100-150 AIDS orphans were crammed into two small mud-block classrooms at Kondanani Drop-in Day Care in Naisi, Zomba District, Malawi. A makeshift kitchen area was under a tree. The center was committed to accept as many orphans as possible to start them on their educational journey, to provide a safe place while their elderly grandmother caregivers worked in the fields, and it desired to provide one nutritious meal each day.
Drop-in day care centers provide orphaned preschoolers a chance to receive their early education in a safe environment without the burden of fees and uniforms plus the children are given one nutritious meal a day. Most orphans are either in child-headed households or are cared for by their aged grandmothers or great grandmothers who do not receive any government assistance. Kondanani provides that much needed helping hand!
With the partnership of another organization, a one-classroom brick building was constructed that also housed an office and reception. However, more classroom space and a kitchen was still needed.
We have constructed a 9 m X 13 m steel structure with roof that will house multiple classrooms along with a covered area for the kitchen. Other developments include:
Starting a chicken farm so they can have an income-generating activity that provides income for the daycare, pays teachers salaries, and purchasing supplies. Using the chicken manure for fertilizer resulting in higher yield of harvest. They now grow enough food to feed the children for the entire year.
Assisting in starting a pig farm for additional income which currently is being used to build teacher's homes and homes for elderly grandmother widows.
Teaching sewing to after school teens for them to develop a life-skill in which they can become self supporting.
Growing Moringa trees which provide firewood plus the added nutrition available from the highly nutritious edible leaves and seeds.
In April 2014, US Ambassador to Malawi, Jeanine Jackson and her husband visited Kondanani. She gave high praises for the work and sustainable development being done by Fingerprints Across Africa in partnership with Kondanani for the orphans in the community.
Together we are lasting impression and leaving a legacy on these children's lives!
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