Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Day Six - Mary’s Meals

It was an early start this morning as we headed down to Nansato School to see the Mary’s Meals programme.  We arrived to find four huge pots of phala ready to be served and children starting to line up.  Because there hadn’t been any phala the previous couple of days, some of the kids came without cups or bowls but they soon improvised.  It was such an amazing site to see the pupils eating and enjoying some healthy food.
About half an hour later, Mr Kajani, the Head of Programmes for Mary’s Meals arrived.  He  had driven down from Blantyre (about an hour) to meet us as Mr. Banda (with whom I spoke to the previous day)was tied up initially.  We had a great discussion with Mr Kajani about the programme and learned a couple of new things about it.  The take up rate of Mary’s Meals now is approaching 94% of learners and they are now in more than 900 schools in Malawi.  The government this term has extended the school session by a week which has caused great difficulties for the programme as they have run out of stock.  Mary’s Meals get all their phala straight from the distributor and have no storage facilities.
In discussion, I mentioned that my husband had raised £1000 for the programme from his 40th birthday party.  Mr Kajani then said, is this Colin Anderson, your husband?  Jenni and I couldn’t believe it!! So our Colin is known in Malawi for his support of Mary’s Meals.  Fantastic!
We have arranged to visit Mr. Kajani and Joe Gibben at the Mary’s Meals office in Blantyre next week.  It should be an interesting visit and hopefully  we will learn even more. 

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