Over the past three years many of you have donated items and lots of money to transport educational supplies and uniforms to Schools in north Malawi. Since  my last visit in 2014, over 300 boxes have been delivered to 14 primary schools and 3 secondary schools, and it was wonderful to see many of the books that we sent in use, laptops from Woburn Lower School in action, Aspley Guise red shirts in several schools, chalk boards almost worn out, as well as many other items you had donated.
This time I was very fortunate to have two girls from Woburn District Rangers with me, who worked tirelessly, not only teaching health care, listening to students read, and supporting me with sporting activities, but also helping in the hospital, visiting new mums and babies, and sorting out cupboards, removing the occasional mouse!
We attended two church services, each two hours long, but the singing by the various choirs was amazing; it was almost like a concert.
I am pleased to say that the area looked a little more prosperous with many of the houses having corrugated iron roofs rather than grass and maize stalks, and many more children had shoes; well done to whoever invented crocs. however, the schools are really struggling as most classes have well over 100 students with one teacher and often no desks, chairs or books. There is still no mains water in most of the country, virtually no sewage system and less than 5% of the population have electricity in the rural areas, so lots of help is still needed.
I have an allotment and grow far too much for myself so, with all the donations you have given me for fruit and veg and with the help of a charity, we have set up a project in one of the poorest communities. Each family will receive a nanny goat and the community will be provided with a couple of billy goats. The first kid produced will be passed on to another family but the nanny remains their own; we hope they don't eat it straight away, but have more kids so that they can improve their finances.
Thank you!
Valerie Symon