Summer is finally here and BeeHive's volunteers have been brainstorming ideas to help this very special school on the other side of the world.
Currently, BeeHive's buildings are under construction with only 1/3 left to complete! With some classrooms still under construction, the completed classrooms are being shared. The school day is split into two shifts, with the younger students taking class in the morning and the older ones in the afternoon. This is working so far, but it's taking a substantial toll on the teachers and staff and BeeHive is anxious to finish construction. Two long-time supporters of BeeHive School - Katy and Abe - are dedicating their entire summer to help BeeHive complete construction.
Katy and Abe are taking a break from life as usual and hitting the road in the name of adventure and philanthropy. The adventure will involve pedaling and camping through Croatia, Italy, Hungary, Austria, Germany, Switzerland, and Holland on a tandem bicycle. They're hoping to raise awareness and funds for BeeHive School - a primary school in Mzuzu, Malawi. Malawi is located in South Eastern Africa and is one of the poorest countries in the world.
Katy and Abe are planning to ride 3000 miles and their goal is to raise $1 per mile.
They are currently in Italy and have been enjoying centuries old ruins, gelato, vineyards, and pasta. You can dive into their week-by-week adventures on their personal blog:
You can also see where they've been and where they're headed on their bike tour through this really cool map complete with photos and posts. Katy and Abe are currently in Italy and making their way to Hungary.
Thank You for supporting BeeHive School and Katy and Abe on their marvelous adventure! Happy riding to all this summer!
( p.s. Niall Dorey, the founder and director of BeeHive School, has been working hard to get ADSL internet installed, so that he can send more photo and video updates for us all to enjoy. We're hoping to have more photos of construction by the end of the summer. If you are headed to Malawi this summer - then why not take advantage of the opportunity to spend a couple of days at BeeHive and help us collect some photos and videos of BeeHive School. You can take advantage of your time in Northern Malawi to also visit Lake Malawi and Nkhata Bay - I'm sure Niall has some recommendations for fun spots off-the-beaten track. )
The vocational training aspect of the Out of School Adolescents project partnership between ASAP and Catholic Relief Services had budget cuts. Community Facilitators were hired to give vocational skills training in carpentry, hair dressing and sewing. These facilitators were either school teachers or qualified practicing individuals from the communities where the project clusters are formed. Training was localized in the selected clusters to meet with the budget size. The training had been initially planned to run for 21 days but later during implementation the days were reduced to14 days to suit the budget size even with the Global Giving funding.
This approach is very suitable for our youth and adult Internal Savings and Lending (ISAL) members, as since 2002 they have been asking for skills training to boost their income generating activities (IGAs) by running them more skillfully. We have already started receiving request to expand this training to the community members(ISAL and non ISAL members ), local stakeholders and local schools where the trainings were held or those community members who heard about the trainings. The training was very practical and the trained youths have started to employ the skills they gained in their IGAs. The only limitation in this intervention was enough resources to buy start up kits for those who received the training.
Dear BeeHive Supporters,
Sorry for taking so long to post a new update, but communication with our field partners has been minimal, since the internet connection has been down for Niall. A new connection should be established soon, so we'll have pictures and hopefully even video headed your way soon.
We recently sent over $1000 USD, which at the current currency exchange rate works out to about 131000 kwqacha. These funds came in the nick of time as construction at BeeHive School is still in full-swing. They are working on the administration block, library, and computer room. The funds went straight into cement, which is surprisingly expensive in Malawi. Since Malawi is an under-developed nation certain materials which we take for granted in the United States are actually quite expensive. As a point of comparison, $100 USD can buy you 6000 bricks in Malawi, but it will only buy you a few bags of cement. Bricks are locally produced and there is a large market, therefore they are competitively priced. Cement, wood, and glass are harder to come by and thus more costly.
Niall has taken some video with the small HD camcorder Katy, Spencer, and Eva bought him as a Christmas gift. Since his internet connection is so slow we can't transfer the files online. We have sent him a few USB memory flash drives and he will be sending those our way soon. Unfortunately it can take anywhere from 1-3 month to mail packages from Mzuzu. But you can look forward to those videos in the coming months!
I didn't want to leave you all hanging, so I have included some photos from Troy Smith who visited the school a few months ago.
In some other news - a few of our volunteers are planning fundraisers in the form of garage sales soon when the spring comes, so if you're interested in hosting one contact us at email@example.com for suggestions.
Niall also reports that the school is looking fantastic and he's excited to upload photos once he can get access to a good internet connection. He encourages all his friends and supporters to come visit soon!
We will never be able to say it enough - but Thank You, Thank You, Thank You to all our BeeHive supporters. It's because of your unwavering support that BeeHive has been able to weather all the challenges over the past couple of years and build a truly remarkable new school that will safely house generations of students to come.
Eva Markiewicz on behalf of The BeeHive School Team