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Combating Malaria in Malawi 

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The Hunger Project has been working with partner organisations in Malawi to combat the spread of malaria since 2011. 

Malaria remains one of the world’s leading killers. According to the World Health Organization, it claims the life of one child every two minutes. Progress has been made in limiting the scope of the disease in Africa. However, climate change is expanding the range of malaria-carrying mosquitoes, putting populations at risk that haven’t previously been exposed. 

Currently, 57% of malaria fatalities are children younger than five years old. Children who are malnourished are at the highest risk of life-threatening complications.  

As part of the Majete Malaria Project, Animators (local volunteer leaders) in 118 villages have been trained by The Hunger Project. They conduct malaria prevention workshops, improve houses to reduce mosquito bites indoors, and train community health workers on the methods of malaria transmission. 

For maximum impact, The Hunger Project-Malawi has partnered with UNICEF on the sale and distribution of low-cost, anti-malarial bednets within THP’s Epicentre communities. In 2018, 13,857 malaria-preventing bednets were distributed. 

What does Unlock mean?

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Our Unlock program is not your standard leadership immersion program – it is so much more! We’ll let some of our immersion program Animators share their experience in their own words.

U – Unlimited potential

“It was an experience that grew me in so many ways, a safe place to discover my full potential.”

– Prue Aja

N – New possibilities 

“The program is both humbling and inspiring. You get to see first-hand how the money raised is used, and what a tremendous difference your effort can make in rural communities. It will change the way you see the world. An opportunity like this does not come around often – if ever – so you’d be crazy not to take it.”

– Joe Leech

L – Leadership in action

“The program reaffirmed what I think a true leader is. It has shown me the strength and power of leadership no matter where you’re from, where you are or where you’re going.”

– Lauren Johnson

O – Opportunity to redefine your purpose

“THP offers an opportunity of a lifetime to learn from inspiring individuals from all facets of life with one thing in common – change your mindset and you can achieve anything! A key lesson which has given me purpose both professionally and personally.”

– Iman Hark

C – Courageous conversations 

“Being in the villages and seeing how people live at a variety of stages of development allowed me to see, feel, smell and listen to the conditions THP village partners live in.”

– Amanda White

K – Knowledge is power

“I found this program incredibly grounding, transportive and enlightening – I learnt as much from the group as I did from the village partners and for that I’m truly grateful.”

– Georgie Owen

The Unlock leadership immersion program is heading to Malawi in November, 2019. This is your opportunity to learn from the most unlikely leaders ending hunger in their villages. Find out more.

5 things Tim discovered in Malawi

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This is not the usual blog post you see here on The Hunger Project Australia’s website. I’m writing to share with you what I learned in the village classroom in Malawi when I travelled there on a THP leadership immersion program. 

My name is Tim Allen, and I went into the experience thinking, “What could I possibly learn from people living in dusty, remote villages in Malawi? What could I get from this experience that would really make a difference to my son, my workplace and my community?”

That said, I was also excited to explore a new country and connect with new people. I was hoping I could experience moments that I could share with my family and friends, and get a better understanding of the world that we live in.

What I experienced was this and so much more than I could ever have imagined.

I discovered:

1. To be comfortable with the unknown

Going into the program, I was anxious and uncertain about what would unfold. I had some fears about what I’d see and do – I simply didn’t know what to expect. But when I arrived, the warmth and openness from the people of Malawi put me at ease.

2. How to be resilient in the face of uncertainty  

I met people living in chronic hunger and I saw that, with resilience and vision, people could be empowered to lift themselves out of hunger. I arrived back in Australia at time of significant change and disruption in my life. Drawing on the resilience of people I met in Malawi, I knew that whatever was thrown at me I could embrace.

3. The importance of being present in every moment  

In Malawi, I discovered the genuine benefits of having a beginner’s mindset and the power of being present in every interaction. Now, with my one year old son, I focus on staying ‘in the moment’ and being intentional when we are playing. This has enabled me to better understand his personality and development. As a result I think I’m becoming a better dad. I’ve carried these learnings over to my work life and relationships with colleagues too.

4. What it means to be a global citizen 

I want to be accountable to the people I met in Malawi. The most impactful and frankly easiest thing I can do is to invest monthly, which I’m able to do through workplace giving. It allows me to give small amounts often. I believe that investing in others is a way for that we can improve our collective wellbeing – irrespective of the place you call home.

5. That every conversation is an opportunity for growth 

I witnessed THP Malawi Country Director Rowlands Kaotcha expertly turn each conversation into a moment to shift an individual’s mindset and create opportunities for personal growth. Now, I’m taking this opportunity to ask you – what could be possible for you? The Hunger Project’s next leadership immersion program called Unlock is going to Malawi in November, and I can honestly say you won’t regret going on it! Go and do it, and you’ll learn how to be a better partner, a better colleague, a better friend and a better you.

Esme’s vision of becoming a home owner

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Esme from Malawi

Esme lives in a small, rural village in Eastern Malawi with her four children. She is a farmer and the sole breadwinner of her family. Esme’s family live in a one-bedroom dung hut – and that’s how she thought it would be for the rest of their lives.

Then, in 2012, everything changed for Esme.

After participating in The Hunger Project’s unique Vision, Commitment, Action workshop, Esme created a vision of building a new, bigger, safer home for her family – a dream so many of us can relate to.

Her first actions towards her vision included applying for a loan through The Hunger Project’s microfinance program, and attending training on improved, modern farming techniques.

As a result, she was able to yield more than enough crops from her farm to feed her family and have enough left over to sell so that she could buy bricks for her new home, and pay for schooling for her children.

“My farming is a key source of income as it allows me to support my children’s education. I’m confident that I can send my children to school because I’m a farmer,” Esme said.

It took 3 years, but Esme was persistent, resilient and resolutely committed to her vision. By 2015, she was able to start construction on her new dream home and 2 years later Esme added a tin roof to the house. This tin roof was proof to her and others that she had made it! (Thatched roofs are common but leak in the rainy season). She even saved up enough money to install solar panels on her roof and run a small AM/FM radio through the power. Her dream home was now a reality.

Esme out the front of her home

She didn’t stop there. Not content with her dream home, and being able to feed her family and send her 4 children to school, Esme wanted to develop herself: she decided to get an education. She successfully balanced her farm work, family life and school work to graduate and is now looking to start a career as an accountant. 

“If you work hard in school you can become a professional, and when you are educated you make better decisions,” Esme said.

Now living as a successful, single woman, Esme has had a number of male suitors asking for her hand in marriage. Being an educated, financially independent woman, she has happily refused them all!

“I am grateful to The Hunger Project because I’m able to live free from hunger. My children have gone to school and I am now educated,” she said.

Take action for women like Esme

  1. Share Esme’s story on social media
  2. Join us in Malawi to learn from women like Esme
  3. Invest now in people with a one-off or monthly donation

Meet Sipho from Kachindamoto

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Sipho is from The Hunger Project’s Kachindamoto Epicentre community, Malawi where he lives with his wife and 5 children.

In 2015 Sipho received his first farm input loan from The Hunger Project. The then participated in agriculture training through programs available at the Kachindamoto Epicentre. From this training Sipho was able to harvest 50 bags of maize and selling 25 of them back to his local community, returning him a profit and enabling him to buy an iron roof for his home.

In 2016 Sipho took out another loan enabling him to harvest 55 bags and sell 30. From this sale he was able to purchase an ox cart. He now hires out this card to his local community and it provides him with a regular income. Sipho has decided that he won’t need any more loans from The Hunger Project because he now has a regular income and has the skills to grow and harvest maize himself.

Sipho now plans to buy a new motorcycle with the income he earns from farming and hiring out his ox cart.

There are many ways you can partner with people like Sipho:

Describe your experience on a THPA immersion program…

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The Hunger Project asked people to describe their experiences on one of our leadership immersion programs in three words.

This is what they said… 

Join The Hunger Project’s Unlock leadership immersion program is heading off to Malawi in November. You too can be revitalised, ignited and excited – Find out more about Unlock. 

Filmed by Prue Aja.

Mpingo Epicentre makes history

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The Hunger Project’s Mpingo Epicentre community is the third community in Malawi to reach self-reliance. What’s most exciting about this news is that all three of these communities in Malawi have been funded by Australians.

The 11,835 people of Mpingo have partnered with The Hunger Project since 2003 – and with the Eureka Benevolent Foundation since 2015.

There are 3 criteria an Epicentre must achieve in order to be declared self-reliant. Mpingo has achieved all three of them with flying colours:

1) The first criteria required is to have legal recognition as a community development organisation in their own right (separate to The Hunger Project).

2) The second criteria required is a title deed for the property on which the Epicentre building is constructed.

3) The third criteria required is to have a minimum self-reliance score of 80% based on their achievements on 53 measures.

Their future: As a result, the community declared themselves self-reliant, and Then Hunger Project is able to withdraw – and focus our attention on bringing other communities to self-reliance.

Results at Mpingo

Since reaching self-reliance Mpingo has achieved some amazing results across the board in terms of health, education and community engagement.

95% of births are attended by a licensed health care professional.

94% of households have at least one literate person.

90% of farmers are using improved farming methods.

88% of individuals are aware of their HIV status.

84% of children age 4 to 18 are attending school.

84% of individuals now believe they have the ability to implement change.

You can read more about the Mpingo Epicentre and much more in our 2017 Annual Report.

Malawi to end child marriages

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The country with one of the highest rates of child marriages has taken a major step to end the practice by adopting a constitutional amendment that raises the minimum age of marriage from 15 to 18 years-old. 

In a major win for young girls all across the continent, on 14 February the Malawi Parliament took a landmark decision towards advancing gender equality by banning child marriage in the country. Unanimously the Parliament of Malawi adopted a constitutional amendment that raises the minimum age of marriage from 15 to 18 years, for both girls and boys. The amendment aligns the Constitution with the 2015 Marriage, Divorce and Family Relations Act enacted by the Parliament.

Each year around 15 million girls will be married before they turn 18. The Hunger Project and 0ur partners have been a strong advocate for an end to child marriage

According to the UN, half of the girls in Malawi are often married before the age of 18 and teen pregnancies contributing to 20-30 per cent of maternal deaths in the country. The practice of child marriage locks girls into a cycle of poverty, with many forced to leave education after they marry, rendering girls more vulnerable to violence.

The new reform aligns the Constitution with Malawi’s international and regional obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and others, including the Sustainable Development Goal 5 on gender equality.

Your investment can help bring an end to child marriage. Donate today. 



Meet Dennis

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Before The Hunger Project came to his community, Dennis was living in severe hunger.

“Sometimes I found small jobs to do in exchange for food. Sometimes I would have to beg for food. Sometimes I would have to steal from my neighbours. Often, I would have to fall asleep without eating. I nearly died of hunger,” Dennis said. 

His life was transformed because someone like you invested in him. Dennis attended farming technique workshops set up by The Hunger Project in his community of Champiti. By applying what he learned, he tripled the yield of his family’s farm. His family now have enough food for the entire year and even have some produce left over to sell locally.

Thanks to entrepreneurship training and a microfinance loan he received from The Hunger Project, Dennis and his wife Bernadette are now the proud owners of a grocery store.

“I am transformed… My three-year-old son Cheos eats three times a day, every day. He has never slept on an empty stomach,” Dennis said.

Right now, there are people who are living in severe hunger and urgently need your support. Please make a tax-deductible donation before June 30 and partner with people like Dennis. Your investment will make sure people, families and communities can achieve their vision of ending poverty and hunger.





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Sara knows the heartache of poverty and hunger all too well. It used to be a daily struggle to provide her two children with even one meal a day.

Too often they had to go without. The small income she earned from her fritters business was simply not enough to buy food. The family lived in small mud hut. When it rained the thatched roof leaked.

The microfinance loan and skills training she received from The Hunger Project changed her life. She took out a small loan and used it to grow her business. With the profits from her business she has been able to build a brick house with a tin roof and a small shop inside, buy a mobile phone and start a small pig farm.


Sara has also started a sarong business. She travels by bus to the nearest town to collect products for her shop and sarongs to sell in her village.

Sara can now feed her children three meals a day and send them to school. She is grateful for the support she has received and is dedicated to sharing what she has learned with others in her community.