Lilongwe, Malawi … Several years ago, when faced with a difficult project that was not turning out as expected, a wise Malawian smiled and said, “All days are not Sundays.” More than once his words have proven prophetic when a particular project did not reap the expected results, took longer than expected, or needed realignment to bring about a better result. 

This is true in any culture and the solution rests with those closest to the problem, in this case, the Malawians themselves. While the methods of problem-solving are a bit different in Malawi than in Western nations, the result is usually the same. Given time the Malawians come up with the answers that fit best in their part of the world and solutions that move the project back on course to reach the same original goal.

Tomato harvests, and profit projections, that spurred the purchase of four greenhouses at the Action for Progress headquarters, which were projected to add substantially to overhead costs at the distribution center, proved a bit too optimistic for the first harvest and did not bring quite the return that was expected in its early predictions. 

“Not to worry,” said the Malawi staff at AfP headquarters. “We know the problems, and we are on it,” they reassured contributors. Two factors contributed to the shortfall, one an unexpected overproduction of tomatoes regionally during the dry months in 2023, and second an infestation of insects that cut into the return on investment. Neither of these problems appears ongoing with the current second crop, which is reaching for the ceiling of the greenhouses. Few people in Malawi can raise tomatoes during the heavy rains so this situation should change from a bumper crop that collapses prices, and two, measures are in place to avoid the unexpected insects that visited the earlier greenhouse crops. If these prove true, this second crop should reach the expectations projected for the earlier crops. Translation, “Don’t worry, we have this one covered.”

Perhaps the slogan should not be, “All Days are Not Sundays” to “If You Don’t Succeed Try, Try Again.” The new crop, pictured here, is coming to harvest during the rainy season and it holds great promise of success. 

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