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Enterprise and Employment
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Annie visits Chimteka on another 2 week visit. Though extremely busy, she managed to visit both Katakumba and Chimteka sewing groups. The former had not taken off so the 2 machines were returned to the original group, where she found the machines in need of maintenance and only 2 small rolls of material but no needles or thread. Our hope of it becoming self supporting had not happened. She left funds to sort the immediate problems.
The sewing group proved so much of a success that Irene took 4 of the sewing machines to Katakumba where classes were again arranged for the women in the village.
Paul received a generous offer of a donation from a couple in Sutton for the use of the Sewing group in Chimteka. A proposal was put to them for the provision of 4 sewing machines, some bales of material and other sewing needs together with payment of a 3 month contract for the sewing instructress Eunice. This was agreed and the funds were sent to be distributed by Irene.

Annie Bowen Wright is on another 3 week visit to Chimteka, armed with 2 new laptops, bought reconditioned fron Oxfam, to complement, the existing one. This as well carrying much needed medical equipment. It is hoped this will facilitate computer teaching for the Youth. However, the people in Chimteka will have to organise it themselves. Dan left explicit instructions and trained someone for this purpose whilst in Chimteka, but this has not been acted upon, to date.

When our new VM, Irene Westbury arrived, she was greeted with the very creative, end products of this group, including the mending and making clothes. It also provided a gathering point and sense of community for the women. She said that Eunice had carried on teaching the group for 10 months after the termination of the agreement. It was agreed that funds should be sent for Irene to organise a contination of this wor

Sewing Group
CCS funded the tailor in Chimteka, Eunice, to train a women's group in sewing and other handcraft for a period of 3 months, 2 half-days a week, and also provided all the necessary equipment. When our new VM, Irene Westbury arrived, she was greeted with the very creative, end products of this group, including mending and making clothes. It also provided a gathering point and sense of community for the women. She said that Eunice had carried on teaching the group for 10 months after the termination of the agreement Youth Group
Members of the Youth Group have received training in Early Childhood development (ECD) from the government. They are going to be involved in the CBCC during term time. Up to May, the Youth Club were given an allowance, equivalent to 40 per month for their activities.

Dan is writing proposal documents to give training and skills to the community. He is concentrating on the areas of computers and IT (particularly aimed at the Youth), sewing, knitting and crochet with business skills included.
However, the funding of this will be difficult.

The chiefs and the entire community were invited to witness the colourful ceremony when Sara Oddo from the U.S. Embassy decreed that the Maize Mill Engine was officially opened and handed it over to the Chimteka community. Sara and Frank, the Special Project Assistant for the Self-help Section, were very pleased with their reception in Chimteka and with the programme of events. There was much dancing and jubilation.

Slideshow of the Handover Ceremony - click manually to forward pictures
Motorcycle Ambulance
Funded the motorcycle training and driving tests for 7 people from the community.

Complete renovation of the maize mill
After the fitting of the new engine, personnel were hired to run the mill: 2 full-time and 1 part-time employees.The mill is now capable of grinding maize for a wide area and staff are need also to charge for these services.

Facilitated a workshop to make furniture from cardboard. Those attending were a mixture of disabled and youth, and most of items constructed are known as Assistive Cardboard Equipment.
The application by Christi for a grant through the Peace Corps to provide a new maize mill for grinding maize in Chimteka has been accepted. This is wonderful news as villagers have to travel large distances for this service. Also it is a very good income generating business.
A person has been identified within the community who could train people in sewing skills.The sewing machine is being renovated for this purpose.
Six people from the community received a week's training on driving the new motorcycle ambulance. The instructor belonged to the Eranger group. It is the intention that they may later obtain a driving licence.

Maize is collected and brought to the maize mill as the engine starts, but operation will not start until structures are in place to make sure that the mill is properly managed.
Sylvester has completed work on the grinding mill engine. It has been a big job with a complete engine refurbishment and it was good to hear it back in operation.
A doll making workshop took place in the hall, as the Social Welfare Office is trying to reduce the dependence on poorly constructed (Chinese) manufactured toys.
The disabled group have constructed a pig khola (house) and organized a feeding regime without any outside assistance. It is hoped that the pigs will breed and the piglets will be distributed within the Parents of Disabled Children Malawi (PODCAM) group.
The community Hall has been selected to be used for 13 days of training care givers for CBCCS across Mchinji, by the District Assembly and UNICEF. This brings in revenue for the CBO of 340,000 Mkw (1,700), which is a first of its kind, and the CBO have entrusted CCS to open a bank account for them. This is significant as it allows the CBO the opportunity to develop some programs without any outside assistance.
The provision of input capital for Income Generation Activities is being considered so that the people of Chimteka can become self-sustaining in the future. It is hoped to provide opportunities for jobs in the locality. For example:

Nuts and bananas are sold for cash

Completion of the preparations for the Chicken Khola project, which the community will manage, to produce eggs from 120 layer chickens onsite. They would sell the eggs at usual market price and within three months it is hoped they will be making enough money to cover the running costs of the project, e.g. chicken feed.

Create opportunities in the area to develop businesses by extending electrification by solar energy; operating maize mills; growing garden produce etc.

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