Written by CorpsAfrica/Malawi Volunteer Mr. Dalitso Mndala
Growing up, I have come to realize a lot of things that have greatly changed my life. Among other things, I have realized that no one is useless in this world, and it always crushes my heart to see other people suffer when someone can do something. I came to embrace the importance of taking action to help those in need, and that’s the reason why I applied to be a CorpsAfrica Volunteer.
Fast-forward the story: here I am, a month into my service, and I am ready and glad to be here. When I arrived at my site in mid-December 2018, I was afraid of how people would receive me in their community. I couldn’t keep my fear longer because I realized that the people were friendlier than I expected.
Moreover, what got much of my attention was the way they treated me with respect. I have to admit, I have been respected much more than I have ever been in my life. This helped me to easily to ingrate with the people in the community. Most importantly, my host family gave me all the support I needed to adjust well in the community. They helped me to know more about the community and introduced me to people I was interested to know.
One of the things I have observed and learnt from my community is how hardworking the people are in their farms. Each and every morning they wake up early and go to their farms to do some work, and they are dedicated to see the job get done. Sometimes others will go for “ganyu” (piece work) for income, and they are willing to work even for less returns.
One interesting tool that I have used, which has proven to be effective in catching people’s attention, is the camera. It doesn’t matter how old a person is, but taking a picture with him/her leaves a smile on their face. The kids are my favorite, they call me uncle and are always excited whenever they see me.
I am also glad that I have volunteered to teach at the nearest primary school. I am able to appreciate the work of primary school teachers and am always happy teaching the kids in class. I hope they became influential people in their society. I am really glad that I am doing something to make other people’s lives better.