Latest Newsletter

Hi folks,

2017 is fast getting away from us; we can’t believe it’s April already!

The Project held a Christmas Party for the children in December. Each child received a present and lollies. For some of the children this would have been their first Christmas party and the first time they received a present. It’s such a blessing to see the children so excited; ripping open their presents, enjoying their Christmas lunch and dancing the afternoon away. 

Education Support

The children have been back in school for a couple of months now looking great in their new school clothes. The Mwandi Basic School children now have proper school shoes rather than pata patas (thongs or flip flops) which is great for their feet and will also keep them warm in winter.

The Carpentry and Sewing Centres had a number of students graduating late last year and early this year. These students now have a set of skills they can use to generate income for themselves and their families. The Sewing Students are able to access short term loans that allow them to purchase a sewing machine helping them establish their sewing businesses. The next intake for these courses was in February 2017. If you would like to sponsor a student attending one of these courses please contact Mwandi OVC Education Sponsorship (Heather Scrimshaw) – mwandisponsorship@gmail.com

Sponsoring a student to attend university is a big commitment and challenge for a single sponsor. Many sponsors have been able to do this and we are so thankful for this, but it is a lot to ask. Therefore, the Project has established a University Fund. Through this Fund many sponsors can support students attending university. The Fund has been established for a couple of months now and already there is in enough funds available to send one student to University for a three-year course. The Education Committee is currently assessing student applications. Please keep the Committee and the students in your prayers.

Check out our Facebook page for the latest news from Education Sponsorship. There are several stories there from recently graduated university students about how Education Sponsorship has changed their lives. Click here: https://www.facebook.com/mwandiovcproject/ – Mwandi OVC Education News.

Gretchen Prime from Eyre Peninsula, will be heading over to Mwandi shortly to teach the children with special needs for 3 months.

Nutrition Support

The Nutrition Programme is currently providing one balanced meal a day to 255 children. A number of the children also receive vitamin rich food supplements and vitamin syrup. Milk scones have been introduced to the menu and the children are enjoying this tasty sweet.

The Food Relief Programme in Mwandi, run by World Renew. is coming to an end in April 2017. This may increase the number of children needing support in Mwandi particularly in their nutrition. We will keep you posted about this.

Counselling Centre

The counselling department is making a difference in the lives of the children who attend. Headed up by Mr Giblet Siame, the counsellors work with the children through many and varied issues. The difference in the children can be seen in their behaviour and attitudes. This is a vital programme of the Project that is contributing positively to the children’s lives daily.

Giblet has recently attended a Stepping Stones Counselling Training Workshop held with World Renew in Malawi. Stepping Stones is an approach that counsellors can use to facilitate vulnerable children and youth to fully explore personal, psychological and social aspects and their perception and behaviour; allowing them to make self-discoveries and practice ways of change to improve their lives.

Giblet reported that the training was relevant and had come at the right time. He will be using the skills gained from the training in his work with the children.

Staff & Volunteers

The Project now employs 47 staff as well as being assisted by many volunteers. The staff and volunteers go the extra mile to support the children at the Project including participating in the “Keep the OVC Project Grounds Clean” programme. Every Thursday the staff, volunteers and students clean up the grounds of the OVC Project and assist with preventative maintenance. This ensures the grounds and the buildings are maintained and clean. It’s great to see everybody pitching in to look after the Project buildings and property.

Construction Projects in progress

The construction of the new accommodation flats are almost complete, just the plumbing and fittings are required. The Project has received many enquiries from people interested in renting the flats. The income from the flats will be put towards the Project Staff Salaries

The foundation has been laid for the new children’s showers.

Agricultural Project

The Agricultural Project which supplies the OVC Project with fresh meat and milk is going through a difficult time. The Support Team is seeking a suitable volunteer to spend some time in Mwandi training local staff to operate and manage the Farm.

We need your prayers for this important project. If you have farming and management skills and would like to spend some time in Mwandi please contact the Mwandi OVC Project Support Team at mwandisupportteam@gmail.com

The Support Team are visiting agricultural areas on the West Coast of South Australia to speak with groups about the project. If you’re in that area keep an eye out for when they’ll be speaking and be sure to talk with one of the blokes, John Foster, Bevan Hancock or Robin Glover if you’re interested in supporting or volunteering for this project.

Project Coordinator

The Project is in conversation with the Synod of the United Church of Zambia about the appointment of a new Project Coordinator. Please join us in prayer for the right person to fill the position.

Mwandi OVC Website

We would like to thank Timothy Solomon for keeping the website up to date and running. This is an important information sharing tool and Timothy does a great job. Thank you Timothy!

Are you interested in Volunteering at the Project?

The Support Team would love to hear from you if you are interested in volunteering at the Project. Many people have been blessed in working with the staff and community. Your skills and abilities will benefit the children enormously but the blessing and benefits that you receive are just as incredible.

Please contact the Mwandi OVC Project Support Team at mwandisupportteam@gmail.com for further details. A decision to volunteer could change your life.

Fundraising for the Project

Fundraising is a fantastic way to support the Project and there are so many different fundraising ideas that are easy to run and so much fun. Fundraisers can be held in bible studies, work places, your local church or community. Fundraisers can be small or large. Ideas include Raffles, Walkathon, Golf Day Tournament, bake sales, Trivia events, Guess the number of Jelly Beans in the Jar, the list goes on…. Check out these websites for ideas:

www.fundraisingdirectory.com.au

www.rewarding-fundraising-ideas.com

All donations received will be used to make a difference in the lives of the children doing it tough in Mwandi Village.

If you would like to fundraise for a particular program (eg: Nutrition, University Fund, Garden or support activities (electricity, fuel, salaries)) please contact the Support Team at mwandisupportteam@gmail.com or Fiona Dixon-Thompson at uczovc@gmail.com for further details.

Prayer Requests

As always, we really need your prayers. God can do amazing things when we pray. In particular, please pray for:

  • Rain to continue and the drought to break to enable a good harvest. A good harvest means food on the table and a little extra to sell for income.
  • The children as they start school and the teachers who teach them
  • Protection of the OVC children in Mwandi each and every day
  • Agricultural Project
  • The Staff and Volunteers at the OVC Project
  • Financial support to continue for the OVC Project

Financial Support Requests

If you feel led to donate to the Project, the following items are of urgent need:

  • Internet – $150 per month
  • Fuel – $200 per month
  • Electricity for the Project – $250 per month
  • Counsellor’s allowance/token – $250 per month
  • Counselling training course (couples) – $1,000 for two counsellors to attend
  • Computer for Counselling Centre – $1,500
  • Solar pump and tank stand for new flats – $7,000
  • Salary for new Project Coordinator – total funds required still to be determined
  • Contributions to the University Fund
  • Contributions to the Special School Fees

 

Thank you so much for your continued support of the children of Mwandi Village.

Leonie and the Support Team

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