Written by CorpsAfrica/Malawi Volunteer Mr. Chancy Simba
“Achieving victory over others in a competition or receiving a prize or reward for achievement” – that’s how the dictionary defines the word winning. According to the dictionary, most people, especially men into sports, will say that in order to win there has to be an opponent to beat. However, some of the most meaningful wins of my life were victories over no other person or team (and I have played competitive basketball for years). I can remember winning when there was no prize for performance and those are some of my most highlighted wins in life. I can tell you so many countless wins I have with CorpsAfrica during my service in Mzimba. Here are a few.
One of my first experiences of winning with CorpsAfrica occurred in April after my Grassroot Soccer Camps which involved about 130 children from around my site. I won the hearts of these children after those camps, so I call this a big win for me in Mzimba. Nearly every day, after the camps I have had many of these children greet me with a big smile and introduce me to their parents and friends. Some of these kids come and spend time at my house, help me with some chores like drawing water from the borehole, and play games and have fun together.
The fact that I’m here doing a service with CorpsAfrica at all is another win I like to count. And finding someone to work with me out here who doesn’t want anything in return. My CorpsAfrica service would not be the same if it weren’t for a Peace Corps Volunteer, Kevin. I found Kevin already here (Mzimba) and he is working on many numerous projects. We met and started working together especially on HIV/AIDS programs together with our local clinic and schools around here. Kevin is a hard-working person determined to make a difference and working hand-in-hand with him motivates and helps me to work hard. So, to work with him is a big win for me.
All my projects in my community have to go through my VDC (Village Development Committee) first, in fact all my projects come from my VDC. Be able to work, trust and be trusted, believed, and respected with these people is the most tremendous victory in my CorpsAfrica service. I’m just a young man among elders who is on the forefront together with the community leaders to bring change to thousands of lives in my community. I am so grateful for these people and I feel so special to be part of this community.
There are many numerous examples that will clarify what winning means to me, especially with CorpsAfrica. I find it hard to define winning as a way to compete with others and get a reward at the end and being in my community has helped me see that. Being able to positively achieve a lot of wins to better someone’s life every day is what is most important. I’m a grateful Volunteer and I am so thankful for the wins I’m achieving with my community through my CorpsAfrica service.