Thriving and Dreaming Big

[fa icon="calendar'] Apr 17, 2020 12:00:00 PM / by Paul Nkhata posted in Economic Empowerment, Impact Stories, Malawi, WV


Killion, aged 51, and his family struggled with life. Born and raised in Mng’ona village in the Chilenje community, he accepted the status quo of being a villager. Poverty was part of life. He never produced enough maize (corn) to last all year round due to poor farming practices. As a family, they were sleeping in a grass-thatched house that would leak during the rainy season. “Life was difficult. We lacked food especially during the lean periods. We used to sleep in a grass-thatched house.

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Empowering Women to THRIVE

[fa icon="calendar'] Feb 28, 2020 8:53:59 AM / by World Vision Staff posted in Economic Empowerment, Malawi, THRIVE, Women and Girls, WV, International Day



Although women make up almost half of the agricultural workforce across Africa — and perform 80% of the labor on smallholder farms — millions of them don’t have access to financial services, training, and other opportunities that could help them escape poverty.

These inequalities don’t just hurt women — they cripple entire nations, holding back about half the population from participating in a society’s economic growth. It’s estimated that if women in these communities could afford productive resources like business training, seeds, and fertilizer, up to 150 million fewer people would go hungry every day.

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Clean Water Eases Cassava Production

[fa icon="calendar'] Feb 21, 2020 12:00:00 PM / by Paul Nkhata posted in Water, Impact Stories, Malawi, WV

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Ales remembers collecting cassava from the stagnant pools of muddy water. For Ales Nyasulu, who lives in the Chikwina-Mpamba Area Program in Malawi, cassava is a primary source of food for her family. “We depend on cassava as our staple food in this community. The process of coming up with cassava flour demands that we soak the cassava in water for some days before it is dried up and ready for pounding,” she says. “Since we had no source of potable water, we had to depend on swamps or dirty pools of water along the valleys,” says Ales.

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From Tenant to Owner

[fa icon="calendar'] Jan 31, 2020 12:00:00 PM / by Paul Nkhata posted in Economic Empowerment, Impact Stories, Malawi, WV

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Ester feeds the pigs she is raising for income

Ester remembers how frightened she was, especially after she was divorced and took over the responsibility of raising her four boys on her own. Ester hails from Timbiri village in the Chikwina-Mpamba Area Program, some 240 miles north of Malawi’s capital city of Lilongwe. As a divorced woman, she struggled to find shelter, food and other basic necessities for her children including paying school fees and other school supplies.

“Life was hopeless, and I had no tangible source of income for the home. Fetching (searching for money) for rent-als every month added salt to the wound. I really felt the pinch of leading a single headed household. Even to find money to buy fertilizer for farming was a big hassle,” says Ester.

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More Than Clean Water

[fa icon="calendar'] Dec 13, 2019 12:00:00 PM / by Paul Nkhata posted in Water, Impact Stories, Malawi, WV

Monica now has water to grow vegetables in her backyard garden

Access to safe water continues to be a challenge in most parts of the developing world, including Malawi. This was true of Zgalambe village in the Mutchenda Area Program, where Monica Phiri and her family live. The only source of contaminated water was the nearby river about 2 kilometers away from the village. At the same time, no person would ever think of having a backyard vegetable garden that could be a source of vitamins and other nutrients good for the health of children and adults. Research shows that every day nearly 1,000 children die from diarrhea caused by contaminated water, poor sanitation and unsafe hygiene practices.

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Better and Better Every Day

[fa icon="calendar'] Dec 11, 2019 3:36:09 PM / by Paul Nkhata posted in Economic Empowerment, Impact Stories, Malawi, WV

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Lucy with several of her goats

Many families in central Malawi depend on tobacco as their main cash crop. The same was true for Lucy Ka-jani and her family. Lucy was quick to point out the years she spent on tobacco farming that did not produce much change in her life. Lucy is a mother of 6 but was widowed 3 years ago. “We used to invest much in tobacco, but the dividends were not as satisfactory. We used to grow tobacco out of routine since we had no tangible alternative. This practice was deeply entrenched in us,” explains Lucy. Lucy shared that there were times after taking out loans for investing into tobacco farming, when they could not realize profits.

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Village Savings Provide Nutritional Lessons

[fa icon="calendar'] Jul 10, 2019 12:08:00 PM / by Paul Nkhata posted in Economic Empowerment, Impact Stories, Malawi, WV


Witness was widowed some years ago. In her early 60’s, she had to endure the burden of taking care of 7 grandchildren because their parents (her two elderly children) trekked to South Africa in search of greener pastures. As such, she single-handedly took over the responsibility of looking after the grandchildren with little support from their biological parents in South Africa. Her adult children held only menial jobs and sending support back home is difficult due to legal constraints.

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A Woman of Economic Influence

[fa icon="calendar'] Mar 15, 2019 10:00:00 AM / by Paul Nkhata posted in Economic Empowerment, Impact Stories, Malawi, WV

Grace and her son inspect the corn

Lack of economic independence is one of the plights of many African women, especially in rural areas. In many African countries, men are the bread winners. This was true of Grace Njikho of Kamphalo village in Chikwina-Mpamba Area Program in Malawi. Married over 31 years and a mother of 5 children, she depended on her husband for everything. She never engaged in any form of business to gain income or supplement what her husband earned. For her, being married, meant the husband had to shoulder total responsibility for everything. “Before the THRIVE Project, I could hardly think of engaging in any form of micro enterprise for additional income for our household. I thought my husband was there to provide everything for the home,” said Grace.

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A Changed Mind, Heart and Pocket

[fa icon="calendar'] Dec 21, 2018 8:08:34 PM / by Paul Nkhata posted in Economic Empowerment, Impact Stories, Malawi, THRIVE, WV


Liyana Zenasi hails from Zenasi village in Chilenje Area Program in Malawi. She is married to Enosi and together, they have 4 children, age ranging from 6 to 18. For years, they have engaged in rain-fed subsistence farming, using traditional farming methods and with no involvement into micro enterprise. Providing for the family’s basic needs and supporting children with school supplies was an uphill task. They could hardly harvest enough from their fields and had no other source of income.

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From embarrassment to celebration in Malawi: Sanitary rooms help keep girls in school

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 21, 2018 2:47:43 PM / by Charles Kabena posted in Water, Impact Stories, Malawi, Women and Girls, WV

school_girlsInstead of celebrating adolescence, 19-year-old, mother of two, Malita, recalls days filled with pain and societal seclusion, which resulted in her dropping out of school. Malita remembers that she and her female peers had to endure taunts and stigmas at school where there was no support as they went through adolescence. 

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