University Bound

University Bound

Anesi’s husband left her for another woman to raise 5 children on her own.  Unfortunately, since marriages are not legally binding in the village, this is commonplace.  Like so many other women Anesi might have been without a home, unable to send her children to school, working in the fields each day to at least get the children a meal every other day or so.  But God… He stepped in.

Through Y-Malawi’s program to empower women and girls, God provided Anesi a sponsor.  With a little help she was able to feed her family and even send her children to school.  Incredibly, one of the girls named Falida even finished High School.  That’s something that only 3% of girls in Malawi ever do!  Falida’s dream was to go to university.

Y-Malawi had also helped Anesi start her own business.  She was saving a little money each month to send her daughter to university, but it just wasn’t enough.  God stepped in again.  He provided a sponsor for Falida.

Now this girl from the village is enrolled at Emmanuel University.  The day Falida arrived she couldn’t believe what was happening to her.  With the biggest smile ever and a little water in her eyes, she sent this message to her sponsor, “I am thinking that this is a dream.  I did not know that there was life like this.  I am so grateful for this opportunity.  The love you have shown me I do not take for granted.  I am going to work hard.  I am going to make you proud of what you have done to me. I will pray for you every day that God should bless you more.”

Sharing the love of Jesus by sponsoring a woman or girl does not just empower her, it empowers her entire family and everyone around her.  It gives hope.  Hope that there are people in the world who care.  Hope that a better future is possible.  Hope that even a girl from the village in Malawi can make a difference in the world.

There is a saying in Africa, “I am because you are.”  Y-Malawi sponsors are proving that saying to be true everyday.

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Hand to Hope

Hand to Hope

What is the difference between a hand up and a handout?  The answer is hope.  Hope that you will no longer depend on someone else to feed your family.  Hope that you will be able to send your children to school.  Hope that you are not condemned to a life of poverty.  Hope in a better future.

Economic Empowerment is working.  Here are three stories of proof.

Rhoda is young.  She is still in High School, but she had dreams of starting a business to help support her family.  With the help of Y-Malawi’s Economic Empowerment program and her mother and aunt she has done just that.  Now her new store is earning money that can help pay for her school fees and feed the family.  From Rhoda, “I am very grateful for the business opportunity.  I believe this will help my family to feed us and give us some basic needs as we go to school unlike before, when we were starving and unable to go to school.”

Asumani graduated from the Y-Malawi Vocational Training Center in Carpentry.  Having his own shop was only a dream before.  Now he is making furniture for local preschools. He said, “Thank you Y-Malawi, I am very grateful for the training and start-up capital, I will soon be independent and be able to support my family financially.”

Raja also graduated from the Vocational Training Center, but in Tailoring.  His new business has started and is doing so well that he has now expanded to selling tomatoes and other vegetables along the side of the road near his shop.  He is planning to expand even further with his profits. You can sense the gratitude in his words, “Thank you Y-Malawi for showing me a way to my future. I will not be the same. I am working hard to grow my business and become a source of hope job to others in the community.”

There are so many yet to help.  Thank you Y-Malawi family for opening your hearts to help those who need only a hand up to have hope.

Hope is Contagious!

Hope is Contagious!

In Ecclesiastes 4:9 we read, “Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil.”  So, here is a question.  If two are better than one, what could a group accomplish?  American Author Sarah Strohmeyer wrote, “The power of women united, I am again reminded, is an invincible thing.”  This story is proof.

During 2020 women participating in a Y-Malawi Change Me program decided as a group, to grow mushrooms.  Mushrooms do grow in Malawi, but they have never been grown in this district, and certainly never as a cash crop.  These women were not deterred.  They prayed and asked God to bless their efforts, then they went to work.

They built a warming bin where they could germinate the mushrooms.  They built a hanging house where they could grow the mushrooms.  They faced some challenges in the first crop, but they kept going.  God provided,  they harvested.  The first crop quickly sold.

Now encouraged, during 2021 these women expanded their operation, growing an even bigger crop.  As word began to spread local pastors and chiefs got involved.  Each encouraged their communities to support the women.  By the close of 2021, each woman was earning her own money from this new enterprise.  That money can be used to buy food, clothes, and other items.  It can also be used to fund schooling or even another new business.

As 2022 starts these women have set aside some of their profits to expand their new business beyond mushrooms.  They are now growing other crops too, but that’s not all.  When they aren’t working on their crops, they come together to knit clothes that they also sell at local markets.

Change Me is about understanding that we can’t do much to change others in life, perhaps even our own circumstances.  What we can do is decide how we are going to react to life situations.  Just as splitting an atom releases energy, by choosing to change themselves these women have released hope and energy to others.  Many of their husbands are now pitching in to help, even coming to Bible studies.  Two other Change Me groups have now started.  Hope is contagious, but so is the power of women united.

Christmas in Africa

Christmas in Africa

If you ask, most say it is their favorite holiday.  Yet, Christmas in the villages of Malawi is very different than in the developed world.  There are no lights.  No Christmas tree.  No parades.  No Christmas movies or even shopping for gifts.

Instead of all these things Christmas in the villages of Malawi is simple.  It’s about Jesus, family, and friends.  In the village, Christian or Muslim, everyone knows Christmas is a celebration of Jesus.  They might disagree on who Jesus is, but they understand the holiday is about His birth.

To celebrate families and friends come together for a big feast.  Served that day will things like rice, potatoes, relish made from tomatoes and perhaps pumpkin leaves.  Someone might donate a goat or chicken as the center piece of the feast.  Then of course there will be plenty of Nsima, a local dish made from corn meal or cassava and boiled into a think cream of wheat like paste.  There will be no silver, no glasses, no fancy tablecloth.  In fact, there likely will be no table at all.  Gathered around a cloth spread out on the ground, God made hands to work perfectly as a spoon.

The celebration won’t end there.  There will be singing, storytelling, perhaps even a drama or two.  Everyone participates, no one is left out.  Everyone celebrates, everyone shares on this happy day.

There are many things the developed world can learn from the villages of Malawi.  What Christmas should really be about is one of them.

A Pastor in Malawi

A Pastor in Malawi

Y-Malawi just launched a new initiative called, “Walk with a Village Church in Malawi.”   Our prayer is to provide partners for 70 village churches working where 70% of the population are Muslims.  These churches need our help!

To give you an idea of who you would be partnering with, meet one Pastor Gracious.

“My name is Gracious,  I was a Muslim. One day in my village a group came with the Jesus Film. I attended without my parent’s permission.  This was the first time I heard about Jesus.  When I heard John 3:16, I knew that God loves me because of Jesus.  

When I told my parents, they were not happy. They said, “Either choose to be a Christian or Muslim.”  I chose Christian.  They forced me to leave my house and my village.  I lost everything.  No longer would my parents provide food and schooling.  My family and village no longer loved me. My situation was hard.

Since, for the last 20 years I have been a pastor.  But still there are very few Christians where I live and have my church.  In one village where I minister with my wife, there is only one family who are publicly Christians.  In spite of the obstacles, we labor for the Lord.  We have now 27 Bible studies in different villages.  Some places are dangerous.  These are remote villages and to get there we have to watch for elephants and monkeys.  Yet, I am happy that God is always by our side, he protects His children.”

It takes just $60 per month to help a pastor like Gracious.  To learn more and get involved just use click the box below.

Click here to Walk with a Village Church in Malawi

Answering the Call

Answering the Call

When Ed and Sue came to small group that night, they had no idea what they were in for.  It was just a typical gathering of about 10.  Then God showed up.  Hundreds of lives were about to be changed forever.

At this gathering there was a presentation about what God is doing in Malawi through Y-Malawi.  There were photos and stories of how God is moving in the lives of those who follow Islam.  How churches are being developed to reach out to their communities, and how women and girls are being empowered to change their future.

That night Ed couldn’t sleep.  He just kept thinking about what he had seen and heard.  The next morning, he told Sue, “We just have to do something.”  Together they decided to help fund a new roof for a clinic being built for children under 5 years old.  Several village churches had come together to build the clinic for their community, but they could not afford tin for the roofing.  Without a tin roof, and with the rains approaching, the mud made bricks could collapse as they get soaked with water.  Ed and Sue couldn’t let that happen.  They gave some money to purchase the tin needed to protect the new clinic.

When the villagers in Malawi heard about what Ed and Sue were doing, they couldn’t believe it.  Then the day came when the tin sheets arrived.  A day of celebration!  The village Chief said, “I am so happy as a chief to have received these iron sheets, by faith together with the church in our area we saw the need and we mobilized the community to do something for the under-five children which includes pregnant women as they would walk long distance to the clinic so we come up with this structure. And today that some people, that we don’t even know, that we never expected come and assist us, we thank God!”  That day they sang, they prayed, they worshiped God for what He had provided them through Ed and Sue.  After seeing the photos of the gift delivered Ed said, “It warms our hearts to see the happiness on their faces and to know that the clinic will be safe from the coming rains. We are blessed to be able to help.”

Just a small group gathering?  Not when God shows up.  That one small group has now impacted the lives of literally hundreds of children and expectant mothers.  People Ed and Sue will likely never see or know this side of heaven.  Nothing is impossible with God.  It does not matter how small the group or how small the gift.  What matters is that we do what Ed and Sue did.  That we listen to His voice and answer the call.

Click here to learn about how you can help