Flames’ AFCON fundraising drive reaches its crescendo with dinner hosted by Chakwera Nov. 27

President Lazarus Chakwera is set to host the VVIP Fundraising Dinner which the Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has organised as resource mobilization drive ahead of the Flames’ preparations and participation for the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroun from January.

The Flames’ AFCON finals budget is pegged at K1.5 billion (about US$1.8 million) which would in part be funded by the government; the Flames’ official sponsor, FDH Bank as well as participation subsidy from world governing body, FIFA.

Meanwhile, FAM constituted the Flames resource mobilization taskforce to initiate all other shortfalls with a target to raise K350 million.

The initiative, which included Kuipatsa Flames Fundraising golf tournament which the Vice-President Saulos Chilima and Finance Minister Felix Mlusu played all 18 holes at Lilongwe Golf Club last month, is reaping fruits as several corporate partners have sponsored towards the cause.

The Kuipatsa Moto Flames VVIP Fundraising Dinner with President Chakwera has four sponsorship categories — Platinum at K5 million; Gold at K3.5 million; at Silver K2.5 million and individual at K250,000 while highest bidders are set to dine with the President on November 27 at Kamuzu Palace from 18:00hrs.

When Airtel Malawi Plc present a total amount of K25 as of last week, the Flames resource mobilisation taskforce chairperson, Justice Jabbar Alide — who is also FAM first vice-president — had said they still have a big shortfall towards their target of K350 million.

Chakwera with the Flames soon after their AFCON qualification

But he was optimistic of meeting the target towards the close of the campaign as they still has so many pledges that are yet to be honoured as well as expecting a huge windfall from the VVIP Dinner.

Of the total of K25 million, Airtel Malawi — sponsors of the end of the league season tournament, the Airtel Top 8 — committed K2.5 million each for the golf tournament and the VIP dinner.

Other sponsors for the golf tournament included the country leading financial service provider NICO Group that include NBS Bank and Eris Properties. who contributed K5 million.

The resource mobilisation taskforce also initiated a raffle draw dubbed ‘Kuipatsa Moto Flames and Win’ that targets to raise K60 million. The public is invited to donate towards the Flames and their names are automatically entered into the raffle draw whose first draw was done last week where 10 people won replica jerseys.

According to FAM’s broadcasting and marketing manager, Tulipo Mwenelupembe more people are donating money for the Flames and for the first draw they had 1,984 entries.

He told Fam.mw that they received slow response from the public in the first weeks because many people were not aware of the initiative but picked up after several awareness campaigns through the media, including community radios.

In the initiative, individuals are enticed to donate a minimum of K50 to the Flames by dialing *3089# using both TNM and Airtel networks and they are eligible to enter the draw when their donation has accumulated to K250 or more.

Weekly draws winners are receiving Flames replica Jerseys; monthly winners go away with three 210ltr deep freezers each while a Toyota Sienta will be given out as a grand prize to one lucky person at the end of the initiative on December 30.

Finance Minister Mlusu — who is a passionate golfer joined fellow golfer Chilima as solidarity as he is expected to release funding for the Flames participation in Cameroon in which they are grouped alongside Senegal, Guinea and fellow Confederation of Southern African Football Association (COSAFA) member, Zimbabwe.

The host country are in Group A alongside Burkina Faso, Ethiopia and Cape Verde; Group C has north African giants Morocco alongside Ghana, Comoros and Gabon while the Super Eagles of Nigeria are in Group D with AFCON seven-time champions Egypt alongside Sudan and Guinea-Bissau.

Reigning African champions Algeria are in group E alongside Côte d’Ivoire, Sierra-Leone and Equatorial Guinea in Group E while Tunisia, Mali, Mauritania and Gambia are in Group F.

The hosts, who are five-time tournament champs, will host Burkina Faso in Group A opener in Yaoundé on January 9.

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