Umoyo Community Project
In Year Two our pupils learn how they can have a positive impact on the lives of other children elsewhere in the world. The Umoyo Project is a UK registered charity which funds specific projects in a dedicated area in Northern Malawi. Their motto is “enabling and empowering independence”, and as a school we have had an association with the charity, through fundraising, since 2010. During our “Friendship Week” in November that year, every child took home a leaflet explaining how we would start raising money to buy bricks to help build a new school for the children. Every £10 raised bought 100 bricks and it was lovely to see the Year Two children organising and running meetings with the School Council to decide how the monies would be raised.
We held a talent show and mini fair activity morning and along with collections from our Christmas Productions, in 2011/2012 we raised enough money to provide 6000 bricks to complete the building of the school. The project leaders confirmed that without the children’s efforts it would not have been completed.
In 2012/2013 our new Year Two children decided to hold a school quiz, toy sale and fun run to raise money so that all the children at the new school could have a smart school uniform. This also benefitted the wider community as local people were employed to make the uniform. Having achieved this, in 2013 the children raised funds to buy a much needed additional bicycle ambulance by organising a wood crafts and bring and buy toy sale.
In 2013/2014 the children embarked on the latest fundraising project to help complete the building of a Health Clinic. The Umoyo Project needs another £2,000 to complete the building of the Clinic. So far we have contributed £425 at Christmas and the children organised a cake sale and nearly new toy and book sale in February which together raised an impressive £524.80, which when exchanged in Malawi Kwacha is worth at least 10 times as much as at home in England!! The children have plans in place for further fundraising activities including a clay modelling day!
In 2014/2015 our fundraising events included making creative bookmarks; hosting a film night; a welly walk and teddy bear's picnic. We raised an amazing £750. in total during the school year. The money raised went towards building a new, much needed, well for the villagers.
In 2015/2016 the Year Two children organised a day of fidget spinner making, a day of biscuit making and a day of circuit training. These events raised £754. which was used to buy blankets for the healthcare centre.
In 2016/2017 the children planned two fundraising events to support the charity. They baked and decorated cookies and organised a fun run. The fun run consisted of running as many half mile laps around the playground as they could in half an hour. For every lap they ran they were given a stamp on a very special map. Both events raised a total of £1,070 which was used for new uniforms and desks.
In 2017/2018 the children continued to fundraise for the project by running a mask making workshop. Everyone was invited to design, make and decorate an African animal mask for a donation. The event raised £207 which will help towards refurbishing the school library. For our last fundraising event of the school year, Woodpecker Class decided to organise a “book” sale. Everyone was encouraged to colour-in and decorate a printed book mark to take home or use in school. We also sold “Malawi” hat. The hats are made especially for our children and parents by a tailor in Malawi. Both events raised £145 which brought the total amount raised for the whole school year to an amazing £774.
In 2018/2019 our fundraising events included making origami snakes, pasta bracelets and elephant greeting cards. We raised over £639 in total which went towards buying bricks for a new library, school uniform and additional bicycle ambulances.
In 2019/2020 we made decorative monkey door hangers and beautiful butterflies. Unfortunately due to COVID we were only able to organise two events during this year, however we still managed to raise an amazing £523. The children still needed money for a new library and so our donations went towards buying some bricks.
In 2020/2021 we made origami snakes, took part in a fun run and completed an on-line quiz. We raised £582 which was a fantastic effort by everyone. The money was sent to the children for their new library.
In 2021/2022 we made origami elephant cards, decorative key rings and decorated biscuits with the Umoyo Flag. The £595 raised was used to buy bricks to build a new library.
In 2023/2024 we continued to raise money to help build and fill the library with new books. We organised a running track event, made Malawi bookmarks and the whole school learnt a new dance led by Neptune Class. The three events raised an amazing £1,030.50.
During each of the years we have continued to give large contributions from the donations made by parents and family at our wonderful Nativity plays.
Working with the Umoyo Orphan Project is now an integral part of the curriculum. Children learn of their responsibility to others and their capacity to make a difference. Through geography the pupils learn about Malawi, it’s similarities and differences to the U.K., and we are most grateful to Sarah and Chris from the project in maintaining these valuable links with our school.
Mrs Browning, Mrs Puttock and Mrs Wolfe enjoyed their visit to Malawi to take part in the official opening of the library.