The world desperately needs people who can devote themselves for the services of others, those who can drop a “sweat” to put a smile on someone’s face. These people are all around us and we call them social workers, the invisible heroes!
It’s a bright summer morning at Chatuwa Primary school. Children are running about and playing various games since it's their break time. The excitement continues when a UNICEF vehicle drives into the school compound. Out of the vehicle walks a young lady called Sangie. Yes Sangie, one of Malawi’s top female reggae and dancehall artists.
Village Headman Kuruwe had a dream of improving the living conditions for children in his community. Using his influence he mobilized his community to mold bricks and with UNICEF's support they have managed to build a school block for learners.
Father Kadzingo, 37 is a priest and youth chaplain for the Roman Catholic Dedza diocese. In the past, youth chaplains used to be older men, but now the church is appointing younger priests who can better relate to adolescents. Perhaps because of his age, Father Kadzingo is passionate about youth issues and his enthusiasm is infectious. He smiles broadly and laughs as he chats outside Ntcheu Parish Church, with a new Chichewa translation of the Bible in his hands.
Today, on Saturday 23 June, Malawi is commemorating the International Day of People with Albinism. Unfortunately, people with albinism in Malawi are living in fear, following a series of violent attacks. The situation is worse for children because they are the most vulnerable and therefore the most targeted.
TA Bwanyambi is the Head Chief for Chowe, a large area of Mangochi District, covering 33 villages. She sits outside her house, which together with a brick mosque, sits in a dramatic location beneath a craggy mountain. Standing beside her with a broad smile is 18-year-old Edna, a girl she has saved from child marriage.
The clouds are clearing in Enukweni in rural Mzuzu after some summer rain in the afternoon. Children are gathering toys and playing games near the trading centre as they wait for the rest of their peers to arrive to participate in the afternoon’s children’s corner activities. A composed and cheerful Gertrude Chirambo is one of these children.
It’s a hot and sunny afternoon when Chief Kapoloma visits the home of teenage Fatima and her mother in Aisa village, Machinga district. He strides across the baked earth of a dried-out river bed, wearing a traditional robe and circular hat over smart shirt and trousers. The area is predominantly Muslim and there is a small brick mosque among the houses, adorned with a white star and crescent on the minaret. A cockerel calls out from a straw enclosure behind one of the mud brick houses.
On a Sunday morning in Dedza district, Reverend Fastele Banda takes to the podium of a large church. He starts talking, his voice becoming more animated as he holds forth on a subject that he is passionate about: ending child marriage.