 days a week. I can’t continue at that rate. It’s not going to do me any good, therefore the charity any good, if I don’t start putting myself first. I don’t know what the new working hours will look like but, for now, I will wait with peace and listen. Of course, I couldn’t have worked so hard without my husband who is my biggest supporter.
All of this would have been hard enough but there have been people on social media trying to destroy our charity. People who have never met me. People who are happy to side with others without knowing facts or thinking about the consequences of their actions. I cannot apply for grants for our charity at the moment because the awful things that have been written. People might not like me or like what I say (and that’s ok) but every decision I make is to benefit those hundreds of orphans and vulnerable children to make lives better for them.
Of course, I should have been at home this last week sharing posts; getting children sponsored, selling paintings for Christmas or lovely cards; sharing the links for e-cards and e-gifts and generally working as hard as I can for every £1 to help make a difference in Northern Malawi. Hopefully, people do find the items via our website and please share posts if you can. Hoping I will be home in a few days although this week away, courtesy of the NHS, has been amazing. I couldn’t have asked for better care.
So instead of being busy selling, I’ll wait patiently for what’s going to happen next. It might be that you decide you want to help, it might be a magazine wants to write about our work… who knows? But I do know that 2022 is going to be a better year and we hope that you will continue to journey with us http://www.changinglivesmalawi.com thanks for reading, Sarah x
As we approach Christmas, today is the first Sunday of Advent. I’m sure, whether you are a Christian, of a different faith or none, most children and adults enjoy the celebrations at this time of year. Advent calendars filled with chocolate, decorations, sparkling lights, parties, concerts and presents and also the lovely food are some of the special things we can enjoy as well as being with people we love. Whilst there have been some restrictions recently, they are nothing compared to what people living in extreme poverty are facing every day of the year, wherever they are in the world.
The first Sunday in Advent is traditionally of HOPE like a light shining in the darkness. That is what The Foundation is for the hundreds of orphans and other vulnerable children that it supports. Hope of better things to come. Hope of food, of full tummies. Hope of clean water. Hope of education. Hope of jobs. Hope of health. Hope of better housing. Hope of fun and friends. Hope of a childhood without trauma. Hope that they will no longer be forgotten. Hope of sponsorship. Hope of clothes & shoes. ALL children deserve these things.
We are making great progress but with so many children there is never enough money. It costs £100 to feed 500 children once a week. This is their most nutritious, substantial meal of the week….some children do not eat every day and most suffer from malnutrition. We need to reach more people to help us continue to improve the dire situation that these children face. Can you share our posts or tell your friends about our charity?
Please help us to bring hope to hundreds of the most vulnerable children. If we don’t support them…..they have nobody. Together we CAN make a difference. Together we can change lives in Malawi. firstname.lastname@example.org . I am working tomorrow then I am taking the rest of the week off as I have a hospital appointment. I won’t be away for too long though as the children really do need us to help them. Thanks for reading, Sarah x
The Foundation, now with electricity, is a shining light of hope in the darkness
Just wanted to share the link to our e-cards & e-gifts. You can do your Christmas shopping and send your Christmas cards without leaving your sofa…and all for a great cause. Click on the link and have a look. Thanks, Sarah x