The Anglican Church of Malawai and Birmingham Diocese have been in partnership since 1966. Each year, the Birmingham Diocese sends a container of donations to support the churches in Malawai. Donations typically include hymn books, prayer books, clothes, tools and sewing machines. St Mary’s contributes to this each year. Unfortunately, due to lockdown, the packing and delivery of the container for 2020 has been delayed.
In June, we received the following update from our contact within the Diocese of Birmingham:
I’m afraid I can’t yet give you any definite news. All I can say is that the lorry certainly cannot safely be loaded until the 2m social distancing rule is relaxed. So that means we cannot send the lorry this school term.
In early July, we will make a decision as to whether we will attempt to send the lorry in mid September. If we think the 2m is going to be reduced over the summer, and also if the virus has not begun to get out of control in Malawi (at the moment there are still only 4 recorded deaths), then we will aim for mid September.
If September is not possible, then the lorry will have to wait until March/April 2021 because sending the lorry later than Sept will cause problems when it gets to Africa because the wet season will have begun.
At the moment that is all I can say. Truth be told, like much else, the future is rather uncertain!
We are still hoping that the container will leave the UK in September.
Thank you to everyone that has supported us thus far. We have already been given 6 sewing machines with an offer of 4 more, a football goal post and net, a quantity of tools as well as clothes, toys and many useful miscellaneous items! A reminder of what we sent last year: items the ‘group’ made, inclduing dresses, skirts, shorts, shawls, blankets and toys; a lot of bedding; clothes and toys; tools such as hammers, screw drivers, chisels, screws and nails; melamine kitchenware; cutlery; first aid things; toiletries; lots of books, stationery, pens and pencils; baby equipment; a scooter – the list goes on! Hopefully this gives you an idea of what can be donated. Please make sure donated clothes are suitable for a hot climate!
With St Mary’s church and the Old School closed until further notice, we are slightly short on storage space. If you are able to offer some storage space, such as the corner of a garage or dry outbuilding, please contact Vera Male on email@example.com or 01926611942. Please also contact Vera for any queries relating to donating.
We are scheduled to hold a Parish Lunch in early September. During this event we will be holding a collection to pay for the transportation of the donations. If we are unable to hold the Parish lunch due to Covid-19 restrictions, we will put in an appeal in the next Parish magazine.
Thank you once again for all those who have supported so far and we pray that we will be able to send the container in September.