Monday, September 17, 2012

Tues morning September 10

In 2010, OPSEU supported the Tyanjane Centre for the Disabled in Kasungu, giving a small amount of funding to begin renovating a building to use for skills training.   This morning, our delegation was invited to tour the Centre to see what has happened from 2010 to 2012.  Recently Tyanjane has joined together with another organization, Skills for Youth Network as many of their aims are the same. Both organizations are struggling to provide necessary skills to youth and the disabled in the community.  With some funding from the Canadian High Commission, they have recently acquired some woodworking machines, welding machines and sewing machines.  However, they are a community-based organization, not an NGO with staffing etc. and it is a hard job to get these kinds of organizations off the ground.  Their many volunteers are trying hard to get the building completed so they can set up machinery and begin their skills training programs.  In the meantime, they are able to provide youth and the disabled community with meeting space and educational dialogue on all kinds of issues facing them in their community.
OPSEU meets with Tyanjane and Skills Youth Network


After our visit with Tyanjane and the Skills Youth Network we headed off to Lake Malawi, but with one stop on the way.  Eric Davis had brought a suitcase full of medical supplies with him from Canada, specifically 12 cases of syringe of different sizes, donated by health professionals in Kingston, Ontario.

The staff at St. Andrew’s Mission Hospital were very grateful.  “We know these things may seem cheap to you back in Canada, but to us they are very valuable,” said one of the administrators of the hospital.








Tues afternoon, September 11

After dropping off the supplies, we headed for the Lake again and spent a night and a morning there.  Although totally landlocked, Malawi has what is described as its “inland sea”. Lake Malawi  is a vast body of freshwater more than 500 km north to south and 80 km wide. The Lake is extraordinarily deep in the north- 2300 ft/700 m, plunging well below sea level. This reflects the enormity of the natural faulting of the Great Rift Valley, which is the origin of the Lake.

Because of its rich fish harvest, the Lake plays an important part in the economy. Fishing villages are scattered along the shore and our group watched the fishers come in with their catch.  Tilapia (Chomba) is native to Lake Malawi and is organically farmed in other parts of the world.



Lunch at Lake Malawi




Sunrise over Lake Malawi


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