I’ve been amazed by how many wonderful, generous people support us to help the vulnerable children in rural northern Malawi.
We are facilitating Jack Mphande, Malawi Rugby Development officer to return to the rural north to work with teachers and children in primary schools as well as spending time with the children we help to support. Jack will be visiting for two weeks. His first visit was the first time rugby had been introduced and played in the north. Everyone loved it. They are looking forward to the end of September when he will visit again for two weeks.
Here, we have had people helping to provide kit, boots, balls and driving to pick donations up, box them up and drive them to Dundee to The Bananabox Trust to await the next container.
Some of the rugby clubs we have had support from include; Strathendrick Rugby Club (our local club who also raised money through a bake sale), Annan Rugby Club, Grangemouth Rugby Club, Hillfoots Rugby Club, Stirling County Rugby Club, Blaydon Rugby Club (Newcastle), Glasgow Warriors and Merchiston Castle School, Edinburgh. We are very grateful for all the donations we have received and these will be able to be shared with different school teams in Malawi.
This week we also had a huge donation from the Scottish Rugby Union; 200 tops/jerseys/jackets + socks and shorts! Plus some new Scotland jerseys to auction. Many thanks to Scott at SRU for your help. Also to Michael and Gordon and everyone else who has helped to collect and donate kit. Bruce at Merchiston Castle School (and Happiness is Egg Shaped) has also been a huge help in sharing posts as well as donating kit, balls and boots.
What we also need is for people to share posts to raise awareness. We’d love rugby clubs to be able to raise £50-£100 each to pay for the cost of sending kit to Malawi and cover the cost of the two week rugby event in September. We will need to feed all the children who are taking part in the rugby training & tournament as no big charities are feeding children in schools that far north.
Can you ask 50 people at your club for £1 each? Could you have a bake sale for us? Or have a carwash or a sponsored event? If lots of clubs can help us a little bit then teamwork will make it happen. Please mail me for more info or to offer your financial support. firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks for reading & supporting, Sarah x
As you know from yesterday’s blog, Team Mackay have been very busy clocking up kilometres for us in our fundraising event. We want to travel over 13,000km from here to Malawi following one of the routes the boxes take on the container ship, raising awareness and funds for Bright Futures Secondary School. Team Mackay made the news! – Changing Lives Malawi
The Mackay Family are from Drymen and Ewan was involved in the planning of the recent refurbishment of the bus stop in Drymen. It was painted by a talented local artist Cameron Reid and highlights The Rob Roy Way which starts in Drymen.
Yesterday, Team Mackay aka Jackie, Ewan, Ben and Adam, volunteered their trailer to take the last of our boxes to The Bananabox Trust warehouse in Dundee to await the next container. The warehouse is almost full, so it won’t be too long until the next container is packed and sent on its way.
After visiting The Bananabox Trust, they clocked up another 20km in Dundee whilst enjoying the sunshine and visited Discovery Point. Another busy day for Team Mackay! Thanks Jackie, Ewan, Ben and Adam. We appreciate all your help.
If you’d like to pay for a box to go on the container, it costs £15, and you can email me at email@example.com Or to donate to our fundraiser to build a desperately needed secondary school in rural northern Malawi here is the link https://gofund.me/44a92444 Let’s give the gift of education!
I can’t believe it is the first of September already! That means Traci’s challenge has finished. She emailed her results last night so here are the results.
Traci had set herself a challenge to walk 500km during July and August. However, she realised that she could do some more and changed her target to walk 700km during July and August. She has been sending regular updates and some great photos and I am in awe of how determined she has been to reach her goal. In fact, she has exceeded her goal by 10km. You are amazing Traci! Very well done!
All Traci’s kilometres have been added to the total that Jackie is keeping for us. As of today, 3,625.615km have been completed in UK plus 320km that the kids in Malawi clocked up in their run gives a total of 3,945.615km. This means we have travelled 30% of our journey now! Well done everyone!
We need more people to ‘donate’ their kilometres from their walks, runs or cycles to add them to our total. Whether you are just taking the dog for a walk or doing the shopping…every little helps…so please do tell us and we will add your kilometres to our total. It’s all about teamwork and we need you on our team.
We are covering the equivalent kilometres of one of the routes that the boxes take that we send from Scotland to Malawi. The aim of this challenge is to raise money and awareness to build a desperately needed secondary school in rural northern Malawi. Please donate if you can to help us give the gift of education to some of the most vulnerable young people in northern Malawi.
Here is the link to donate https://gofund.me/44a92444 to show your support for Traci’s brilliant achievement and to give the gift of education. Thanks for reading, Sarah x
Traci says “Well, thank goodness I was well ahead of the game before succumbing to Covid – I have been totally floored by it for the last 6 days and barely managed a lap of the garden. But I’m pleased to say I have still exceeded by target of walking 700km by the end of August. If you are able, donations for the wonderful work of Changing Lives Malawi to build a school would be most gratefully appreciated via https://gofund.me/44a92444 “
Traci and one of her sons jetted off to New York for a few days holiday. Traci has been doing a brilliant job of collecting kilometres for us for our challenge. We are raising funds to build a desperately needed school in rural northern Malawi by covering more than 13,000km which is one of the routes the boxes travel on the container ship and lorry. We need people to help us by donating a few £££ to give the gift of education. here’s the link https://gofund.me/44a92444
Traci also set herself a challenge and she must be very nearly at her goal…to walk 700km during July and August. She had originally aimed at doing 500km but quickly realised she could aim for more. Thank you so much Traci for all the kilometres you have done towards the total of our challenge. You’ve done an amazing job at raising awareness for our fundraiser and the need for a new school. It looks like you and Murray had a great time in New York!
As well as Team Mackay reaching the summit of Scafell Pike in the Lake District last week, another of the families who are supporting our challenge is Team Mottram.
Nigel, Stan and Fred climbed Ben Nevis the other day and sent us their kilometres…18km each. Unfortunately for them, they got very wet but were still smiling when they reached the summit. Ben Nevis, near Fort William, is the highest mountain in Scotland (and UK) at 1,345 metres above sea level. Thank you so much Team Mottram for donating your kilometres to us and for doing this challenge. Very well done to the three of you…it’s a huge achievement!
Wow! Traci is still clocking up those kilometres to help us with our challenge. She also set herself the challenge of walking 500km in July/August. When she saw that she could do more than that she decided to set her self the target of 700km in July/August. She’s amazing! and the photos of the scenery on her walks are beautiful. It’s been very hot during the last few days so I’m sure that it has been hard work. Very well done Traci and thank you.
Here’s what Traci wrote ‘Still clocking up km for Changing Lives Malawi, but this weekend I have swapped the Campsie Fells and the River Kelvin for the Moffat Hills and the River Annan. Just 129km to go to meet my 700km target. https://gofund.me/dd3a1be3‘
We need people to show their support for Traci and the rest of the team who are taking part in the kilometre challenge – travelling the distance boxes of aid travel from here to Malawi – to raise money for a much needed secondary school. Please donate so that the most vulnerable young people can go to school – education should be available for all. Please donate a few £££ and give the gift of education today. https://gofund.me/dd3a1be3 Let’s build a school! Thank you Traci for your hard work and raising awareness of the importance of this project. Thanks for reading and supporting, Sarah x
Education should be available to everyone. It should not matter where you live or what your background is. Help us build a school for vulnerable children in rural northern Malawi please? https://gofund.me/44a92444
We help support 500+ orphans and other vulnerable children through a variety of projects including a feeding programme which feeds 500+ children once a week with a substantial and nutritious meal. Unfortunately, there are no big agencies feeding children in this area in schools so the children are malnourished and hungry. Some children are walking up to 20km for this one proper meal of the week.
We have matched 90 of the most vulnerable children with sponsors. As well as receiving a monthly food parcel and welfare checks, sponsors pay for the child’s education when they go to secondary school. However, there are not enough places in the nearest secondary schools and eleven of the sponsored children didn’t get picked for a place at secondary school this year despite having passed primary school leavers exams and having the funds to pay for secondary school. If you don’t get picked then you don’t go. They have had to resit their last year of primary school again with the hope of being picked for a place this year. It’s heart breaking for them when they are trying so hard. They know education is their way out of dire poverty.
Can you help? Can you be part of the team that can help raise funds for a new secondary school? Please? We always say it’s about teamwork. We can’t do what we do without you. The nearest secondary school is too far to walk each day so children have to board which puts the cost up. Lots of families rely on their children to help with chores so a school in the village would be a far better option.
Our plan is to build the school in phases, adding to the school year on year. Prices have risen and the Malawian currency has been devalued. One classroom will cost approximately £7,000. A latrine block will cost £750. We have had some generous donations already. If we can raise enough money for three classrooms and two latrine blocks then building the first phase of the school to open this October 2022 will be achievable. That’s £22,500. We have £10,000 already and 70,000 bricks have already been made and are being stacked into kilns to be fired. So £12,500 to be raised. Can you please help us to give the gift of education to some of the most vulnerable children in rural northern Malawi.
Any donation of £500 or over can name a classroom. We are happy to partner with businesses to name a classroom after their company. Of course, we need lots and lots of smaller donations too. If 1,000 people all donated just £10 each then we would be almost there!! 130 chairs have been donated and are about to go on a container to Malawi. Preloved school uniforms have been collected. Eighty new school bags that had also been donated are on their way too along with lots of other items for the students. Let’s build a school!! https://gofund.me/44a92444
Merchiston Castle School had generously donated preloved rugby balls and kit which is also about to go to Malawi on the container. The orphans and other vulnerable children have had one rugby coaching session (and loved it) and more coaching and competition sessions between all the local primary schools in the Chitipa District in northern Malawi is being organised for this autumn. We have also had rugby donations from Annan Rugby Club and Strathendrick Rugby Club and we are very grateful. Rugby has arrived in northern Malawi for the first time! We’ve also had lots of football donations and netball bibs as football, rugby and netball will all be played by pupils at the new secondary school.
We have a fundraising event running at the moment which is open for anyone to join in. We are trying to cover the 13,000km + from here to The Foundation we support in Malawi, which is how far the boxes of aid travel via land and sea. So far we have covered 20% of that journey by people walking, running, cycling, scooting and rowing machine. Some of the young people in Malawi wanted to join in and they ran 4km each which added 320km to our total. You can join in too by adding your kilometres from walking the dog, walking to work, walking round the shops….whatever you are doing….we would love your kilometres. Here is the link to take part https://forms.gle/twQYfx7LRRrtvdhx9 or you can email me firstname.lastname@example.org and to donate to our fundraiser to build the school https://gofund.me/44a92444
Help us to give the gift of education. Help us to continue Changing Lives Malawi. Help us help the children. Thank you for reading and supporting, Sarah x
Jackie has written an update below of how the challenge is going.
Douglas & Lynda have been walking some of the Fife Coastal path and clocked up 67.5km. They also sent some beautiful photos. Thank you to both of them for their continued support.
Stuart and I managed some r&r in the East Neuk of Fife too and have added our km although nowhere near as impressive. Thanks for reading and supporting, Sarah x
“Hello All – Well the BALFRON TO BRIGHT FUTURES SECONDARY SCHOOL CHALLENGE has just passed its first month
The various people involved (a small team of 7 so far) have clocked up 1,817.805km. In addition the kids in Malawi have run 320km to join in.
This is a total of 2,137.805km an amazing 16.26% of the way to walk/cycle/run/hop/skip/jump the 13,144km that represents the journey from Balfron to Ibuluma in Northern Malawi.
So far over £8k has been raised (a lot off line so the GoFundMe looks a bit light!) but as prices are rising fast in Malawi just like here the sooner material can be bought the better so we really need to raise lots more money sooner rather than later.
Can you help Build the Bright Futures Secondary School? Ways to help:-
Didn’t someone sing a song about that? Yes… now I’ve got that tune in your heads… the answer is Willie Nelson!!
Stuart and I packed some more boxes and took 16 of them to Dundee today to The Bananabox Trust warehouse to be processed and then await the next container.
Whilst at the BBT warehouse I took some photos to show Levison the chairs that are being sent for the school and a few tables. Hopefully, we will find more secondhand tables here to prevent them going to landfill or local carpenters will make desks in Malawi.
Only a short blog today… wonder if I can add our kms to the challenge? Lol I think that answer will be ‘no’ but I’ve added a map to show you the route of the first 111km that the boxes travel. Thanks for reading, Sarah x
Jackie is one of the people who has embraced our kilometre challenge and has been doing lots of cycling. She is also keeping a note of the totals for me.
Jackie and family have been helping to move a boat through the locks on the Crinan Canal. There are 15 locks along the canal to move the boats from one level to the next. Jackie had her bike with her and was running and cycling between the locks adding to her total kilometres.
It is a beautiful place and I had said to Jackie last week that there would be lots of tourists watching them open and close the locks as the boat travelled through the different sections. There were no tourists! The rain could not have been any heavier and poor Jackie (and everyone else) got absolutely soaked. She is very brave for allowing me to post a photo of her looking a little bit wet and fed up! Well done Jackie and thank you for adding lots of kilometres to our total.
So I’m going to post a couple of photos to show you how beautiful the scenery is then Jackie’s photos and the route she was running/cycling back and forward!
The new totals are U.K. 1,250.285 kilometres, Malawi 320km = 1,570.285 kilometres which is 11.95% of our total.