Dear Kudimba friends,

Kudimba is doing well and as always some steps forward have been made.

An important change in Kudimba is that we now have assistance from the social welfare office in Salima. An experienced and knowledgeable coordinator is visiting Kudimba twice per week to work with the team. With the introduction of the covid restrictions the staff needed some help to understand and adhere to the measurements. We asked for support from the social welfare office in our area. As this collaboration turned out so positively we have asked for more input in other areas of the project. The coordinator is now vetting every department of the Kudimba organisation to make recommendations for improvement and to render the project more efficient.

After one month of collaboration our conclusion is that the social welfare officer’s  work is very thorough and objective and has already brought about some positive changes. We are keen to continue this partnership.

One of the changes suggested is the reorganisation of the staff and the participants of Kudimba.

The plan is to divide the Kudimba participants into three small groups according to their ages. For each group one staff member will be in charge to organise activities suitable for their age. Some of the staff members will be redeployed to other areas. For example we will have a designated cook for Kudimba, this is Mercy, who has worked with us from the start of the project. Mercy will be in charge of food, for grocery shopping and to make sure our children are fed and clean after their meals. Matilda and Patricia will move away from the garden department and will be in charge of cleaning and laundry for the education centre.

We are expecting to harvest rice from our own plantation in the month of May. This will be our last rice plantation as we are hoping to start with our new plans for the garden of Kudimba after the harvest.

We are working together with Environmental Management Specialists from the Salima District Council to bring our new exciting plans to life: the plantation of a small Kudimba forest.

The area where the rice grows is very swampy in the rainy season and very dry during the rest of the year which is difficult to manage. We cannot do much more with this land besides planting rice and removing everything after every rice harvest which is labour intensive. The new idea is to plant a large diversity of trees which need a lot of water. The trees will drain the water and will optimise the soil. Our aim is that eventually this part of the garden will turn into a low maintenance area which will provide shade and become a natural play garden for the children.

Another small improvement for Kudimba is that we have recently renovated the washing place, where laundry and dishes of the daycare centre are done. The new structure is more robust and people can now work comfortably in the shade. The grey water from the laundry and dishes is still reused to irrigate the garden.

The building of the walls around Kudimba has been completed and there is now a beautiful and strong gate at the front and the back of the property.

Our communal house for the visitors is completely finished and the result is stunning.

At this time we are building cabinets and a worktop in the education centre, where food can be prepared and all kitchen utensils can be stored. The cooking itself is still done in open air. Also renovations for the staff bathroom are ongoing.

Behind the scenes we are developing a brand new Kudimba website. This website will soon be ready and we look forward to announcing its debut.

Our solar panel project is still on the agenda, though the decision has been taken to postpone for a while until the covid situation has settled.

A very big thank you for all the people who have sent us boxes with clothes for the children after our appeal in the previous newsletter.  We will soon load the boxes onto the container which is going to Malawi in June and we cannot wait to distribute all items to the children.

Greetings from the Kudimba team

Ps: If you prefer not to receive any more Kudimba newsletters in the future, just drop us a word and we will stop sending them to you, you will still be able to follow our updates on our website or on our Facebook page.