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Salama African Creative Center


Site: Dzaleka Refugee Camp, Dowa, Malawi (Population: 45,000)

Volunteer: Ba, Amadou Alpha


August 2018

- March 2019

Primary sector

project cost

6,911,809 MWK

($8,533.10 USD)

People impacted

28 Directly

7000 Indirectly

UN Sustainable Development goals

Project Overview

The Salama African Creative Center Project aims to provide a safe and productive space for artistic activities. Before its construction, performers and artists operated outdoors, risking extreme heat exposure and dust inhalation. The center was constructed with four rooms, the largest being the performance hall with a capacity of 300 people. This space is used for local performances and student creative classes, but it can also be booked for events such as weddings, conferences, and training programs. The center has already been used for a UNHCR meeting, as well as a 20 week training and graduation ceremony for 101 girls and 36 boys with the Naweza Project, which falls under the Jesuit Refugee Service.

Salama Africa was involved throughout the entirety of this project. Members came to the construction site every morning to help the builders fetch water, discharge various materials, and offer support as needed. They also kept things safe and organized by looking after materials, even taking sleeping shifts at the construction site until it was completed. Community members were also closely involved with those working at the center and were in charge of supervising all the materials. When UNHCR Malawi saw the progress being made on a small budget, they contributed an additional $16,000 USD. As the primary beneficiary, Salama Africa also contributed $400 USD by paying workers, feeding the builders, and purchasing construction materials. This project is sustainable because CorpsAfrica worked with different implementing partners in the Dzaleka Refugee Camp. Many of the camp’s youth were involved, and local partners will continue to organize leadership workshops. Some organizations from outside Dzaleka will also be involved in activities at the creative center so that both parties can learn new skills.

Project Highlights

  • The Salama Africa creative center was successfully completed, providing a space for artists and students to perform and participate in creative development classes.

  • These beneficiaries include 15 students and three artists who showcased their talents.

  • Thanks to this center, it is no longer necessary for artists to work outside, decreasing sicknesses related to heat exposure and dust inhalation.

  • The center will also provide a source of income to the community through rentals to local groups.

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