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Miriam Banda


It doesn't take any kind of genius or perception to realise that Malawi will sink or swim on whether it's women get opportunities currently denied them. What brought us back to Malawi and inspired us form the organisation Wells for Zoë, was its women and

Mary Mwanza with chicks Lusangazi

Mary Mwanza

I will remember forever the first time I met Mary. She was thin, scrawny, fragile, timid and very afraid. Maybe she was afraid of me, being white, because at that time she had probably seen very few white faces. White people, even now are rarely

To the past through the future

Now and again, when I have a minute, I reflect on my life and maybe wonder at how far I have come from my West Roscommon heritage. I mean the astonishing pace of progress, from thatch, candles, tilly lamps, bringing the sod of turf to

Women walking to well for water

A forgotten story: Jacob’s Well

I suppose sometimes when I write it’s a bit of a rant, but today there’s a bit of an ulterior motive - a catch - which is serious; maybe a matter of life and death. For the past week we have been visiting schools, like 750

Water for Wedding Guests

Water for Wedding Guests

Do you like a story with a happy beginning, middle and ending: well this is one. Friends of our daughter Caitríona, John and Louise, are getting married today and wanted to give a meaningful pressie to their guests. They thought clean water is the one,

Mama Gondwe & William

Mama Gondwe and her handbag!

On February 11th last (2010), I sat beside an old gogo (granny) outside the pump factory in Mzuzu. We communicated with a real Malawi handshake and a few smiles. When I threw in my few words of Tumbuka, she bent over laughing. She was in

Woman drinking at pump

Minor Miracles

In Malawi, I often don’t know what day of the week it is and I’d normally be hard pressed to say what month it is, but its November, birthday time, not the best time if you want to avoid the spiraling numbers. Dawn is just

Karine Polwart

Karine Polwart’s “Wells for Zoë” video

By the time I get to this third track on the album, I feel like a small boy in a sweet shop, where every choice is beyond my imaginings. I was musically introduced to my third artist by Éamonn, and when I heard Daisy, I

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