Students from Northampton College have helped raise enough money to build a new block of classrooms at a school in Malawi – with a competition now underway to officially name the building.
A year-long fundraising campaign saw students collect cash in aid of Mzipa Liberty, a charity set up by former college lecturer Clement Chunga and his wife Olive.
The Mzipa Liberty Institute of Technology previously had just one block, with temporary shacks housing extra students. But the funding has allowed a new block to be built and plans are now in place to create a third, boasting a staff room, headmaster’s office and fully-stocked library.
Katie Ward, who helped organise the fundraising at Northampton College, said: “Mzipa Liberty is one of our chosen charities and we are delighted to have helped make a real difference to the lives of dozens of children over in Malawi.
“The school is very under developed with no electricity. We have been able to provide a second block, housing two more classrooms, and the facility will help under-privileged students.”
The school currently has 49 students, none of whom could afford an education elsewhere. As the school expands and more sponsors are found, it will be able to offer an education to more children from the local community.
In Malawi only 20 per cent of teenagers either qualify for state education or can afford private education. After finishing school many young people find themselves with no skills or formal secondary education, limiting their opportunities for paid work.
This project aims to give teenagers skills in agriculture, mechanics and carpentry to give young people the skills they need to get jobs or start their own businesses.
Current Northampton College students will have the chance to suggest a name for the new building, with all entries then being discussed by a panel before a final decision is made later this year.
More details about the school can be found at www.mzipaliberty.org and for more information about Northampton College visit www.northamptoncollege.ac.uk