Newsletter July 2017

Year after year - 8 years of Kunyumba

A birthday that makes a difference

It is – like always – a big pleasure to see the project and every single child grow and to accompany this progress. This joy has to be shared, with all people, who support the project, wherever they live – and with the people at Kunyumba in Senga Bay, Malawi.

Every year in the dry season a special event is celebrated in Kunyumba: The project´s birthday.

Weeks before Peter and the staff start to plan a colourful and creative program for and with the children. This year they could hardly decide between theatre, challenge games, dance, music, picnic, fun games, songs, story telling or even more dance…. In the end it was a mix of singing, playing, dancing and as a special highlight live-music from the Kunyumba band: Together with the children, Innocent, a very musicial staff member, created instruments from trash . Days before the celebration you could hear the loud and very rhythmical sound over the beach and lake Malawi. Curious inhabitants stood at Kunyumba´s wall, listening to the music and applauding. Innocent himself played proudly his guitar, a gift from a Korean tourist last year.

At the birthday party an excited and solemn mood was in the air. The building, the garden and the big trees were decorated with balloons (from Germany) and toilet papers (instead of festoons), the children painted the walls and bricks with coloured chalk, the barbecue (a big half iron barrel) was lighted and the “banquet” prepared (rice, potato salad, tomato sauce, vegetable and eight divided chicken). All eyes were glowing. At 12 o’clock both night guards appeared dressed up in their best clothes. Of course, they are also a part of Kunyumba = family…. The eyes of the children shined more and more: Now they could wear the selfmade colourful silicone bracelets, also the new dress or new trousers with shirt or t-shirt. They were so proud in their new outfit! Like every year all children – small and big – get “new” clothes and underwear. This year I drove with Mary (17), Ellen (16) and Ulita (15) to the second hand shed in Salima, the closest town. It was hot inside the building and ear-splitting music came out of the speakers – at the end an individual ensemble for everyone of the 32 children was found. Last but not least 64 new pants – for everyone two – in gaudy colours if available. The small children got confused what to show at first, constantly they showed their coloured pants with a loud “Look! Look!”. Now they can wear alternately two new pants for the next whole year (of course, one is always clean ;-))…and after one year it is time to buy a new set of clothes and underwear…

At the latest, when they all sit together at the long dining table, wearing their new clothes, singing “happy birthday” together, eat the delicious meal, you can see the gratitude of the children and staff members of Kunyumba. This project offers them protection, reliability, security, food, improvement and perspective for a better future…

Ute Reichl (vom 02.06. – 22.06.17 in Malawi)

Kunyumba e.V.
Am Beethovenpark 40
D-50935 Köln