Boys' School launch World Vision with Nsima Taster

June 06, 2014 at 2:31 PM

When Old Collegian and World Vision Youth Ambassador, Letitia Puni returned from a visit to Malawi, she told us how she had seen a typical day unfold for a Malawian family. They woke at 4.30am to walk for 30 minutes to collect the only water that is available to them - Letitia had visited that stream earlier and said it was filthy and almost defied belief that it was their only source of drinking water.

The children she met then walked for two hours to school while their parents worked in the fields. The family’s first meal wasn’t until later once the children were home from school and they only ate what they could grow. Like most Malawian families, they grow maize which is ground into flour and cooked with hot water. Letitia said, ‘They call it nsima. We would call it play dough.’ The family then all work in the fields until around 8pm and if there is enough food they have dinner, if not they go to sleep.

Today, Mrs Pilkington launched the World Vision Famine weekend for the Boys’ School at assembly, encouraging our boys to take part in either the 20 Hour or 40 Hour Famine. In the past, our boys have chosen to give up technology, sleep in cardboard boxes or eat only rice for the entire weekend. Whilst it may seem a small deprivation in the big scheme of things, it is a solid reminder for one weekend that conditions are very different in other parts of the world.

Following assembly, the boys were each given a ‘Malawi Taster’ – a small amount of the staple diet, ‘nsima’ to see what it looked like, what it felt like and what it smelled and tasted like. It was hard for the boys to appreciate that this tasteless, crumbly, gluey paste could be the sole source of food for each and every day with little other variety in the diet for millions of people. It gave the boys an appreciation of what it is like for the families of Malawi who are the focus of this year’s Famine fundraising.

Referring recently to the huge fundraising efforts made by our students at each of the campuses over the years, the CEO of World Vision NZ, Mr Chris Clarke said that Saint Kentigern is a school with a huge heart. This year, the funds raised by our students during the 40 Hour Famine will be split 60% to the ‘general’ World Vision fundraising and 40% to our own special project which is currently being set up by the College Service Co-ordinator, Mr Mark Robinson after a recent scoping trip to Malawi.
He, like Letitia, has seen first-hand the daily struggle for parents to provide enough food and a chance of an education for their children.

Each year we are blown away by our ability as a school to collectively raise money for World Vision and we are hoping this year will be even better. Our help, really does make a difference and like the College students who undertook the Famine two weeks ago, we encourage all our Boys’ School students to get behind this year’s Famine appeal.

Back to News List