Newsletter 6 August 2006

 Newsletter No 6 August 2006

Issue No 6 ~ August 2006

Once again its time to bring you up to date with news from the Nchima Trust. Its been a good year, which thanks to your continued support has enabled us to accomplish many projects and support many people in Malawi. You may remember we sent out a Christmas Wish list asking people to make a donation rather than send Christmas cards. This was a great success and raised in excess of £3000.00. Malawi last year was experiencing drought conditions and a huge shortage of seed maize and fertiliser. As a result prices rocketed putting seed maize out of reach of most families. Many of you made donations without specifying a particular use. Thanks to this, we were able to buy seed and fertilizer for families who would have been destitute without help. Donations weren't only limited to Christmas, we have had many throughout the year. Chris Jones and family donated two bicycles. They were given to The Ndirande Churches Association who look after the sick in Ndirande township. Chave Collisson Trust gave £50000 for two wells which have been dug in Thyolo and Dedza. Glenys Hughes Director of Orkney's St. Magnus Festival raised £868.00 from a concert in St Magnus Cathedral. As she had recently been to Malawi she asked for the money to sponsor Secondary School Students.

Wimbledon is a time we all enjoy, thanks to St Mary's Church Wimbledon during the tennis fortnight 2005 they raised £1600 which we put towards funding nurses. Joanne & David Miller asked to sponsor two students at Thyolo Secondary School. Graham Ruthen & Sue Edwards continue to support four of our medical students. Vikki & Mike Mchugh and Richard & Molly Pilbrow asked us to buy an ambucycle which we gave to the Billy Riordan Clinic at Cape Maclear. This is a bicycle with a stretcher attached to the back wheels for transporting very sick people from village to hospital. The cycle cost £117.00 and was well received. Mrs Aston recently gave us £1000 and asked us to put this to a project connected to water resources. Our representatives in Malawi are looking out for something suitable. Top of the wish list at Christmas was a request from Prof. Elizabeth Molyneux for an oxygen concentrator and locally made incubators. Thanks to a donation of £1500 from ARCAID we have been able to buy the oxygen concentrator and two locally made incubators for Prof. Molyneux.

We have continued with our ongoing projects still supporting Street Children and Friends of Sick Children the paediatric ward at Queen Elizabeth hospital in Blantyre. Dr. Grace Malenga runs F.S.C. and this year we added an extra dimension by giving £1000 for women and children in prison. A section of the community who desperately need help but are forgotten. Our thanks to Dr Malenga who organised this for us. Ann Scarborough did a prison visit and found many women spending years in prison for minor crimes and never ever getting their day in court as they have no one to speak out for them. Due to the lack of Doctors, Clinical Officers and Medical assistants are the back bone of healthcare in Malawi. Most clinics and bush hospitals are managed by Clinical Officers. The training lasts for 4 years and once completed they face a difficult and never ending job. We have been able to sponsor three clinical officer students this year. It costs £1500 per year to train a clinical officer. Much more expensive than a doctor, as there is no government subsidy.

This year for the first time we sent medical drugs and equipment through a company in Holland to Malawi the recipients are Lucy Finch who runs a clinic in Salema, John Russell from St Joseph's hospital Ngludi, St, Martins Hospital Malindi and Dr. Malenga QE Blantyre.

We are still supporting up to 100 secondary school students at any one time, and have 2 students at Chancellor College Zomba studying Education. Lister Philmon a single mother is doing a TEVET secretarial course in Lilongwe. At Comboni Technical Centre Lunzu, we have students studying Carpentry and Joiner and Electrical Installation. We have also sponsored 2 job creation projects at C.T.C. This a scheme where students leaving the college apply for a loan to set up in business. As their business increases they repay the loan to C.T.C which enables the centre to sponsor more job creation programmes.

As in past years HIV/Aids, famine, drought, flood and lack of organised distribution of basic essentials still takes its toll on Malawi. Ann Davidson and Margarite Sacranie are doing excellent work feeding orphans in outreach villages. The work is never ending and cost increases rapidly. We were able to give both these ladies £1000 each to help with their work. One of the biggest problems in all villages is feeding orphans. Not only the cost of food but the cost to the environment in providing wood for all the cooking. During her visit to Malawi Ann Scarborough found a company in Mulanje making excellent fuel saving stoves. You can see from the picture how economical one of these stoves are in comparison to the traditional way of cooking. A small family stove costs £44, a medium size stove like the one shown here costs £370 and will feed up to 200 people and a large stove costing £500 will feed up to 500 people. We have bought 4 medium sized stoves to give to Ann and Margarite for their feeding programmes. Another has gone to Lucy Finch for her clinic and another to the paediatric ward for the carers kitchen at QE Hospital in Blantyre.

We still have our two excellent helpers in Malawi Janet Hanlon and Sandra Skene. I'm sure they dread opening their email boxes and seeing messages from me. They hold everything together and manage to keep us up to date with all our projects in Malawi. I asked Janet to send me a few comments from Malawi to put in the news letter. She tells me there has been plenty of rain, which is very good for crops but makes roads impassable. The President has encouraged planting and good rains has ensured there is plenty of maize. As with all things the business men have bought up all the stocks of maize which in turn has pushed up prices. Woolly jumpers and vests have been needed this winter its been very cold. For those of you who know Malawi especially the Blantyre - Mulanje area. At long last the Mdima road has been tarred. This will make a huge difference to people travelling between Mulanje to Blantyre the journey time is now 50 minutes. Limbe has been given a face lift, street vendors have all been moved off the streets and the President has ordered that all buildings in Limbe be smartened up and painted. Beware anyone visiting Malawi, from 1st July breathalysers and radar guns to deter speeding motorists were brought in throughout the country.

These two beautiful little girls are Aids orphans. Ann Scarborough met them whilst she was in Malawi and asked The Nchima Trust to pay their school fees in a bid to keep them in school. If any one would like to help in sponsoring them. School fees and uniforms for the two are £75 per year. School Fees in Malawi vary greatly. There are many private schools all over the country interspersed with government schools. We sponsor children on their need and ability what ever school they go to. It's a sad fact children at the government schools do not do well. Teachers are poorly if ever paid. They have little equipment and what they have is old and outdated. Often its one book per subject per class and any thing up to 80 children or more per class. If a school gets a good head teacher it prospers for a while then that person is usually moved and standards drop.


A note to end on

In 1894 a benevolent London merchant was approached by a stranger for a loan of £2000 with security on the mortgage of a tract of land in Nyasaland in Central Africa. He reneged on the loan repayments and thus began the story of the Nchima Tea and Tung Estate. The merchant was the great grandfather of Rosalind Richards our present day chairlady and her brother Sharifin Gardiner a present day board member of the Nchima Trust. This merchants company became a family concern. Under the management of Rosalind and Sharifins father the estate became a jewel in the crown of colonial Nyasaland. As the company prospered The Nchima Estate learned to honour its responsibilities for the welfare of the African labourers and their families. This is how the Nchima Trust came about. It was set up in 1962 by members of the Gardiner family who made over their shareholdings in the parent company to provide an income for the Trust. Eventually the company had to be sold and the Trust acquired independent status while keeping the name Nchima.


What does the Trust do?

The trust describes itself as " A source of help for the people of Malawi"


Contact:- Josie Quinn 3 Close House Cottages Knock Cumbria CA16 6DL 017683 62380