Tumaini 5th anniversary registers 30 000 attendees: Plans for  2019 festival of ‘hope’ underway

Tens of thousands of people from all walks of life from 2nd to 3rd November flocked to Dzaleka Refugee Camp in Dowa to celebrate peaceful coexistence, intercultural harmony and humanity at this year’s  5th anniversary celebrations  of Tumaini Arts Festival.

One of the performers in Zombie costume .- Phoro credit by Clem Kwidzombe
Zombie parade.- Phoro credit by Clem Kwidzombe
One of the local artists Lazarus.- Phoro credit by Clem Kwidzombe

Tumaini which has now become an annual two day festival saw people of different backgrounds integrate and share cultures through music, arts and food.

Addressing the media on the sidelines of the event, Tumaini founder and Congolese slam poet Trésor Nzengu Mpauni also known as Menes La Plume said the festival has grown rapidly in so many aspects , saying it has potential to become a global phenomenon.

“We would like to say a big thank you to everyone who attended Tumaini Festival 2018, it was an immense pleasure to be able to put more than 30,000 people from all walks of life together during the two day festival,” Mpauni explained.

He added: “Thank you to the 260 volunteers for running up and down to make magic happen, thank you to the security team for the hard work and ensuring we were all safe and sound . We are glad to say that everything went smoothly without any incident reported.”

The festival is an event that seeks to bring joy, hope and allow refugees to reduce the trauma and forget about the persecutions that lead people into fleeing their countries to become refugees and asylum seekers.

In her remarks, UNHCR representative in Malawi Monique Ekoko hailed the Tumaini organizers and pledged continued support towards the festival.

“To us Tumaini is a great event to showcase the talents and skills that exist at Dzalela refugee camp. We always ensure to promote peaceful coexistance between the refugees and host communities.

“If we had enough funding we would do more.  We have a funding shortfall of almost $10 million. We gave K11 million to support this event,” Ekoko disclosed.

‘Tumaini’ is a Swahili word which means ‘Hope’.

The inaugural Tumaini Festival took place in 2014 from 17 to 22 November at Dzaleka Refugee Camp. The festival was a week-long extravaganza of performances, workshops, and events.

Activities during the week took place throughout the community, celebrating diverse art forms.

The festival culminated in a final day of performances on Saturday, 22 November, 2014, featuring acts from Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe, as well as Blantyre, Dzaleka itself, and the villages surrounding the camp.

Theo Thomson, Lazarus, The Wailing Brothers, Madaliso Band, Code Sangala, Agorosso, Salama Africa Dance Crew, Krazy Colors and Daughters Band performed at the festival.

Across the previous editions, Tumaini Festival united 10 nationalities of performers: DRC, Rwanda, Burundi, Malawi, Zambia, Mozambique, Belgium, UK, Italy and South Korea.

Tumaini 5th edition was organized in partnership withUNHCR Malawi, Plan International Malawi, UN WOMEN Malawi, NFB, Klaus, Zeeya and Malawi government.

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