Rumphi, Malawi … With the grain storage buildings of Joseph Projects 1 and 2 nearing completion, Dan Brewer, Treasurer for the Malawi Project, successfully obtained funding contributions for a 3rdProject. With the first two project sites in the central region, it was decided the 3rdwould be in northern Malawi.
Sites for Joseph Projects are based partially on the degree to which local farmers, churches, tribal authority, and Community development Agencies can work together to offer a strong degree of success for the Project. Other considerations gage the willingness of the local groups to commit their own time and resources to the program, as well as to how well they put together a plan for control and proper distribution of the stored grain.
After consideration of a number of sites, one site stood above the others. A local church in Rumphi made a proposal that stood out from the others, committing a partially completed building that would easily allow the project to be completed before the seasonal rains begin in November. The group was also willing to commit resources and manpower to the program.
Located seven hours north of Malawi’s capital city, Lilongwe, Rumphi is a trading center located in the area popularly known as the Henga Valley. To the west lay the Nyika Hills, a high mountainous area, and to the east localized hills, and Lake Malawi in the distance.
As in other parts of Malawi the people in this area are small farmers. They survive by producing food and cash crops on very small family sized plots of land, and they use very basic farming tools, panga knives, hoes and small baskets for their farming.
Many cannot raise enough food to last even a full year, and this contributes to cycles of famine year after year. The children and women are the first to suffer food insufficiency. Children are prone to malnutrition, and the women spend much of their time searching for children’s food. Only with improved crop production and better ways of storage can this cycle be broken.
The Mhumju Church of Christ in Rumphi is making available a partially constructed building on which they can easily change its purpose, and complete construction before the rains begin in November. Supplies have been delivered to the work site, and the building is well on the way to completion, thanks to the cooperative efforts of churches, community leaders, and tribal authority in Malawi, and contributors from the Malawi Project in the U. S.
Reported by Wilson Tembo