The Day Before School Starts

Sarah’s blog 6/11/22

It’s been a very busy weekend! Levison had the local dignitaries visit Bright Futures Secondary School on Friday prior to opening. The teachers arrived on Friday afternoon and have been settling in. You can read the full story from Friday here: VIP Visitors to Bright Futures Secondary School – Changing Lives Malawi

Boxes of supplies that we sent were opened yesterday containing: blankets, soap, toothbrushes & toothpaste, towels, pads of paper, calculators, dictionaries, filled pencil cases and bags. There is some preloved school uniform too, although not enough. We get lots of donations of primary school uniform but not high school ones. So, if anyone has preloved secondary school uniform they no longer require then please do email me. Also, school shoes for teen boys and girls are needed too. email

Today, the teachers have met to discuss the timetable and make plans before the children arrive tomorrow. It may take a few days for news to reach absolutely everyone that the school has opened so, hopefully, most children will turn up tomorrow or Tuesday. Also, it’s a difficult situation because so many teenagers are coming every day to ask for a place at Bright Futures Secondary School. Everyone is desperate for an education and a way to a brighter future.

Unfortunately, Levison is having to turn most of them away. As we are a small organisation, and building a school is a huge undertaking, we are having to build the school in phases. We are also keeping class sizes smaller than some schools, so that children have a better chance at a good education and to achieve. Eventually, we hope to have two classes in each of the four years of secondary school, with 45 children as the maximum in each class. However, this year we will have one class of S1, one class of S2 and a smaller class of S3 students, giving them all plenty of attention from the teaching staff.

Thank you so very much to all of you who have helped to fund the building of phase 1 of Bright Futures Secondary School. We really could not have achieved what we have without you. You will see from the video that the staff accommodation is nearest, and the school is in the far left as it pans round. I keep saying it’s all about teamwork and each of us have a part to play in the team that is supporting these orphans and other vulnerable children. Thank you.

If anyone would still like to contribute, we still need money for desks for the children Thank you all, Sarah x

Just some of the resources we sent to support the children’s learning

The Foundation with the new staff accommodation front right and Bright Futures Secondary School far left.

Walking, cycling, running or scooting?

Sarah’s blog 9/8/22

We still have a very long way to go on the challenge to travel the same distance the boxes go on one of the shipping routes. It’s over 13,000km from central Scotland to The Foundation in rural Northern Malawi. We are raising funds for a much needed secondary school.

Currently there are not enough places in the nearest secondary schools and they are too far away to walk to so young people have to board. Young people don’t get to go to secondary school unless they’ve passed their primary school leavers exams and they don’t get to go to secondary school unless they can pay the fees. Because there are not enough places, if you don’t get picked for a place at secondary school, despite passing your exams and having the fees, then unfortunately you don’t get to attend secondary school which is heart breaking for the children who are trying their best to achieve against the odds. That is what happened to 11 of our sponsored children.

We need to build this school to ensure that education is available to all young people. They shouldn’t miss out just because of where they were born and family circumstances. The children are desperate for an education as they know that this is their way out of poverty and a way to a brighter future.

We need your help. We know this is a huge challenge but we can do it as part of a team. We need more people to join in by donating your kilometres. Whether you are walking the dog, doing the shopping, out for a run….whatever you are doing…you can donate your kilometres to us towards our total journey. Here is the form to join in or you can email me .

Unfortunately, we cannot wave a magic wand and the school will appear. It is taking a lot of hard work and requires a lot of money. Costs are rising in Malawi and the currency has been devalued so things aren’t as cheap as you might think. Each classroom is costing approximately £7,000 and we are hoping to start with a block of 4 classrooms and a latrine block. Then build more year on year including a science lab, IT room and teachers accommodation. We are committed to the 500+ children who are supported by The Foundation and we want the best for them. Please help us?

If you know someone who might donate to help build the school then please do tell them. We have been very lucky to have had a few generous donations already. If anyone donates £500 or more then they can name a classroom. We need lots of small donations too! So can you give a few £££ today?

Bright Futures Secondary School is for all children to have a brighter future. They need a team to help them achieve this. Can you be part of the team to help build the school? Whether you can give us £5 or £50 or more….please give what you can and share our posts. The more people who can give then the quicker the children and young people can go to secondary school in their village.

A father and son team joined the kilometre challenge yesterday. They each did 4km, one walking and one scooting. I’m not sure that the dog’s kilometres should be counted…I wonder how many she did? Thanks for adding your kilometres to our total! To show your support for them and other team members doing our challenge you can give here

one boy and his dog

Jackie had done another great cycle at the weekend 19km….well done! She also told me that 20.17% of the journey has been completed now – 2,331.755km in the UK and 320km in Malawi = 2,651.755km. That’s brilliant but we need more people joining in and donating their kilometres and others donating money to show your support for the team! Where do you live? Can we get kilometres from all around the world? Join in an tell us where your kilometres are from! Thanks for reading and supporting, Sarah x

Well done Jackie!

31 Days in May – Sarah’s Challenge – Day 13

Sarah’s blog 13/5/22

12.15pm Pot of soup made! 15km on exercise bike done! I’m doing ok but finding it quite hard to concentrate on other things apart from this challenge today. I’ve almost completed two weeks and I’m really pleased that I’ve had the willpower to do this challenge….I just need to keep going and need your help.

The thought that the hundreds of malnourished children supported by The Foundation don’t have the choices I have is keeping me going and focused on my challenge. They don’t have the luxury of choosing which vegetables they will be eating and how they will be cooking them. They might go a whole day without eating at all. Things are improving for them but there is still a long way to go.

Having a school in their village will make a huge difference. It will bring employment as well as education for all. It will mean that young people don’t need to board at school and can stay at home and help their families with chores. All children deserve an education. All children deserve enough to eat. All children deserve to have the opportunities to be the best they can be. Please support my challenge to build a school for them.

I thought I’d also show you a photo of some beautiful knitting for babies that we received recently. These little jackets will be so appreciated by new mothers for their babies. We are very grateful for all the donations and support we receive to help us continue Changing Lives Malawi. Thanks for reading, Sarah x

beautiful knitting for babies in Malawi that we received recently

two lots of tasty soup I made this week – glad of a different way to eat vegetables

15km done today

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