Malawi is once again facing food shortages due to droughts in some areas and floods in others. The World Food Programme, Christian Aid, Oxfam etc. help where they can but these large agencies have great difficulty reaching remote villages which have no road access.
In April Marion and Kevin Bickerstaffe accompanied John to a very remote village – Zenda. The chief and villagers told them of the village’s forthcoming food crisis. The Bickerstaffes decided to help and bought maize to send up to Zenda, where it was shared out among the most needy families.
Marion returned to the UK and raised over £2,000. In Malawi, 150 x 50kg bags of maize was sourced from a large farm and a village which had excess. The chief at Zenda was able to identify and give tickets to families in his community who needed maize. When the Raven Trust team visited Malawi in the autumn, they collected and transported the maize to Zenda where it was distributed to the familes who had been given the tickets – 2 bags to each family. Chief Zenda and his people gave a very heartfelt vote of thanks to Marion and Kevin. Their gift (and the funds raised from the folk from Orkney to Plymouth, including the communities of Collace, Woodside and Burrelton ) ensures that, not only will families survive the “hungry season” this year, but they will also have enough energy to prepare the ground and plant next year’s maize.