Reaching classrooms in Malawi

7th May 2021 | Blog

Since February, we’ve been working with international conservation NGO African Parks to provide high quality, carefully selected books to in the schools around the Nkhotakota Wildlife Reserve in Malawi.

Thanks to the support of players of People’s Postcode Lottery, 71 schools have now received an average of 260 books each as well as handwashing stations. We’ve also been able to train local teachers in how to use these books to enrich classroom learning, improving the quality of education students receive. 

The books will be used to improve reading culture among not only students and teachers but whole communities on the borders of Nkhotakota Wildlife Reserve. We heard from a few of the students and teachers who told us their thoughts upon the arrival of the books:

This book donation is not just to the school, they will be used by our community at large. We sometimes have college students who come to borrow books and read in the evening and over the weekend. The books will go a long way.

Osward Chimwaye, Headteacher, Chilumba Primary School.

One of the schools showed us their newly stocked bookshelf

These books will help me learn how to read quickly. Our parents don’t know how to read, they can’t teach us, there’s nowhere where we can learn how to read except books.

Luciano, Jiti Primary School.

“I would like to learn about the world in the books, especially past events which I feel can only be found in books.” – Isabel, Katozi Primary School.

“After school we really don’t have anything to do, we will be coming to school to read books.” – Happiness, Chilimani Primary School.

“Our children will gain more knowledge in and outside class through reading these books. Even their English writing and speaking skills will improve.” – Headteacher Kabiza Primary School.

Students were happy to receive the new books

“The books will expose me to many things of the world. I want to learn more about human biology because I want to become a doctor.”

Martin, Mtanda Primary School.

“The books will help students to have time to read and engage in playful behaviours.” – Young Chirambo Mwale, Headteacher, Ndonda Primary School. 

“The books will enhance reading culture here at the school. Students will be able to discover new things they didn’t know about in the books.” – Samuel Jasi, Teacher, Mtambo Primary School.

We look forward to speaking with the schools around the reserve again in the future and to hear the impact the books have had after months of use. 

We would also like to thank players of People’s Postcode Lottery for funding our work with Africa Parks in Malawi.

Images provided with thanks to African Parks.