The Dòchas Education Trust
advancing individuals through education, training and learning
Community Education Project
Through working with church and community leaders we hope to deliver training in public health, the Rights of the Child and child development.
To address illiteracy in the communities we will train local people to teach literacy skills in their own language (Chichewa). As the official language of Malawi is English we will also run English language classes.
This year aid was delivered in the form of 'Baby bags' and mosquito nets.The church leaders distributed them to womenwith babies in their communities who were in need. They were also encouraging the women to use the mosquito nets and to register their child's birth.
More 'Baby bags' were delivered this year only on this occasion they were taken to the maternity ward at Nsanje hospital. The mother's were delighted with the gifts and we hope to be able to continue to gift baby bags in the future.
Everything we do must be God glorifying, sustainable and empowering.
At some time in 2010, suitable accommodation etc for the Bible and Community Projects will be identified and arrangements made for local publicity for the launch of the programme. It is hoped that the first team for the Bible and Community Education Project will go to Nsanje in 2011.
Mother and daughter, Denise and Katie Sanders, from Strachan are heading out to Southern Malawi later this month to teach 100 women to knit.
This project came about following a request from ladies who had attended previous Dòchas events. The training on the UN Convention Rights of the Child and encouragement to the churches to look after the poor in their communities sparked a desire to do something and they decided that if they could knit they could help provide clothes for their orphans, many of whom are victims of HIV Aids.
When Denise, a keen knitter, heard about this she set to work planning how she could help and Katie decided to join her. They will be working in three villages spending three days in each. The area has one of the highest illiteracy rates in the country so they have prepared a heavily illustrated instruction booklet. They will teach the various skills require to knit a blanket. Some of the women will progress to make ‘fish and chip’ jumpers and hats.
It is hoped that through this enterprise the women will begin to gain some self respect and that their position in their society will start to change as well as the benefits to orphans.
Denise is putting together starter kits to give to each woman from items already donated by local people and businesses but is still looking for the following:
tape measures, scissors, stitch holders and darning needles..
The training events also provide the people attending with a snack and a main meal and that, together with the hire of a venue and translators, amounts to £4 per head per day totalling £1,200. If anyone would like to make a donation to the kits or to the costs of running the training event visit Denise's Just Giving page www.justgiving.com/Denise-Sanders0 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
In May Denise and Morag went to Nsanje to launch PROJECT ANA - ana is Chichewa for children. This project is a discreet project aimed at equipping the local ladies to help the orphans and vulnerable children in their communities.
This trip the project focussed on teaching the women how to make re-usable sanitary kits for girls. There is a very high drop out rate amongst girls once they reach puberty so this is aimed at helping girls remain in education. Some of the women who were trained in May are now going into the schools to teach the girls how to make the kits.
Dochas is providing materials for those girls whose families are unable to pay for materials. For this first round of teaching 160 girls need to have materials provided. It costs around £4 (depending on the hugely fluctuating exchange rate) to provide a kit that will last 2-3 years.
The ladies are continuing to knit and this year alone have provided garments for for 150 OVCs.
If you would like to hold a 'Pink Envelope Event' to raise funds for these kits please email email@example.com for an information pack or visit Denise's Just Giving page - www.justgiving.com/Denise-Sanders0
Albyn School in Aberdeen have been busy raising funds and collected £415 through various activities specifically for sewing machines. In 2014 we hope to teach the ladies to use the sewing machines so that they can make uniforms for orphans. In order to register for school in Malawi a child must have a uniform so this is a key way we can help children get into education. Sewing machines cost between £90-130, we would like each location we work in to have at least 2 sewing machines, meaning 8 in all. (Although we only visit 3 locations when we are teaching the ladies on Nyachakadza kindly make the trip from their island in the Shire river to Nyachiienda in a dug out canoe to join us there.).
Denise showing the ladies how to measure and cut the fabric.