27 Monkton senior school pupils have raised £15,000 over two years to build a kitchen at a local school in Malawi and are spending their half term visiting the school to see the official opening of a kitchen. The pupils raised the money through a number of events including a sponsored long distance cycle ride, hosting village tea parties and holiday jobs including babysitting.

On day one of the school’s visit there was an official opening ceremony for the kitchen where our Head Girl, Emily Kirk, had the honour of cutting the ribbon. The afternoon was then spent reading with the children in small groups and playing football and netball against the locals.

After visiting the school, two of the students, Esther and Jess aged 15, commented, “When we arrived we were high-fiving the children and they loved it! It’s incredible how something so simple can bring so much happiness – it really showed us how to appreciate the little things. Overall the general atmosphere of the day was incredible and really put everything in perspective for all of us.”

This is the second time that Monkton pupils have visited Malawi to enable them to gain first-hand experience of what life is like in a developing country. The rest of the trip will include visits to local schools where the pupils will plan and deliver lessons to the children; an orphanage for children who have lost their parents to HIV/AIDS; assisting in the building of a new secondary school, which Monkton helped lay the foundations for; and a trip to a local prison where any kind of guest visit is rare.

One of the students commented on the trip, “These two weeks have been a real eye-opener and have been an unforgettable experience”
It has been an incredible and life-changing two weeks.”