Teddy bear linking Malawi and Scotland

A travelling bear and a welcome hand …

Starting young takes on a whole new meaning for some East Kilbride nursery pupils who are showing how successful fundraising should be done…

A first visit to Malawi in 2013 inspired Andy Kerr, CEO of our long-term partner Sense Scotland, to further expand the work of our programmes in the country. These programmes work with families, schools and communities to promote equal access to education and community acceptance for deaf and hearing impaired children.

Kafukule community, Malawi

Learners welcomed by Kafukule community

Back in 2013, we reported on a visit to a special community, Kafukule, which embraced diversity and embodied the change in cultural acceptance for hearing impaired learners. Andy returned to the UK and took on the challenge to find new donors to assist the people of this community in Northern Malawi on their own terms.

A visit and a talk to the children, parents and staff at the Ballerup Nursery Centre in Scotland’s East Kilbride provided a winning formula.

A helping hand

The nursery held a number of fundraising events and activities, which included selling home-made goods and second-hand items, and raised an astonishing £1,132! All this, and the offer to repeat their fundraising skills this year to support our work.

Gift from Scottish nursery to Malawian community

Andy with a gift from the nursery

These funds and other personal donations from Scotland now total over £2,000, and all of this will go directly to support the construction of a dormitory block for deaf and hearing impaired learners at Kafukule.

The community has already donated the land for the building, started clearing the site and made hundreds of bricks ready for the construction. This will offer safe and clean housing for learners who are not from the community, but who have been taken in and looked after so that they can benefit from the specialist teaching offered there.

Ballerup Nursery Centre also sent out some toys and learning resources as a personal gift, which were warmly welcomed and caused great interest in Kafukule. In return, one of the hand-made bricks was presented to Andy to bring back to Scotland during his follow-up visit last year.

We will keep you updated on the progress of the building, but thanks go once again to the pupils, parents and staff at the nursery who prove you are never too young to give a helping hand!

Hand-made bricks in Malawi

Andy receiving one of the bricks made to construct the dormitory block for deaf and hearing impaired learners

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