Susan Flynn writes:
"Cyclone Freddy hit Malawi in the middle of March 2023 and lasted 3 days with torrential rain and flooding particularly in the Southern Region. Over 600 people lost their lives. 500 people were recorded as missing and 659,278 people were displaced in 10 Districts in the South. In Blantyre where the Chanasa Women live, 47,000 households had serious damage to their homes. 13 of them were Chanasa Women living in Chilomoni and Ndirande.
I met most of the women affected and learnt how their homes had been affected. Four of them had to leave their homes to live with relatives or a neighbour. One woman who is a young widow with three children ended up in a camp with her children being taken in by her uncle who lives a long distance away. Unfortunately, as all the homes are privately rented, it was outside my scope to meet all the landlords and there was insufficient finance to do the repairs. The women wanted practical help so we bought and distributed food packs for all the women: plastic sheets, blankets, plastic crockery and some sets of bed linen for the 13 women. The women were very appreciative of the help provided.
The Chifundo Appeal raised £2,488 and there is £806 left to assist the women who have left their homes or women who experience new needs with their houses needing repairs. The Chanasa Trustees will decide how best to use the funds and advise Chifundo Trustees.
I wrote to the MPs for Chilomoni and Ndirande as well as Blantyre District to raise awareness about the plight of the Chanasa Women as it is unlikely that landlords will either be able to undertake their house repairs or be inclined to do so. It seems unlikely the District will receive any funding from the Government to help landlords and their tenants but perhaps an application can be made for global funding.
Further information will be shared as it becomes available and a final report produced."
Founder of Chifundo UK and Chanasa Malawi
15th May 2023