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Zomba Street Kids Inspired by Chanco Students by Lonjezo Idrissa, (Chancellor College, Malawi)

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ZOMBA STREET KIDS INSPIRED BY CHANCO STUDENTS

By

LONZEZO IDRISSA

CHANCELLOR COLLEGE, MALAWI

As one way of empowering the street kids in Zomba, Chancellor College United Nations Volunteer team in conjunction with Chancellor College Youth net and Counselling (YONECO) conducted an information session with the street kids that are cared by YONECO at its drop in centre at Mapale, Zomba.

YONECO Chairperson, Jacob Nyirongo, opened up the event by giving a brief history about YONECO and other projects that YONECO as an organisation conducts from the time it was established.

YONECO was started by a man called McBain Mkandawire. We have nursery schools for streets kids, several drop in centres for both street kids and women who just wonder along the streets. We also offer services and sessions on counselling on issues to do with HIV/AIDS. We distribute condoms. We also do village savings and loans, mental health, sporting activities and a band for the street kids” said Nyirongo.

Yankho Mwavu, one of the kids who receives care at YONECO Town Drop in Centre witnessed that YONECO assists some street kids by training them musical skills by coming up with a band that performs in different evens for profits.

Amatenga ana oyenda mu nsewu nkumawaphunzitsa zoimbaimba, amapita ku malo osiyanasiyana monga ena anadzapita ku Lilongwe kokaimba alandilako ndalama (they do pick up some street kids and train them about musical instruments, they send them to different places like others went to Lilongwe to perform and they were rewarded with some money)” said Mwavu.

Unquestionably, the Chairperson thanked the two teams for visiting them for it showed a cordial relationship which he said has been exemplary and remarkable day for the children. He further added by saying, “Let me also take this opportunity to congratulate both Chanco UN volunteers, and YONECO Chanco wing for the wonderful job you have done to visit us. We are happy because your presence will help to motivate the kids to work hard at school just to be university students like yourselves” said Jacob.

During the event, both Chanco UN Volunteers and YONECO Chanco wing interacted with the children by providing career talk and guidance on drug and substance abuse, self-motivation and education, encouraging the youths to patronise the various programs offered at the drop in centre and those offered by the ministry of health, and advocating on their rights and community participation and development. The children from the centre also performed different activities of which some of them include; plays and songs concerning rape, HIV/AIDS and education. However, the event also involved Chancellor College United Nations that distributed support materials mainly notebook for their education.

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