Spotlight on Jo’s visit to Malawi
Find Your Feet trustee Jo recently visited some the families we support in Mzuzu in Northern Malawi.
Who did you meet whilst in Malawi?
"I met most of the 20-strong Find Your Feet Malawi team. Some are based in their headquarters in Mzuzu, and others work out in the field. And of course, I met, shook hands, and danced with many, many villagers wherever I went.
All the areas we visited were out-lying villages mainly accessible only by foot. This makes communication, let alone commerce, between communities very difficult."
How were the people you met working to create change?
"In the village of Kacheche, the farmers were learning how to grow maize more efficiently in order to get a bigger crop, one that is more capable of withstanding climate extremes. They were also learning how to nurture goats to create manure for agriculture, and how to keep bees.
In Mbalachanda, the people were learning about nutrition and how to make and preserve a variety of tasty and nutritious foods using locally grown products. They were also discussing the importance of nutrition for those who are HIV+. Find Your Feet has successfully encouraged people to be assessed and treated for HIV/AIDS."
Why do you believe that Find Your Feet’s work is important?
"Find Your Feet's approach is founded on understanding people's day-to-day living and working conditions, working with them to improve those conditions, and adapt existing methods and systems.
The work isn’t about flying in money and expertise for a short time, it's about enabling people to share knowledge with one another. The resultant ripple effect means that enormous numbers of people are reached.
I was struck by Find Your Feet’s willingness to tap into and help strengthen existing social structures. This is how lasting improvements are maintained."
What struck you most about the communities you met?
"I was very struck by people's good sense, good cheer, and pride in their village and their country."