Today, Stuart and I started packing boxes ready for the next container going to Malawi. We’ve had these amazing kids football strips from Riverside Football Club in Stirling. They were donated to Replay Sport Scotland who passed it to us for use by the vulnerable young people we help to support in rural northern Malawi.
Replay Sport Scotland have already donated sports clothes to our charity which are currently on their way to Malawi. We look forward to seeing photos of those clothes and also the Riverside Football Club kits when they arrive in Malawi.
Thank you Riverside Football Club and thank you Replay Sport Scotland. These donations will make a big difference to the young people who love playing team sports. Thanks, Sarah x
Thank you so much to all the people who have donated via Wear a Sports Shirt Day
Sarah’s blog 1/8/23
Julian of ‘Wear A Sports Shirt Day’ spends every weekend travelling round England to collect preloved sports wear from football clubs and other sports clubs. He donates these to charities like ours that will benefit young people who don’t have matching football strips. Julian also collects items like toys and bikes that he gifts to people in need in the UK.
He has been supporting us regularly by sending a couple of boxes out on each container for Levison to give the orphans when they are playing team sports. Julian also supports other organisations in Malawi, as well as other countries, so his hard work and dedication is making a big impact to a huge amount of people. So thank you so much Julian for everything you do.
Also there are a few clubs to thank; Borden Village FC, Poole Borough FC, and Swale Ladies FC. We are very grateful that you donated your preloved kit.
Also thank you very much to Neale Gorman for the polo shirts from Monks Orchard Primary School.
Apologies that this has been a bit of a mixture of photos….I will post each club/organisation individually too…. we are just delighted to have the support of so many people. Hope you enjoy the photos of lots of smiling happy faces wearing their new kit. Thanks again, Sarah x
We had been offered football strips by a club in northern England who had unfortunately had to close. The next problem was how to get the kit to us in central Scotland. Various conversations happened and arrangements were made. A man travelling north for work kindly agreed to bring the kit to meet us at the motorway services at Stirling. Another volunteer who works a few minutes from there agreed to collect the kit and bring it to us. We are so grateful for the kit and the help received.
Thanks to the kindness and thoughtfulness of several people, the kit will be on it’s way to Malawi on the next container. Levison will be able to share it with local clubs as well as keeping some for the young people whom The Foundation supports.
To those involved with Wearhead United FC, we are sorry that your club has closed. Thank you though for passing on all these kits to us to help support grassroots football in rural northern Malawi. We will get photos of the new recipients who will be delighted to receive these kits. Thanks for reading, Sarah x
Have a look at what the children have been doing today!
Sarah’s blog 11/06/23
It’s been another busy day at the Foundation. The Feeding Programme was on today so hundreds of hungry vulnerable children flock to the Foundation to receive their one nutritious, substantial meal of the week. Some children walk up to 20km to receive this food as no big charities are feeding children in primary schools in this area. All are hungry. All are malnourished. All need our help.
Children know that the Foundation is their safe place. A place to have fun and be with their friends. In addition to being fed, children have access to the library and can choose books to read. Some children have been learning about the computers too. Others have been weeding the flowerbeds and some have been playing with building blocks.
Team sports are always high on the agenda. Football and netball matches were played too. Children of all ages can forget about their problems for a while at The Foundation and enjoy themselves as they should. The netball posts were a gift from Community Sports Leaders Africa and we are very thankful for this generous donation. We have plenty of rugby balls on the way in the container but we the children always need footballs and netballs. So if you’d like to make a donation for us to buy a ball on your behalf or to help donate towards the cost of feeding 500 children please email me: email@example.com
I hope you enjoy the photos and video from today. Thank you for your continued support, Sarah x
We are grateful to receive more sports kit to send to Malawi for teams that do not have matching kit.
Sarah’s blog 31/3/23
We have been very fortunate to have had several individuals and organisations donating sports kit and equipment to us for use by the vulnerable young people we support in rural northern Malawi.
Strathendrick Rugby Club and Merchiston Castle School have very kindly donated kit, boots and rugby balls and there will be some other donations coming soon from other supporters.
Via Julian Chenery from ‘Wear a Sports Shirt Day’ there has been hockey kit from Bromley & Beckenham Hockey Club, and numerous football kits as well as Christmas Jumpers and Christmas hats. Julian spends nearly every weekend collecting preloved kits from clubs to pass on to a variety of charities. Sports kits then are able to be reused by teams who wouldn’t otherwise have been able to afford to buy matching kit.
Julian messaged me the other day to say that he has sent football kits kindly donated by Swale Ladies Football Club and Borden Village Football Club which made it in time to be loaded onto the Bananabox Trust container which is now on its way to Malawi. We will, of course, show photos when those arrive.
Julian also met with Mark Meekings who runs ‘Kitz4Kidz’ who have donated kit they have collected for use in Malawi. Thanks to Julian and Mark and to those who donated kit – photos to follow when the kit arrives in Malawi. Thanks also to the volunteers at Bananabox Trust for their hard work ensuring everything is recorded and packed safely into the containers.
During the two week Easter holidays, we are facilitating the running of an Easter Study School for the 66 p8 students at Chambo Primary School and the students at Bright Futures Secondary School. Lessons will run Monday – Thursday during the first week and Tuesday – Friday the second week. On Good Friday and Easter Monday, the young people will be playing organised team sports.
For 10 days during the holidays all these students will receive a substantial, nutritious cooked lunch. This will probably be their only proper meal of the day. This meal might be the only food that they eat that day. We would be very grateful for help towards providing this food. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for bank details or you can text FEEDING to 70480. Every £5 or £10 donated will make a huge difference to these vulnerable students and help them concentrate whilst they study. Thank you, Sarah x
The students at Bright Futures Secondary School were invited to go to Chisenga Secondary School yesterday to play football and netball against Chisenga.
I don’t think we can quite comprehend the level of excitement and how much this trip meant to the students at Bright Futures Secondary School. Levison had sent me photos and videos last night but phoned me this morning to give me details and he was so happy that it had all gone well. All the students, and teachers, had enjoyed the afternoon enormously.
Most of the students at Bright Futures Secondary School have never been in a car before. So when they found out that they were going to Chisenga in taxis they were amazed. Levison said one student asked “Sir, you mean we have to pay for this journey?” so Levison was able to say “No, this is part of your education at Bright Futures Secondary School.”
Levison said that the students were a real credit to Bright Futures Secondary School, encouraging each other and singing lots of songs together. They cooperated well with each other and were very proud to be representing their school.
So from new experiences like being in a vehicle for the first time, having nice football and netball strips, trainers and football boots, and representing their school, the students know that they are valued. They know people care about them. They know that people are investing in them and their future. Levison said they are motivated to work hard in school. The spectators and staff at Chisenga School were surprised by the kits that the Bright Futures students were wearing and the fact that Levison took a new football to be used.
Unfortunately, the netball results didn’t go in Bright Futures favour; the first team’s results were 1 – 9 and the second team’s results were 6 – 10 but they tried their best and that’s all anyone can ask of them and we are proud of them.
Bright Futures football first team won their match 2 – 1 and the second team’s match ended in a draw 0 – 0. Very well done everyone we are proud of you!
So we want to thank everyone who has made yesterday a hugely successful trip. Thank you for the donation towards the taxis. Thank you to those who have donated trainers and football boots and sports kits. We couldn’t support the children without your help. Levison was very keen for me to pass on his thanks to everyone who helped make yesterday “I would really like to thank the donors…it was the best day for our school so far”.
We still need to raise a bit more money to cover the cost of the taxis yesterday, so if anyone would like to donate then we would be very grateful email@example.com Levison said they would have given the students from Bright Futures a special meal if they could have afforded that. Instead, each student today has been given a new pen and pencil.
One of the students at Bright Futures Secondary School, Daniel, speaking on behalf of the students said “I want to thank you about the support you gave yesterday. I’m very glad to say that we won the game yesterday. We are more than happy because we have put our school on the map. Thank you supporters. The other school was challenging us, saying that Bright Futures is just a baby school that opened some few months ago which they thought it was obvious for us to fail the game. So winning the game was a relief to put the school on the flag of the winners.”
“I, as the headteacher, speaking on behalf of my colleagues, would like to say thank you for the support that we received yesterday. We are very glad to tell you that our first team won the football. We managed to beat one of our neighbouring schools who thought that they would win because we are only a small school. Winning yesterday made our school proud. It gave us confidence that we are strong as an institution. It has put Bright Futures Secondary School on the map. We have made history at yesterday’s game not only were there students there from Chisenga, but also people from surrounding communities came and watched the game. So, when they are leaving to go to their various places, they carried news that Bright Futures Secondary School is one of the strongest school with a strong team. This has given us confidence and has encouraged the students and the teachers. Our teams looked good in their jerseys and boots. Thank you so much. Please continue supporting us.” Miss Mtambo, Headteacher.
Bright Futures Secondary School Footballers are wearing red/black – Craigshill Thistle Football Club and also green – Edinburgh South Football Club. Bright Futures Secondary School Netball teams are wearing white/navy – Bromley & Beckenham Hockey Club and also yellow/black – Fakenham Town Football Club. Thank you to all these clubs who have donated kit and also to Paul Goodwin, Paul Kelly, Julian Chenery and ‘Wear a Sports Shirt Day’ and, of course, The Bananabox Trust for their help with getting donations to Malawi.
Thank you for reading and supporting the students of Bright Futures Secondary School. I hope you enjoy the photos and videos, Sarah x
The students at Bright Futures Secondary School have had an invitation from Chisenga Secondary School to play football and netball against them. Bright Futures teams will go to Chisenga Secondary this Sunday and, at a future date, the Chisenga School teams will play at Bright Futures Secondary School.
The Bright Futures students are really excited to be playing against another school at netball and football. It will be so good for them to be having fun with their friends playing team sports. Everyone is looking forward to Sunday.
We need some help please. It would be far too tiring if the students were to spend hours walking there, playing their matches and then walking back…so they will need to go in taxis to Chisenga School. We have already had one donation towards this but need approximately another £150. So if any of our supporters love football or netball or both, or just want the teenagers at Bright Futures Secondary School to be able to represent their new school playing sport, we would be so grateful for any donations towards the cost of taxi fares. firstname.lastname@example.org There will, of course, be lots of photos from the matches on Sunday.
Thank you so much for helping us to support these vulnerable teenagers, Sarah x
Hope everyone had a lovely Christmas. I just wanted to post a few videos celebrating how wonderful we think the children in Ibuluma are. There are hundreds of them who are malnourished and have suffered varying amounts of trauma but, despite all that they are doing well. They now know that people care about them.
If you have helped us then we thank you. Here are ways you can support us to continue Changing Lives Malawi.
There is so much going on both in Malawi and here, so I thought I would do a quick update.
Our charity accounts and trustees’ report have been completed and filed with OSCR. We now have three years of completed accounts and our charity is progressing well, thanks to all the support we have received. More grants can be applied for as many organisations require three years accounts from applicants.
I am continuing to try to raise funds to support the projects; education and feeding the orphans continue to be our priorities; and we must reach more people to try to get more awareness and more support to ensure that children are fed and that phase 2 of Bright Futures Secondary School can be built next year. If you would like to contribute to the school project the link is here https://gofund.me/44a92444 or you can email email@example.com Why not make a monthly donation to support the feeding of 500+ orphans? Or if you are in a position to gift £500 or more then you can have your name, a name or your choice or your business name above a classroom door or one of the other new buildings.
Fundraising calendars – I still have some available. These make great Christmas gifts. These are only £10 plus £2 p&p. As one of our trustees paid for these to be printed, all of the £10 will go towards Bright Futures Secondary School. We have alternative gift cards available, paintings and packs of cards by Christine Cresswell one of our trustees who has donated her time and talents to raise funds for our charity. Have a look and see what you can buy for Christmas without leaving the house! The link to all the fundraising items is in a previous blog post here Christmas Cards & Gifts – Changing Lives Malawi
The container is due in Ekwendeni any day now. Levison is just waiting for confirmation then he will be travelling south to collect the boxes and chairs that we sent. Thank you to everyone who donated items to be sent. There will be great excitement when the chairs and the boxes arrive.
Government schools will close for the Christmas holidays on 16th December. Because Bright Futures Secondary School was a bit late opening, due to having to raise funds as we go, the teachers have kindly suggested that the school remains open for an extra few days. So, the last day of term at Bright Futures Secondary School will be 21st December and a Christmas party, for all the 500+ orphans and other vulnerable children, will be held on 22nd December which they are all very much looking forward to. We thank the generous donors who gifted money to feed the children an extra time to enable there to be a party.
Desks for the classrooms are being made thanks to donations we have received. If you would like to purchase a desk for use by a student, they are £20 each.
As it has been so busy, unfortunately, we have not had as many updates about sponsored children as we would have liked. I have now linked with one of the teachers who will work with me to remedy this and sponsors will be able to hear from their sponsored children a lot more regularly.
If you would like me to come and talk at your club, church or school (or for any event) I’d love to hear from you. I have a laptop, projector and screen and lots of photos to show!
Everyone is settling into a routine at Bright Futures Secondary School. Here are some photos from today of some of the young people. The boys have been playing football and the girls netball and football. The teachers are in the black and white stripe tops, being great role models for the teenagers and ensuring that the girls (as well as the boys) are playing team sports, keeping fit and healthy physically and mentally, learning new skills and growing in self-esteem.
I am still busy trying to raise money for desks and more textbooks then onto phase 2 of the school. By building two more classrooms, more vulnerable teenagers will benefit from a free secondary education as well as a hot nutritious lunch each day at school. Thank you to all those who have supported our fundraising. If you are able to donate to help provide desks and more textbooks, then here is the link https://gofund.me/44a92444
We have been extremely fortunate to have had donations of football kit and other sports kit from a variety of sources and we are very grateful for the donations and support we have received. If you see a kit that you recognise/donated in the photos or videos from this tournament, then feel free to share and tag teams or people.
The Foundation has hosted the first football tournament that will be held annually. It has been named after one of our supporters. Julian Chenery works tirelessly every weekend collecting preloved football kit and other sports kits to send to those who need them. Julian’s charity is called ‘Wear a Sports Shirt Day’ and that is what this annual tournament is called as a thank you for the ongoing support that Julian has given.
It has been very successful, well attended and enjoyed by all. Five teams received gifts of new (to them) football kits. The players in the local teams taking part are all aged between 14 and 20 years old.
Well done to The Bombers who were the overall winners beating Mtelera in the final3 – 1.
In one of the videos you will see a man talking to the crowd. This is Mr Msachi and he is the chairperson of The Area Development Committee for Chisenga District. I asked Levison to summarise what he had said. Levison said “He was saying this is the first well organised short tournament. He is really thankful to the donors. He is very happy.”
As I have been preparing this post, Levison has messaged to say that he has been contacted by a journalist from Tuntufye Radio who had heard about this football tournament!
Footballs are always needed so if anyone would like to donate money for footballs then please do email me firstname.lastname@example.org
I’m so thankful that it has been a success and was well organised, well attended and everyone enjoyed this first tournament. And, of course, we couldn’t do what we do without the help and support of everyone who has donated kit to us to send to The Foundation. It’s always about teamwork….so thank you for being part of our team. If you recognise any of the kits in this blog, then please do tag and share. Thank you again and hope you enjoy looking at the photos and videos. Sarah x
This is only a short post…it’s been a hugely busy week in Malawi (and also here).
The young people are on holiday from school and Levison and team thought a football tournament between local teams would be a good idea. So that is what has been happening today and will conclude tomorrow.
Unfortunately, Levison has been busy with other things today so there is just one short video clip of a match, however I have been promised more photos tomorrow!
This is going to be an annual event and we decided that it would be nice to name it after someone who has been very good to The Foundation. Julian Chenery, whose charity is Wear a Sports Shirt Day, works tirelessly every weekend (and sometimes midweek too) going to football clubs, schools, other sports clubs etc to collect preloved sports kit that can be reused by those who need it. He supports lots of organisations. Julian has supplied the Foundation with football kit, hockey kit, tracksuits, Christmas jumpers and Santa hats over the few years we have known him.
So, this is another opportunity to say thank you to Julian for supporting us and The Foundation. More photos and videos from ‘Wear a Sports Shirt Day Football Tournament’ will follow. Sarah x