The First Lady Madam Gertrude Mutharika on Wednesday laid a foundation stone for a girl’s hostel project at Emvuyeni Community Day Secondary School in Ekwendeni, Mzimba district to mark the start of her Beautify Malawi (Beam) Trust girl’s hostel project across the country.
Speaking at the event Madam Mutharika said the project at Emvuyeni CDSS is one of the many projects that BEAM in partnership with Plan International Malawi will undertake in a number of districts in the country to retain girls in school.
The First Lady said hundreds of girls in Malawi have failed to make it in their education because of the long distance that they cover to and from school which also expose them to several ills including sexual abuse by boys and men who impregnate them or infect them with various diseases including HIV and AIDS.
She further explained that self-boarding initiative that many girls have resorted to solve the long distance impediment, has failed to offer a conducive environment for girls education as the girls’ security is compromised.
“This hostel will greatly help in safeguarding the future of the girls schooling at this school. It will completely do away with the challenges that these girls have been facing due to travelling long distances to and from this school. Some of these girls cover about 8 to 12 kilometres every day. Travelling such a long distance definitely impacts on the performance of these students.
“In the morning, the girls reach school too tired for lessons. Likewise, in the evening they also reach home very tired for further studying. So, this girls’ hostel will rescue girls at this school from this situation and in course contribute to improved performance,” said Madam Mutharika.
She commended Plan International Malawi for partnering with BEAM Trust on this project as it embraces BEAM Trust’s ideals of supporting girl child education and also complements government’s efforts in advancing girls education in Malawi.
The First Lady explained that the project marks another milestone in BEAM Trust’s quest to provide a conducive environment for girls to excel in education in Malawi saying it has emphasised BEAM trust’s vision of beauty by considering educating girls as an important ingredient for beautifying Malawi.
“I would like to encourage other development organizations in the country to emulate Plan International Malawi’s gesture by partnering with BEAM Trust on this life changing project. All people in the communities should know that this is not a project for Plan International Malawi and BEAM Trust but rather their own,” she said.
The commencement of the project which will cost about K40 million comes just a month after the First Lady launched the Girls’ hostel Initiative at a fundraising dinner dance held in Blantyre.
Earlier, the First Lady also toured Baula CDSS in the same Mzimba North East constituency where she opened two newly constructed school blocks and a teacher’s house at the school also constructed by Plan International Malawi.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :