A group of local church leaders are pioneering community transformation in Chikwawa village like it has never happened before. Working together with community leaders, these pastors and their congregations and beginning the take ownership of their own development and sharing God’s love practically with the people living in their community.

In early September a group made up of representatives from each local committee met together to discuss development in each area. 25 people attended including village chiefs, village development committee members, the chairman for the main market and church leaders.

The meeting opened with prayers and a sermon on the main qualities and characteristics of a leader - helping people understand their responsibility to care for and nurture their communities. They then looked at the meaning of development, what poverty means further than simply the physical and methods to overcome it.

A group of people sitting in a circle in the shade of a tree

Then time was spent identifying what some of the problems that needed addressing were. Some of the key things that came up were: long distances to hospital and school, high drop-out rate of children from school, disorder in the local market, lack of community toilets, accidents caused by bad roads and speeding vehicles, increased theft and difficulty on crossing some streams and rivers.

The meeting ended with a commitment to meet together at the end of the month to continue discussing and analysing the causes of the problems to find solutions. During the closing speeches one Chief said excitiedly “This the best community meeting I have attended so far, because it has brought us together as leaders of the people from different groupings to talk about the development of our area! This has shown that we love each other and our area”. As solutions are found, communities will become transformed.

This the best community meeting I have attended so far...This has shown that we love each other and our area

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