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Fyness leaning on a tree

camera icon Mzimba district, Malawi, 2022: Fyness Tembo poses next to a tree in a local wooded area. - Malumbo Simwaka / Christian Aid

Christmas Appeal

Loshas' story: share the spirit of hope

Farming training from our local partner planted a seed of hope for Loshas Munthali.

Sharing festive traditions helps make Christmas a time of hope...

For Loshas, a 53 year-old father of 6 from Mzimba district, Malawi, ‘Christmas means that Jesus was born to free us from our sins.’

To celebrate, ‘we eat food that makes us happy,’ he says. ‘Nice food, that we do not eat that often. We have tea with milk. Or tea with bread depending on how much one has.

However, ‘This year we had problems. The rain didn’t come.'

When we fail to earn enough money for food, we are faced with hunger.

- Losha.

'This is a big problem we face, that makes us pray for rain so the plants can do well. The plants suffer when there is no rain.' Loshas had a water pump, but it was no use. ‘'When there is no rain, the plants suffer, as the pump cannot pump water.'

‘I used to farm a small plot – because I was using the watering can, I was worried about planting on a large plot,’ he says. ‘Now, I can irrigate bananas, tomatoes and vegetables, which helps me a lot.’

But this Christmas, thanks to support received to buy a solar-powered water pump, he has a good feeling about the future.

Your gift of love could help another dad like Loshas make the future better and brighter for his family - and his neighbours.

Loshas watering crops

camera icon Mzimba district, Malawi, 2022: Loshas Munthali waters his garden with a hose. - Malumbo Simwaka / Christian Aid

'The training helped me learn the modern way of farming.'

As well as training, the Village Savings and Loan Scheme gives members a way to access small loans that can make a huge difference – like enabling Loshas to buy the solar water pump he needed.

Of the training he received from our local partner SOLDEV*, Loshas says, ‘You get good ideas from the local project workers in our community, unlike when you are on your own. I realised that they could share ideas with me about farming. The training by the project and Christian Aid helped me learn the modern way of farming.’

Loshas also received seeds to help him put his new approach into practice.

Seeds of growth

But, he adds, ‘It is not just farming, but also the Village Savings and Loan Scheme. I was not a member of the scheme but, through the project, I have been trained to join.’ As he explains:

‘I wanted to have a solar pump for irrigating my garden, so I borrowed some money from the Village Bank. Now that I have the pump, I see that things are moving on well. With the bananas, I started small. But I am expanding now because of the irrigation.’

Big plans

This turn for the better has filled Loshas with hope: ‘My plans are big: I plan to further expand the banana field. When it is bigger, it will start giving me bigger profits. If I start making more profits, I want to help others who are struggling in my community.

I thank Christian Aid for supporting the project because through them, we are assisted. Without them, we would have nothing.’

*Synod of Livingstonia Development Department

Give a gift of love this Christmas

Like Fyness, will you share the thankfulness and joy of having good food to eat? Your gift could help another mum like Fyness to lift her family out of hunger.