Kirsty’s first week
After the long journey from Ireland to Malawi, I arrived at the airport in Lilongwe on Sunday afternoon, where I was warmly welcomed by Harisen who had come to collect me. The scenic drive from Lilongwe to Mzuzu through the many towns and villages was a great introduction to the Malawian way of life. When we arrived in Mzuzu, I was welcomed by Phill into my new home in Chimarilo, looking forward to meeting the Wells for Zoë team the next day.
On Monday morning, I was introduced to everyone at the Wells for Zoë office, factory and farm. Rose gave me a tour, showing me all the different work being done by the team every day and the various types of fruits and vegetables that are being grown. In the afternoon, Rose and Harisen took me to the sustainable farm in Lusangazi. It was fantastic to see all the sustainable farming work being done there and being introduced to all the amazing hard workers. I look forward to learning more about the organic techniques Wells for Zoë use on the sustainable farm.
On Tuesday, I worked with Fatima on editing and adding to the Pump Installations Excel spreadsheet. This data includes factors such as installation date, area, latitude and longitude, pump number and pump dedication. This information will then be added to the Wells for Zoë website featuring pictures of the benefitted communities with their newly installed pump.
I went with Margret (Head of Preschools), Fatima and Ellen to visit two preschools in Zolozolo on Wednesday morning. The children were all very excited about the visit and had lots of fun singing and dancing with all of us, and then taking turns to count numbers in English using the empty cartons that we brought with us.
When we arrived back, I sat with Fatima as she added the information that was collected from the preschools to the Preschools excel spreadsheet, which includes factors such as distance from factory, water source, local MP, kitchen and toilet facilities and number of children and carers.
On Thursday morning, I worked with Pheobe and Ennet as they edited and added information to the planting trees spreadsheet on Excel. This information includes number of seeds potted, number of seeds planted or unplanted, and whether any assistance is required to plant the trees.
In the afternoon I worked with Fatima on uploading recent photos to Flickr, and later added the Flickr ID’s of the photos taken at Uchizi and Praise Botanic preschools on Wednesday to the Excel Preschools spreadsheet.
On Thursday, I went along to three pump installations in Nhkatabay with Alfred, Benjamin and Martina. The views on the way to the communities were amazing, and it was fantastic to see not only how the pumps are assembled, but how involved the benefited communities become in the process and the joy that the Wells for Zoë pumps bring to their lives. Factors such as previous water source, distance from nearest preschool, primary school and secondary school, number of people served, number of gogos, and types of fruit and veg grown were assessed to add to the Wells for Zoë pump installation database.
On Saturday, I worked on social media posts for the Wells for Zoë Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts, compiling pictures of my time in Malawi so far as an introductory post. It was also lovely to finally experience how happy all the Girl Child Students were to be coming to lessons every Saturday.
This picture below is of me enjoying Malawi’s staple food – nsima!
Looking forward to seeing what my second week at Wells for Zoë brings!