April Malawi Update

“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in ChrisJesus” –
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV)

The circumstances of the last couple of years have definitely been challenging, and as this report shares, continue to be, but we know that in the midst of these challenges we can rejoice, pray and give thanks.  We are thankful for our supporters who lift up the work of FVM in prayer each month and we ask that you continue to do so in light of recent events in Malawi.  In the period between mid-February and mid-March 2022, the people of Malawi have been hit by four disasters: Cyclone Anna, Cyclone Gombe, the resurfacing of polio, and the trickle-down effects of the on-going Russia-Ukraine war crisis. 

Malawi is a country with 75% of its population living below the poverty line (less than $1 per day) and depends on peasant farming for its survival.  The damage done by the two storms that have destroyed crops, animals, houses and taken some lives has been devastating for the people of Malawi. 

After more than 60 houses were demolished by the storm due to Cyclone Anna, an additional more than 50 houses have again been destroyed by Cyclone Gombe in GVH Taulo.  Since March 12th, 173 people have been living at evacuation centres (42 at the FVM child care facility, while 131 at Sunuzi School).
Most of the affected areas are difficult to reach as the roads are in bad shape and some have been rendered impassable due to the heavy rains which the affected areas continues to receive.

Most of the farm land has been destroyed causing perpetual hunger until next year when hopefully the situation will be favourable in the next growing season.  Of high concern is the rise of Cholera cases, which often results from stagnant water in flash flood areas.  There are as many as 10 cases of Cholera in Nsanje, and as Cholera transmits like fire in the bush we ask for your prayers.

We can be thankful that in times like these, our preschool feeding program continues to operate.  Upwards of 400 children continue to receive nutritious food in the two child-care centres. 

We are so very thankful for the many dedicated volunteers, and for your continued support of this important program. 
With many families displaced from their homes, it is important to know that the children will have nutritious food in their day.

​Also to report, a three-year-old girl has been diagnosed with polio in Lilongwe, the country’s capital.  Polio is a viral infection that invades the nervous system and can cause paralysis that leads to permanent disability. There is no cure for polio.  Malawi was declared polio-free 22 years ago, but this case is quite concerning, especially in a country with an already fragile health care system.  The Malawi government called the outbreak a public health emergency and a massive Polio vaccination was commenced March 21, 2022 for all children under five-years-old.  

Finally, as in many other areas of the world, the effects of the Russia-Ukraine war have already started manifesting in Malawi with scarcity of bread which has forced increase in prices. Prices of oil (gas) and fertilizer are most likely to escalate beyond imagination soon.  Please continue to pray for this situation.

Tiwonge, our new Finance Officer, loves spending time with the children.

ADDITIONAL PRAYER POINTS:

  • A teacher volunteers’ refresher course has commenced with 9 teacher volunteers attending training for two weeks.  Please pray for Richard Katete, a teaching volunteer, who has been sick and unable to attend the training.
  • We hare happy to announce the wedding ceremony of Pastor Justine Falinya and Elsie Ngoleka on April 9th, 2022.  Pastor Falinya is like a FVM missionary who evangelized the areas where FVM carries its activities (2011-2015). He was struck with a stroke while preaching at GVH Taulo in 2016. He lost his first wife in May 2009.  Please pray for the upcoming wedding ceremony and blessings in their marriage.

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