In the summer of 2014, a number of young people from Carluke, together with their leaders spent two weeks in Malawi. While there, they worked on building projects, visited Harrogate House a childrens' home run by the charity Open Arms Malawi. The trip was made possible through the generous donations from families, church family and friends.
The first week was spent in Blantyre. The group's task was to repaint a foster house and that of the house mother. Each day they arrived early, worked hard painting inside and out and were treated to lovely local food all cooked on an open stove in the garden as they were decorating the kitchen. It was difficult for the young people to understand such good things could be prepared on a simple wood fire! When they had finished, the house looked really good and it was hard to believe that paint could make such a difference.
The second week saw them demolish then rebuild a house! The original house was built of mud, had a straw roof and came down in under 15 minutes! The new house is made with bricks, has a concrete floor and a metal roof! A bit like moving from a bed-sit to a detached house. Foundations were dug then up went the walls, all under the careful tutorship of a skilled team of local men.
When they set off back home, the team were able to leave money for another house to be built, money for 10 children to go to school for the next 2 years, money for a young man to go to university this year, money for a school to get new floor and blackboards, money for the church they attended to get its roof out on its new building, and money to begin the establishing a secondary education fund for children in Open Arms who are able to go to secondary school.
So the money donated went a long way. It has been put to good use and children and adults in Malawi send a huge big Zikomo (Thank you!) to all who helped.