Malawi Vice President Saulos Chilima on Monday commended Tennis superstar, Rodger Federer for supporting the country’s early children development programs.
Speaking when Federer paid a courtesy call to the vice president, Chilima said he was “very happ”y about various social programs which the tennis champion is undertaking in Malawi through his charity foundation,
Chilima thanked Federer for finding time to visit Malawi saying: “Some of us have followed your sterling career in tennis and it is a dream come true that you are with us today.”
The Malawian vice president, a sportman himself who plays tennis and golf in his free time, said the financial assistance to Malawi cannot be taken for granted.
“On behalf of President Arthur Peter Mutharika and the people of Malawi, I would like to express my profound gratitude to you for the financial support which your foundation gives to Malawi in support of the government’s integrated Early Childhood Development (ECD) programme,” said Chilima.
Chilima said he was happy to learn that Federer’s organization has embarked a 10 year Comprehensive Early Childhood Development Programme in the six districts of Nsanje, Machinga, Rumphi, Chitipa, Lilongwe and Ntchisi.
In the programme the foundation is expected to build model ECD centres.
“What is pleasing is that 50 centers have already been constructed,” pointed out Chilima.
“I am further informed that financial assistance from the foundation also supports health and sanitation, nutrition, stimulation materials, parenting education and support.
“The foundation’s financial support to Malawi is greatly improving the Integrated Early Childhood Development service delivery which, in turn, is improving the lives and well-being of thousands of poor and vulnerable children,” said Chilima.
Chilima appealed to development partners and other stakeholders to support the Malawi Government’s efforts in investing heavily in Integrated Early Childhood Development mainly by among other things help in construction of ECD infrastructure; capacity building of caregivers, centre management committees, parents; and provision of nutritious meals to children, among other interventions, require substantial financial resources for which support is needed.
Prior to the VP statement, Minister of Gender, elderly , disability and social welfare, Patricia Kaliati, spoke in praise of Federer activities in Malawi.
Federer jetted in Malawi Sunday for a one week visit where he undertook various ECD Programmes
Working with international charity Action Aid, Federer’s foundation has been working in six districts in Malawi since 2011 and aims to reach 135,000 children by 2021.
“I think it’s really important that every child should have this opportunity, so I am trying to help as much as I can,” he said.
Child malnutrition is a pressing issue in Malawi, where more than half of children aged between 18 and 23 months suffer from stunted growth, according to a recent study.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :