Ecobank Charity Shield proceeds to assist Cyclone Idai survivors

Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has announce that the focus for the 2020 Ecobank Charity Shield is to support survivors of Cyclone Idai in the village of Mwalija, Traditional Authority (T/A) in Chikwawa District.

Chanza (left) hands over the dummy cheque to Nyamilandu

FAM president Walter Nyamilandu announced this on Wednesday at Ecobank Head Office in Blantyre where the Pan African Bank pledged its continued partnership with the local football governing body by increasing the sponsorship package to K18 million, up from the K12 million it injected last year, representing a 50 percent increase.

Nyamilandu announced that Mwalija vVllage was previously a bush and was established as a settlement to survivors of tropical Cyclone Idai.

The new village is now permanent home to over 365 households and hosting a growing population of over 2,600 people and is in dire need of essential public amenities for its new inhabitants.

“The 2020 Ecobank FAM Charity Shield focus is on advocating for quality education for all in line with United Nations Sustainable Development Goal #4 and is being held under the theme, ‘Together for Better Education’.

“Using proceeds from the Ecobank Charity Shield we desire to help in the area of education particularly for the primary going pupils in Mwalija Village, who are failing to access education because of the long distance to their previous school situated in the flood prone areas from which they have reallocated.

“The situation is being compounded because the only viable road — which takes one hour to walk to the school — is impassable due to flooding of river Shire.

“If nothing is not going to be done now, we risk condemning the whole school going generation of Mwalija Village into further abyss of untold poverty and miserly,” Nyamilandu said.

Realising the needs for the people of Mwalija Village are many and enormous, Nyamilandu urged other partners to join the association in fulling this noble task.

He thanked the four teams — Nyasa Big Bullets, Silver Strikers, Beforward Wanderers and Blue Eagles — for their willingness for support and collaboration displayed to make sure that this year it should also have another successful event.

From the proceeds of the 2019 Ecobank Charity Shield, FAM donated a top of the range Ford Ranger twin cab with a trailer to the Association of People with Albinism (APAM) in September.

FAM contributed K9 million while the two participating teams, Nyasa Big Bullets and Mighty Be Forward Wanderers, forfeited their K1 million allocations for their own charitable events towards the purchase of the vehicle.

APAM are using the vehicle for rapid response in the fight against the barbaric killings, abductions and discriminations against people with albinism in Malawi.

For choosing to support the fight against the barbaric killings, abductions and discriminations against people with albinism in Malawi, FAM was awarded with the Best Social Marketing Initiative of the Year by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) Malawi on November 30.

Nyamilandu said FAM Charity Shield has proven beyond reasonable doubt that football is a great tool as a means to solving some of the social economic challenges the country faces.

Since its inception in 2016, the Charity Shield benefitted vulnerable sections of society in many ways such as mobilizing football fans to donate blood in order to ease the shortage of blood in hospitals in the inaugural tournament.

In 2017, FAM donated 15 patient trollies to Kamuzu Central Hospital while in 2018 it donated braille embosser and various items to Ekwendeni School for the visually impaired in Mzimba.

In the same year, FAM also donated various medical and physiotherapy equipment to Kachere Rehabilitation Centre in Blantyre.

“Every Malawian now agrees that Ecobank FAM Charity is a noble cause that saw a very successful event last year when fans came in large numbers for support.

“And that is why we were also able to raise more funds than the rest of the years that helped us procure the rapid response vehicle for APAM,” Nyamilandu said.

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