Shine Relief Trust works with vulnerable communities in Malawi providing resources and support. Basic essentials such as food, clothing, bed nets, blankets, medical support and school fees are provided to those identified by local authorities. This is a valuable part of the orphan care support network which is slowly growing in an area desperately in need of hope and God’s love; particularly for children traumatised by the loss of parents or loved ones, who are living with the effects of disease and the daily challenges of extreme poverty. Our aim is to strengthen communities, minister to the most vulnerable, provide care and education to orphaned and vulnerable children whilst working to set up and support new income generating activities, empowering women and raising awareness of children’s rights and issues of injustice, exploitation and extreme poverty.
Orphan Care Support
Without access to food, education and basic health care many children are found helpless in the villages of Kuntumanji. Although African societies have traditionally found homes for children within their own community, the sheer magnitude of the AIDS crisis has led to a number of children living in vulnerable ” Child-headed families”. Shine Relief cares for orphans and vulnerable children in various villages working closely with local communities. Shine is working hand in hand with the Social Welfare and the Area Development Committee to ensure the most vulnerable children will be supported at Shine Village.
Early Years Group
Early Childhood Development Group at Shine Village assists and cares for young children (0-5 years), particularly those children who are vulnerable, orphans and those affected by HIV/AIDS. We provide children with one meal a day and aim to provide health and development checks and ensure they will not remain affected by undernourishment. We also provide essential learning and early childhood development before children graduate to Government primary schools. Children come from villages in Kuntumanji. Taking care of young children gives their carer, who may be an older sibling, a single Mother or Grandparent, the chance to attend school or work and earn an income. In September 2016 the number of children attending rose to 120. Food supplies are currently purchased from local farmers, however, long-term supplies will come from Shine Land.
Feeding Programmes – Food millennium development goal #1
CBO Early Years groups in the community receive supplies every month to feed between 80-120 children, encouraging regular attendance and participation.
Over the past 6 years we have supported families from our community and neighbouring communities with emergency provisions to get them through the lean season. This support increased in 2015 when the nation was impacted terribly by the worst floods seen in a decade and again in 2016 during a time of severe droughts in the region.
Healthcare – Basic Health Care millennium development goal #6
Shine workers regularly assess the health and security of all the children we support, identifying urgent needs whilst providing physical, emotional and spiritual care. Shine works to raise the children’s health awareness, in particular, teaching about HIV/AIDS transmission and malaria. Shine provides assistance with transport when needed, to assist child-headed families who need to collect ARV’s or who are sick and particularly vulnerable.
Monthly household provisions, malaria prevention measures, alongside home repairs and assistance with income-generating activities such as farming, help to improve their standard of living and relieve pressure from those children who oversee their households alone.
Housing in our project area is very basic and children are unable to make the repairs needed to keep them safe and dry. Repairs are made to roofs and on occasions, we have totally rebuilt homes which were in very poor condition.
Shine is developing a complex of traditional homes at Shine Village for the most vulnerable children. See Shine Village for more information.
Education and Shine School Bursary – Education millennium development goal #2
Shine supports the payment of school fees for children and students in our project area. Provision of books, uniforms, shoes, bikes for transportation to school, solar lamps – to enable study at night, empowers young people and creates a more conducive environment towards the achievement of their goals.
Shine Village Resource Centre and farm
Built in 2014 using local resources and laborers and fitted with its own solar power system and borehole, the center is the first multifunctional space with kitchen and toilet block in the area. It stands in 8 acres of land of which 2 acres have been planted with a variety of crops including maize, pumpkins, groundnut, pigeon peas, soya bean and cassava. Moringa trees are growing well with the mango and avocado trees.
Income Generating at Shine Village
Shine Land Plans include the introduction of livestock, cash crops and also facilities for new income generating projects such as sandal making which will help sustain the care of orphans at Shine Village. Breaking the poverty cycle by offering training opportunities will help members of the community develop skills and generate the income needed to support their families.
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