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  • Rhoda's Story

    The Litchenza Samuti and Chamasowa Project in Malawi helped 1,500 people (300 families) get drinkable water. A child in Chamasowa Village tells how the project helped her.

    "My name is Rhoda Chiputu, I am 10 years old. I come from Chamasowa Village and am in Standard 3 at Chamasowa Primary School.

    "Before the construction of the borehole here at Likoto in Chamasowa Village, we used to fetch drinking water from an unprotected well, which was very inconsistent in terms of the flow of water. People used to crowd over there, spending more time on water collection. Sometimes the well could go dry and people had to wait for the water to start flowing again. Other people resorted to drawing water from the nearby river. In addition, during rainy seasons the well used to get mixed with run-off water with a lot of turbidity, dirt and waste. The children regularly suffered from diarrhoea; which resulted in high absenteeism from school and, hence, poor performance."

    Rhoda nearly dropped out from school in 2005 as her friends used to laugh at her in class due to her poor performance. Most of the days, Rhoda could not do her home work because she had no time, as she spent most of her afternoons helping her mother fetch water.

    "Now that there is a borehole in my community, the scarce potable water has become easily accessible; the distance to the water source has been much reduced; and this rainy season I have not suffered from diarrhea. I now spend less time collecting water than before and have more time to do my homework and concentrate in school. My performance is improving."

    You can help other project like this by donating to Blue Planet Run Foundation.

  • Raising Malawi

    Malawi, like Niger, is a land-locked country. Unlike Niger, more than 20% of Malawi is water—Lake Malawi. Most people do not have electricity. Most people have a pit toilet; 18% of rural household don't have a toilet. Forty-two percent of the women in rural areas can't read. You get the idea. It's a poor country. There are 2 million orphans and vulnerable children.

    Raising Malawi's goal is to end extreme poverty in Malawi. Started by Madonna and Michael Berg, they support many community-based organizations. Check them out and see how you can get involved. (Photo courtesy of Raising Malawi.)

  • Help Madonna Spend Her Money!

    That's right, you can draw down Madonna's bank roll by donating to Raising Malawi. She'll match every dollar you donate.

    Why Malawi?

    "We choose Malawi because we refuse to turn our backs on those in dire need. In the fourth poorest country in the world, Malawians face an unfortunate combination of disease, drought, poverty and a lack of critical resources. Confronting these extreme problems on a daily basis exacts a great toll. And few bear the brunt greater than the country's women and children—particularly the 2,000,000 orphaned and vulnerable children."

  • Hawa's Story: Collecting Water in Malawi

    From Water Aid:

    Eighteen year old Hawa Salimua is newly married. She lives in Mzalule, Malawi where a WaterAid well was installed in 2001. (Photo courtesy of WaterAid / Jon Spaull.)

    "I collect water from the handpump three times a day, in the morning, afternoon, and late afternoon," she says. "I use the water to wash my clothes, bathe, cook and clean. The water is much sweeter than it used to be when it was an open well. It was dirty then, but now it's clean."

    "We used to have a bucket on a string that we pulled up from the well and debris used to fall in which caused people to have terrible stomach pains. I was always getting diarrhoea with extremely painful stomachache and sometimes I remember seeing blood in my faeces. Now those stomach pains have vanished and it feels so hygienic to be drinking this water. I feel that my children will be born into a much better future because of this clean water."

  • Girls in Malawi will get a school

    Madonna's charitable organization—Raising Malawi—just broke ground on the construction of the Raising Malawi Academy for Girls in the city of Lilongwe. To mark the start of this energetic project, Madonna planted a Moringa tree.

    From Raising Malawi . . .

    "The Raising Malawi Academy for Girls campus will include a Library and Administration building, Dining Hall, Gymnasium, Wellness Center, Sports Field, 30 Classrooms, 12 Dormitories and 18 Staff Houses on a 46 hectare site. Our design concept for the Academy will utilize cutting edge environmental analysis with appropriate technologies to achieve sustainability goals such as passive ventilation, and natural light. Most construction materials are sourced locally, such as Hydraform bricks, made from soil on site, avoiding the use of burned bricks which have been largely responsible for wide spread deforestation in Malawi."