Our Work in Malawi
The Life Sowing Training School, our vocational training center, has graduated over 10,000 students with over 80% retaining income-earning jobs today. In a nation facing rates of 15% unemployment, this is a testament to applicable skills training. Hundreds of teenage prostitutes and street kids are given the opportunity to learn a trade that keeps them from living lives of crime just to survive. The school is the heartbeat of our organization – renewing hearts and minds.
We developed our Social Outreach Program when the Zimbabwe Ministry of Social Welfare began sending destitute individuals (from the elderly and disabled to infants and street kids) to our doorstep in Chiredzi. Our outreach program is loosely structured in order to meet the various needs of diverse groups of people. From providing school fees for children being raised by their grandparents to feeding, clothing, and providing medical treatment for infants, street kids, the disabled, and the elderly, the outreach program operates to strengthen our extended community.
In addition to CLI’s Zimbabwe facilities, we have also operated various feeding initiatives, including a seven-year feeding program during one of the nation’s worst recorded droughts. Over 60,000 people, mostly children under the age of five, were given a nutritious meal every single day.
Ranked by the United Nations as one of the poorest developing countries in the world, Malawi’s government and people remain heavily reliant on foreign aid to meet their basic needs. With seasons of drought affecting agricultural resources, a lack of education and healthcare hindering development, and an adult HIV/AIDS prevalence rate of 12% killing off family breadwinners and robbing children of their mothers, fathers, and caretakers, Malawi is in a perpetual cycle of poverty. In addition, most of the scarce healthcare facilities are located within the cities, but 85% of the population resides in rural areas, forcing the majority of the people to walk great distances for basic medical assistance. This situation can cause a minor injury or illness to become a major threat to survival.
Child Legacy International has been working in Malawi since March of 2008 with the top priority of building a healthcare facility for a grossly underserved rural area outside of the capital city. What began as untamed acreage is taking shape and changing thousands of lives in the process. Standing 15 ft. high with over 7,800 square feet of treatment space, our two-ward facility — the McGuire Wellness Center — has brought primary healthcare services to over 50,000 people since the doors opened in July of 2012.
The maternity ward contains areas tailored specifically for expectant mothers and labor and delivery: a prenatal room, antenatal room, two delivery rooms, two bathrooms, dispensary and supply room, office, and three private waiting rooms for women going into labor.
Inside the main wing of the center are a triage area, pharmacy, store room, two treatment rooms, laboratory, sluice room, bathroom, and a two-bed room for critically ill patients awaiting transport to the nearest hospital. The maternity wing includes rooms for prenatal care, labor and delivery, and postnatal care, as well as a nurse’s office, sluice room, storeroom, three bathrooms, a triage room, and a supply closet. A large classroom connects the two wards and serves the community by housing health and hygiene classes, providing immunization for under 5′s, and teaching HIV/AIDS awareness programs.
Located off of the electricity grid, our Malawi project site is powered completely by renewable energy sources.
Child Legacy has recruited an outstanding Health Program Manager to oversee the operations of our wellness center, and our Chief Clinical Officer is one of only 8 physicians in all the nation that can perform fistula repair – a vital surgical procedure for women. We have also hired the following healthcare staff for the outpatient dispensary:
- 3 Clinical Officers
- 4 Nurses
- 4 Hospital Attendants
- 4 Patient Attendants
- 3 Admitting/Processing Clerk
This group of dedicated men and women have all indicated their desire to serve the rural poor despite the sacrifices they make to do so.
Malawi’s overwhelming need for healthcare services is recognized worldwide. This need is what makes the McGuire Wellness Center such an invaluable facility both to the catchment area surrounding the project site and to the nation as a whole. For every 100,000 live births in Malawi, 807 mothers die as a result of pregnancy and childbirth related causes. The World Health Organization (WHO) indicates that one child out of every eight born in Malawi will die before they reach the age of five, most from preventable or treatable illnesses.
Every day, 16 women die in childbirth or from pregnancy related complications. WHO estimates that 25% of maternal mortality cases are a result of postpartum hemorrhage. With 87% of all births taking place in rural areas, expanding the McGuire Wellness Center into a full-fledged Regional Hospital would most certainly improve the number of mother and child fatalities in Malawi.
We have a signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Baylor
College of Medicine for participation in our Maternal Health programs, as well as ongoing collaborations with Ohio State University and the University of North Carolina. We have also obtained a signed MOU from the Malawi government in regards to our current healthcare facility and endorsements that indicate their willingness to cooperate with Child Legacy initiatives. With government support, and alliances with respected medical institutions, we are in the process of constructing a fully functional OR (surgical ward) and Mother/Child Ward on our project site.
Our CLI family of donors has been a tremendous blessing to all we have accomplished so far for the Malawi Wellness Center… and this is just the beginning. Partner with us today and BE THE DIFFERENCE!