Mrs Hepburn and Miss Maddison recently visited Malawi to see Songwe School and other schools supported by our partner charity African Vision. The charity manages many rural schools and nurseries in the Lilongwe area of the country.
"Songwe School is very remote, reached after about an hour of travelling along a potholed dusty road. On arriving at the school, we were welcomed by over 50 children running and cheering towards the battered minibus, with eager faces looking in. When the excitement had subsided, the whole school sat down in the shade, we were formally welcomed by the Deputy Head who then introduced us to the five teachers, everyone made us feel very welcome.
Miss Maddison and I introduced ourselves and talked about TPS, holding up pictures of our school and work produced by TPS pupils. One of the teachers translated our words into Chichewa for the children.
We had brought out many resources and clothing for the school which we showed to the children and each was greeted with a cheer. The biggest roar was for footballs, pencils, sharpeners and exercise books. Through generous donations made by the Parent’s Committee and charity days, we had enough equipment to give a pencil and exercise book to every child in the school. The sports tops and tracksuits donated by many families at TPS were distributed to the orphans who were the most in need of warm clothing.
We were shown round the classrooms at Songwe, where the children sat on the floor and were educated in classes of over 50. In the Headmasters office it was lovely to see a picture of TPS and work produced by our children up on the wall. We also walked across the new bridge which TPS had funded, and appreciated how vital it was as a crossing point for the school children and also the local community.
My favourite part of the visit was watching and listening to the children perform their African dances and songs, everyone involved displayed such energy and enjoyment.
The trip was very enlightening and over the week I learnt so much from meeting and spending time with the children, teachers and charity workers." Mrs Hepburn