In part response to the address by the President of Malawi, President Lazarus Chakwera at the AGM of the Scotland Malawi Partnership (SMP) on October 3rd which challenged the Scotland Malawi Partnership to ignite a movement of climate change activists amongst our peoples, to capture the imagination of Malawian youths. The SMP hosted a Cross-Party Group, to hear updates from 2050 and from the Young Leaders in Malawi themselves.
Hendricks Nkhata the Project Coordinator for the Climate Change Young Leaders project introduced the two young leaders who were to present at the meeting, Edward Msiska and Temwani Kaponda. Before they were introduced Hendricks gave a brief overview of the project and its impact on the communities the young leaders are based in. He also outlined the plans for the third year of the project explaining their plans on amplifying the COP26 amongst other project activities and deliverables.
Temwani Kaponda a student at the university of Malawi, the polytechnic talked about how Climate change has impacted many communities in Malawi and how she felt these effects as a young girl growing up on a farm.She identified the two most burning challenges her community is facing as being depletion of natural resources at a very fast rate and waste management. She suspects these challenges maybe a result of energy problems (which is neither available to everyone nor consistent let alone affordable) and lack of advocacy, knowledge and capacity in regards to waste management.
She also presented on the work she has been doing so far which includes tree planting and waste management in her home district Rumphi, which is known for poor waste management.
The Second Presentation was done by Edward Msiska who is a Co-Founder and Director of a led organization called Youth Action for Success and Development based in Lilongwe.
He explained some of the innovative solutions that he is implementing as a young leader to address the climate change issues in the community. These include:
a. Making paper briquettes and agriculture waste briquettes as one way of promoting alternative cooking fuel to reduce over dependence on wood charcoal and firewood, and also in the process promoting sanitation in schools and surroundings.
b. Championing the use of Organic manure/fertilizer to restore health soil and make farming a productive field. Making of organic fertilizer using advanced formulae to contribute in promoting food security and addressing poverty which forces more families and individuals to venture into charcoal and firewood business/ deforestation in rural and semi-urban areas
These presentations were followed by Q&A and then later on an update on the consultations on the review of Scottish Government’s International Development policy by SMP CEO David hope Jones