Archive for category Volunteer updates

Volunteer Rowan’s 2nd week at MOET – August 2016

It was all fun and games for Rowan in his second week at MOET:

This week saw me making my teaching debut at MOET, as I was assigned to teach English and Geography to MOET graduates who return in the summer holidays for supplementary secondary lessons (free of charge).
My first English lesson was on modifiers; of which according to the grammar book I referenced there are three types; positive, comparative and superlative. I found it initially difficult to gauge the class (Form 4 next year, the final year of secondary), but was soon given an explanation as to why some of them looked confused when upon asking Joseph for an example of a positive modifier which is just an adverb or adjective (literally modifying the verb or the noun), he wrote “The English teacher speaks very quickly” So following that piece of feedback I slowed down and it  went well.
Geography on Friday featured the topic of Population Change, as in AS in the UK. I’ve inadvertently picked up the Malawian teaching style with lots of writing on the board and no particularly creative activities to be seen, but you know; when in Mangochi…

Geography

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18 year old Rowan volunteers for a month at MOET July-Aug 2016

Rowan’s first week and first impressions……
I’ve just completed the first week of my month in Malawi where I’m at MOET school, doing some work with returning secondary students and some football coaching later on in my stay.  Before leaving London I had been under the impression my journey to Malawi was a long one;  a total of about 24 hours; but on the plane to South Africa my neighbour was a Canadian architect travelling to the Gambia. His journey duration dwarfed mine. He had had to fly from Vancouver to London before heading to Africa with me; when he would then fly to Angola and then onto Gambia. All this was to take over 2 days.
Still at the airport in Lilongwe I was changing my Sterling into Kwacha, foolishly asking for “some smaller notes” which resulted in me being given about 350 500MK notes and about another 100 notes in smaller denominations like 100’s, 50’s and 20’s. I hadn’t quite appreciated the exchange rate and quickly realised my wallet was not going to be large enough to store Kwacha. It may have been more manageable in 1000MK notes…

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MEET THE CHILDREN AT MOET – new video from volunteer Kate

In her 3 months volunteering at MOET, 18 year old Kate Bernard managed to interview over 50 pupils, past and present and get lots of video footage.  This is the first in a series of beautifully edited videos, which give such a great insight into the life of MOET – its school and its outreach projects.

Watch out for the next one…. Meet the Teachers!

 

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INTRODUCING OUR NEW VOLUNTEER – JOHANNES

This is the first of Johannes’s monthly blogs:  http://johannesatmoet.blogspot.co.uk/
Sunday, 30th of August
Hello, and a warm welcome to my blog! For those who don’t know me: My name is Johannes Lau, I come from Germany and from the beginning of this August I will be doing a voluntary service at MOET school (Mangochi Orphans Education and Training) in Malawi for 1 year.
Johannes Lau_MOET Volunteer_ 2015 to 2016
I will be following Kate as a volunteer here, and luckily I have had a few days of overlap with her and her sister Ruth so they could explain me the most important things I need to know in order to survive in Malawi. Lucky me!
Exactly a month ago today I arrived at Lilongwe airport, being quite tired after a 40 hours journey with two stopovers. At the airport I had to wait quite a long time for my luggage, but as it arrived and I proceeded to the exit I was given a very warm welcome to Malawi by the school’s headmaster Patterson Majonanga and his wife Rose. I could find the two quite easily because Rose was holding a paper saying “Johannes MOET”.
I enjoyed the sunbeams on my skin, as we drove on a bumpy road to the house of a friend of Patterson, who was introduced to me as “The Professor”. He turned out to be a quite rich man, who was not just a professor but the vice chancellor of Malawi’s University! We had a great lunch, including rice and chicken (You have to remember, that rice is so expensive for the vast majority of Malawians, they can only afford to eat it at Christmas!) as well as some Fanta.
Afterwards we I just wanted to withdraw some cash at an ATM machine. A very quick thing I thought but not in Malawi, if you have a MasterCard. So we had to drive around Lilongwe and wait in several queues for 1 or 2 hours to find a machine that accepts my card (many say they accept MasterCard but in fact they don’t).
As we arrived at my “new home” it was already dark and I felt a bit uncomfortable because of the mosquitoes. You can’t imagine the unforeseen feeling of safety a mosquito net can give you!
On my third day here, most of the children in the village already knew my name without me having even told one of them apart from Patterson … Seems to be like people in Malawian villages talk to each other a lot more than Germans do.
Sadly, after some nice days and evenings with Malawi-Style food cooked by Kate and Ruth they had to back to the UK and now I am the only volunteer here.
Finally the day has come to begin my work! My first task was to teach computer skills to former MOET students who are now at secondary school and come back here to receive extra tuition. What a dedication of both, the students and the school – you can really see that MOET cares and that the students are eager to learn! Sadly in the beginning only 2 out of 6 of the new computers were working because there was no extension cable (as Kate wrote). But after going to Mangochi with Patterson to buy one, the children can now enjoy the comfort of working with 6 computers at the same time. You see your support is needed. Every little helps! (Thanks to Tesco for telling me every time I’m in the UK 🙂 )

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VOLUNTEER UPDATE FROM KATE – Week 13 Friday 10th July

An uneventful, happy week really. Maybe because I’ve got Ruth to look forward to. I am SO excited to see her, and to see what she makes of it all – this Malawi life which has become familiar to me, but actually seems like worlds away from Whashton life!

Last Saturday we had the Education Day at Koche primary school. There were plenty of people there. It was interesting to see the children from other schools, and the messages about teenage pregnancy and sanitation came across really well. The MOET kids did a great job with their drama! It was a bit daunting, there was a big audience and they had to use microphones! They rose to the occasion and enjoyed it. Read the rest of this entry »

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VOLUNTEER UPDATE FROM KATE – Week 12 Friday 3rd July

Not one of my better weeks. I’ve been Struck Down with a cold since Monday. Hopefully I’m on the mend now.

The weekend was a nice one however. Last Friday, we had a school trip Monkey Bay! We set off in 3 pick-ups, the kids rode in the back and sang songs on the way. Monkey Bay is a Trading Centre about 40 minutes north up the lakeshore, with a big boatyard – it’s there where most of Lake Malawi’s boats get built and registered. But we were going there for sports, to play matches against another primary school. MOET’s netballers, footballers, and enthusiastic supporters all came along. Also, the HIV/AIDS awareness club had a visit to Dzimwe Radio station in Monkey Bay where they were live on the radio doing some poems that they’d prepared! Read the rest of this entry »

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VOLUNTEER UPDATE FROM KATE – Week 11 26th June 2015

I’m writing this on Wednesday evening as there’s a power cut and I’m sitting with a candle and nothing else to do! I want to get it posted asap tomorrow before the Internet goes off again.  It’s been fine this week. At school I’ve been filming more case studies. I talked to a boy and a girl from Std 4, with the help of Mr Chulu translating to Chichewa in parts! I also talked to a secondary school student, Salome, who went to MOET and comes back to use the library. It’s the kind of place people like popping back to, and are remembered by friends and teachers after they have left. It sounds like secondary school is quite demanding.

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VOLUNTEER UPDATE FROM KATE – Week 10 19th June 2015

I told myself when I arrived that getting to Week 10 would be a milestone and here I am. More than halfway there now. 7 weeks until  home! Going back is going to be a big shock in a lot of ways. The strangeness and contrast in what I’ve seen of the world so far has made quite an impression. Read the rest of this entry »

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Long-time friends of MOET visit the school after 5 years – May 2015

Together with Hilary Hegarty and Rosemary Wright, we returned to MOET for the first time in 5 years in May. We were impressed by the growth of MOET and the development of expertise within the staff team.

More than anything we were left with the impression of pupils and staff working together very positively and having fun while doing so. Read the rest of this entry »

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VOLUNTEER UPDATE FROM KATE – Week 9 12th June 2015

Another good week here in Mangochi.
Especially the weekend, when Mike, Sue, Hilary and Rosemary were here. We went round to eat at Father Eston’s house on Friday and had a great time. We sat out on the veranda with Eston’s big family and had a lovely help-yourself-to-seconds sort of meal. The Chief of the local villages (a chief of chiefs really) was there and he was very interesting to talk to. Read the rest of this entry »

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