Friday, 23 December 2011

Mission to Malawi

Our last Travellers' Tale this week, whisks us away from our wintry weather, to the heat and dust of Africa...

[caption id="attachment_1366" align="alignleft" width="225"]Mission to Malawi 1 Nicola carrying a toddler in the traditional manner[/caption]

Nicola Wright had only just started at Bertrams when she headed to Malawi for three weeks to get involved in a project designed to bring educational opportunities to children in rural areas. It was the trip of a lifetime for Nicola:

I used up most of my holiday for the year, but it was totally worth it!

Nicola packed plenty of things for the children such as pens, paper, skipping ropes and, of course, books! She explains:

I arrived on a Malawian public holiday so the kids were out of school and eager to play. That day, I played football, sang songs, danced, skipped, drew pictures and had the impossible task of trying to remember everyone’s names – prompting giggles from the children as, yet again, I got another name wrong.

[caption id="attachment_1367" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Mission to Malawi 2 Sheltering from the hot sun[/caption]

Nicola set to work making learning fun. She taught the children the alphabet, sang nursery rhymes with them, and played games. It was exhausting, but there was nothing more fantastic than seeing all the smiling faces!

[caption id="attachment_1368" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Mission to Malawi 3 It wasn't all work and no play![/caption]

It wasn’t all hard work for Nicola, as she also found time to visit Lake Malawi and go on safari. She’s even planning her next trip – I’m often asked if I’ll go back, and the answer
is not if, but when.

Even though she’s back in the UK, Nicola is keen to carry on helping the children she met in Malawi. Many of the children where I stayed walk miles and miles each day with no shoes, and children with cuts on their feet often get infections.

She’s collecting children’s shoes from friends and neighbours, which will be sent to
Malawi for these children, and would love it if the staff at Bertrams could help out. If you’ve got a pair of shoes that your child has outgrown, why not pass them on to Nicola and give them a new lease of life in Malawi? Any donated shoes are sure to be very much appreciated by the children who’ll receive them.

Email: Nicola dot Wright at bertrams dot com for more details.

[NB the email address is written out to prevent being picked up by spam programs]

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