The goal is Trade Not Aid. 'We team up with existing organisations instead of replicating...this is how we see sustainable tourism working for local Malawi communities.' Maggie, RSC's community officer, explains more about our model.

It is not just the beauty of seeing trees/vegetation and the magnificent animals in their natural habitat that will move you….it is also the wonderful works and developments of the communities you will visit when you come to Malawi. 

We have our community project partners at heart! That is why we strive to make our clients involved in a lot of exciting activities and challenges that bring about change and benefit to them and the communities of Malawi. Not only do they enhance their life experiences, they are also a great benefit to these wonderful communities. 

RSC works with three community projects in Malawi: Youth for Development and Productivity (YODEP), Nancholi Youth Organization(NAYO) and Community Initiative for Self-Reliance (CISER). We have chosen to team up with these already existing projects to avoid overlapping services. These all have a community based approach as they work together with the communities to assess, identify and plan for their unique needs. They also have great passion for sustainable development. Learn More 

2016.01 Malawi. RSC. Community Development Projects 9 CISER retouched 

Our community partners in Malawi

YODEP focuses on the needs and challenges affecting children, youth and women in Malawi. It’s goal is to see children and youth particularly the vulnerable and marginalized grow in a conducive environment necessary for their growth and development. It is located at the foothills of Zomba Plateau in Zomba,

Located in Mangochi, CISER’s mission is to enhance self-reliance among the residents of local communities as a means of contributing to national development. It’s commitment is towards the socio-economic empowerment of local people through the implementation of various demand-driven sustainable development interventions

NAYO focuses on carrying out community-based programming related to youths and HIV/AIDS. It takes a holistic approach to youth and community development, with programming related to HIV/AIDS, environmental protection, care for orphans and vulnerable children, home-based care, and sustainable income generating activities.

2016.01 Malawi. RSC. Community Development Projects 5 YODEP retouched

Our impact in Malawi through Sustainable Tourism

Over the years, there have been so many amazing developments through our linkages with our project partners. One of the developments has been through our homestay programmes. This is one of the activities that we introduced as part of community income generating activities. They are such a wonderful way to explore Malawi’s cultural aspect and a form of culturally inherited hospitality. The homestays have been really fantastic as they’ve led to exciting and totally new cultural exchange, great partnerships, new friendships, personal development and community developments. These developments have come from the income that they get from the homestay activities and also donations that they have been getting after clients have left or whilst still in the country. This tourism generated income has really helped in building sustainable solutions. Among these include electricity connection and school sponsorship. When asked about the programme, two of the homestay hosts said that they are both looking forward to more homestays and are excited to meet new/old clients and share different cultures and experiences. They said that they hope and pray RSC continues doing the homestay programme with YODEP.

Homestay Programmes

2016 Marie Anne Cristuib Homestay2

Another sustainable project we are getting involved in is the sponsorship programme. Through our clients, we have been able to come up with school sponsorship with our community project partners by linking them with our past and present clients. Through these connections and educational workshops, the following has been achieved: construction of a secondary school, construction of a science/I.T lab, Not only have students been sponsored in secondary school, some have even gone all the way to university sponsorship. To top it up, there are plans in place to have a girls dorm/hostel constructed to reduce the amount of time that girls spend in travelling long distances form their home to school. This will greatly assist in improving quality education. We eventually intend to do the same for boys hostels/dorms. 

Permaculture Training

PERMACULTURE! This great agricultural system has been introduced by Chris and Matthews from Pa Nthunzi to our community project partners through a wonderful donation from previous clients. Permaculture is an innovative framework for creating sustainable ways of living through agriculture and social design principles. The goal of this is to help communities become more sustainable and self-sufficient by getting much more out of life by using less through agriculture. Communities have been trained on how to grow food (for consumption and sale) and minimise environmental impact at the same time, hence living more sustainably. One of the trainees of this system now grows food/crops for consumption at his home. He also sells some of these crops as part of generating income. Rainbow Hope Secondary School in Mangochi has also adopted the same concept by designing gardens and planting various local trees, fruits and herbs. 

2017.11.23 YODEP centre permaculture 2

Vocational Training

Vocational training is another great development that our community project partner NAYO - is getting involved in. Such a fantastic way of sealing community leaks! The youth is being trained in various skills of plumbing, bricklaying, tailoring, designing, electrical installation and carpentry. The whole purpose is to equip them with the know-how to run their own businesses, become self-reliant and also meet job market demands. The skills they acquire are also used to do technical work in their communities. Such a great way of promoting their living standards and effecting change huh? This youth empowerment approach is simply brilliant and also sustainable. Not only are these youths being trained, they will also be certified! 

Early Learning Development Centre. Nursery education.

Through our clients, we have also managed to construct an ECD center with our project partner, YODEP. This has been a really wonderful community based project. From the word go, the community members were sensitised and provided with a platform to give their input into the project in terms of views, expectations and ideas. The center is expected to solve the problem of lack of enough classrooms in the community. This will greatly improve the quality of education for children. The center will also be used as a venue for youth meetings + community meetings, provide a platform for women empowerment interventions and a variety of child protection innovations when classes are not in session. 

2017.03.02 YODEP Main ECD Women of tomorrow

It has been so great seeing the community members take ownership of this project in terms of providing land for the construction, collecting, sourcing locally available resources/materials for the construction. The project has helped to unite them by working together as a team and the results of their togetherness. About 600 people are expected to benefit from this. 

A thank you from RSC to you...

We are so grateful to all our clients, donors, RSC/Orbis team for all the generosity, support and commitment to child development, education and helping communities in Malawi develop.

Get involved...

Interested in learning more about our partnerships and commitment to sustainable community projects? Get to know more about CISER, YODEP and NAYO. It’s time to get in touch….

Maggie's final words...

While experiencing responsible travel with us, you will also make a difference! You will get an opportunity to get involved in a lot of exciting activities and challenges that help bring about change and benefit to both you and the communities of Malawi. Not only will you enhance your life experience, you will also be of great benefit to these wonderful communities. 

The goal is “trade not aid”. 

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