Road to Relief is all about fundraising for the most vulnerable
Road to Relief fundraises through sourcing in kind donations (i.e. food, medicines, medical equipment and basic necessities), and cash donations through our excellent links with private individuals and the business community in Malawi and abroad.
We don’t directly run the projects we assist, but we scope the most needy and deserving causes/ projects and then we raise money to allow them to achieve their goals. Members attend distributions and keep an eye on the causes we help to ensure funds are correctly and effectively spent through regular feedback and visits.
March 2019 Floods- Road to Relief Colour Run and Riaad Moosa Show
In March 2019, incessant rainfall and the resultant flooding caused devastation to Southern Malawi. This catastrophe resulted in 56 deaths and 868,900 people affected, of which 94,090 were displaced (scattered amongst 173 government camps). Many lost their homes, crops and livelihoods.
Road to Relief galvanised fundraising efforts, and had two fundraising events on the 31st of March, 2019. To start off with, we held our second Colour Run, in conjunction with Saint Andrew’s International High School at their Family Fun Day. That evening, Road to Relief held a Comedy Show, presenting Riaad Moosa Live (a famous South African comedian). All proceeds from both events went entirely towards flood relief.
These events, along with general fundraising amongst family and friends, and our Flood Relief Appeal in conjunction with Banja Umodzi in the USA, resulted in MWK 38 million being raised.
We had a 2 phase action plan for the flood relief. In phase 1, we were looking to provide immediate needs. We purchased buckets, water guard, plastic sheeting, maize flour, oil, sugar, beans, soya pieces, blankets, seed for the winter planting season, farming tools and clothing. We also made up ‘Dignity Packs’, which were buckets that contained underwear, reusable sanitary towels, bath soap and laundry soap for vulnerable women. Road to Relief members personally distributed these items in districts across the affected region.
We had two mass distributions in the Southern Region in conjunction with Asian Muslim Relief Aid (AMRA), totalling over MWK 23 million. The first of these distributions was in Lirangwe, where floods had destroyed over 500 homes. The AMRA team identified village members that needed the most help, and our members went out to carry out this distribution on the 7th of April, 2019.
The following week, we carried out our largest distribution yet. We undertook a 731 aid pack distribution, in partnership again with AMRA, and this time aided by the 99’s for a government camp in Nthole, Nsanje. This camp held over 3,500 people in rudimentary shelters with only 4 pit latrines. They had not received any aid in the month they had been there.
In addition to these, we carried out distributions in Chikwawa, Ngabu, Chileka (with Saint Andrew’s International High School where homes had been damaged by run off from the rains), Michese and Neno, amounting to over MWK 4 million. In each area, we aimed to reach those not assisted by other organizations on the ground, and we ensured that each distribution was carried out by our own members.
For phase 2 of the flood relief, we aim to rebuild some of the homes that were destroyed in the floods. We have set aside MWK 11 million for this project, and we aim to provide homes that can withstand severe weather in the future to those who need it the most.
Packs for Nthole Camp left and Nthole Camp, Nsanje right
Family at Nthole Camp left and Distribution in Chileka with Saint Andrew’s International High School right
2019 Distribution in flood affected areas
2018 The Road to Relief Colour Run
In April 2018, RtR held Blantyre’s first ever colour run to raise funds. The event was hosted by Saint Andrew’s International High School at their fair and fun day as part of the Diamond Celebrations. It was a very well attended event by people of all ages and communities. We raised MWK 6 million at this event and are hoping to repeat it in the future.
Some of the funds were used for the Food Security program inconjunction with Joshua Trust. We funded Starter Seed Packs to the Elderly members of the the communities in which Joshua have their Early Childhood Care Centers (ECCCs). The Students from Saint Andrew’s International High School raised the funds for this and they come with us for the distribution of the pack.
Chirafund are a charity that work within Queeen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre Malawi. Queen Elizabeth Hospital is over crowded and understaffed and patients without a guardian can be left unattended for extended periods of time. The Guardian program employs ‘guardians’ for patients at the hospital, who have travelled far and have no one to ensure they are fed, clean and comfortable. We helped Chirafund to fund this very vital cause.
SAIntS distribution with Joshua Video Times TV (right).Chira Fund Guardians (Pictures below)
2017/2019 Saint Andrew’s International High School
We are very fortunate that SAIntS chose RtR as their school Charity for 2 years commencing September 2017. They raised funds through a bake sale and having a paid Mufti Day every term. Some of their students also accompanied us to distributions we have done for Joshua Trust. Mufti Day Wear Green for Joshua Trust Distribution of Starter Packs RTR
2017 Road to Relief Charity Golf Day and Craft Fair
Our Charity Golf Day and Craft Fair on 8 October 2017 was a huge success. We managed to raise MWK 8.5 million. These funds were raised to help the following causes:
Ndriande Palliative Care Centre (part of Palliative Care Support Trust)
Mwayi Trust Vocational Centre
Road to Relief Food Security Campaign
Breast Care Clinic at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital
In the case of NPCC and the Breast Care Clinic we purchased the items they needed and delivered them personally.
The RTR Food Security program consisted of distributing 315 ‘Starter Packs’ to the elderly and needy families outside Blantyre, in collaboration with Joshua Trust and Social Welfare Services. These packs contained 10 kgs of Fertiliser, 2 kgs of Maize Seed and 1 kg of Soya. This will produce a harvest of 10, 50kg bags of maize ensuring enough food for each family for 10 months. We are hoping to make this a permanent campaign in our calender.
Mwayi Trust Vocational Centre needed help with instructor salaries to get the centre operational. We supplied enough funds to pay the salaries for an instructor for the food preparation carpentry courses.
Mwayi Trust Vocational centre Food Preparation Class (left Picture) and Carpentry Class (right picture)
Donation of Starter packs to the elderly in Machingiri (left Picture) and Donations to the Breast Care Clinic (right Picture)
Donation of medical supplies and equipment to Ndirande Palliative Care.
2016 Hunger Busters Campaign and First Aid Training Event
In 2016, Malawi faced a hunger crisis due to the heavy floods and harsh drought in 2015/2016. The lack of agricultural production left 6.5 million people in need of urgent humanitarian assistance, of which 975,000 were children under two years old.
In November 2016, Road to Relief launched our Hunger Busters Campaign, in collaboration with Hillview, Phoenix and Saint Andrews’ International Primary Schools. The aim of this campaign was to raise awareness and funds for the ongoing hunger crisis Malawi was experiencing. We raised over K4 million from this fundraiser and distributed maize flour to various villages in Southern Malawi.
We also had The Road to Relief First Aid Training workshop, which was a great success. The participants found the event to be highly informative and learned many valuable lessons and techniques with respect to First Aid. Apart from the educational aspect, we managed to raise approximately K1 million.
The proceeds of both these fundraising efforts were used to purchase maize, which was distributed to needy villages in Machinga, Chiradzulu and Phalombe. The balance of the funds are being used to help Joshua Trust to feed under 5s in their Early Childhood Centers and members of their Elderly Kitty Club, Chirafund (a charity connected to Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital) and Ndirande Palliative Care Centre. We helped all these projects feed the needy until December 2017 with Likuni Phala ( a nutritional maize porridge), maize and Chiponde (a nutritional supplement).
Hillview Primary School student cooking Likuni Phala at the Joshua Trust Chlaweni Early Childcare Centre(left picture) . Phoenix International Primary School students making the Likuni Phala at The Joshua Trust Selemoni Early Childcare Centre(right picture)
Donation of Likuni Phala to Chira Fund and Ndilande Palliative Care Centre
2016 African Gala Night
In 2016 Road to Relief responded to the hunger crisis looming in Malawi, as well as focusing on the plight of women, with an African Gala Night event at Ryalls, Blantyre. We raised over MK7.5 million to be shared between the hunger crisis and local charity MASYAP's ‘bring back our girls’ plight for girls at risk of HIV/AIDS.
2015 Flood Relief
Although Road to Relief didn’t hold a fundraiser in 2015, we rapidly responded to the floods that hit southern Malawi in Jan 2015 by appealing for donations in kind and funds from our local and international network of contributors for food and essential household goods relief packages to the value of MK 14 million.
2014 Road to Relief Golf Tournament
In 2014 we held the first ever Road to Relief Golf Tournament, where amateur golfer teams vied for the title. The event had generous corporate sponsorship and a very successful auction boasting memorabilia from Louis Oosthuizen, the international golfer. We managed to raise an amazing K8 million at this event alone.
The funds for this went towards purchasing wheelchairs for children suffering from Hydrocephalus. This enabled them to be more mobile within the home and allowed several of them to attend school.
The balance of the funds helped purchase medical supplies for the Labour Ward and Burns Unit at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre. A girl suffering from Hydrocephalus picture before (left) and after (right).
2013 Breakfast at Ryalls
In 2013 we held a Breakfast at The Ryalls event inspired by the classic style of Audrey Hepburn in 'Breakfast at Tiffanies’.The event was attended by over 150 ladies and raised money towards the setting up of the One Stop Rape Crisis Centre at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital. The ‘One Stop Centre’ is a rape crisis center providing medical, psycho-social and legal support for victims of sexual abuse under the age of fifteen. In addition to providing essential medicines and supplies including pain killers, antibiotics, HIV testing kits as well as disinfectants to the centre, we supported an outreach and awareness campaign of the centre’s services.
2012/2013 Malawi Montessori Christian School
Road to Relief initiated a feeding program at The Montessori Christian School (part of the Malawi Montessori Project) based in Chirimba, Blantyre from September 2012-2013.Providing meals to the sixty vulnerable children (pictured with their teacher)
2007/2011 Frenaso Children Center, Ndirande
This was one of RTR’s first projects. The Ndirande Township is one of the poorest and most dangerous townships in Blantyre. At the time of intervention, one in every five people was infected with the HIV virus. RTR purchased a long lease for a piece of land in Ndirande and built a small childcare centre. This centre is now under the supervision of Social Welfare services.Ten years on, it is still going strong, providing childcare and 2 nutritious meals a day to 56 children under the age of 5.