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Dear team, I am Malawian born but work in the UK. The village of my origin in Malawi does not have a nursery school so I started paying 3 women to teach basic literacy and numeracy to the under 5 year olds as well as feeding them porridge. The children rely on this and at times its their only meal of the day. The programme is run out in the open due to lack of a building for the children. I want to build them a basic plywood structure of their own so that they can learn in a comfortable environment without worrying about the weather. I have started a Go Fund me to raise £500 for building materials but have struggled to gain traction, do you have any advice on how I can successfully build the nursery school?

Thank you,


     Thank you for writing to us with your important question.  Of course, we share your hope for the success of this project. Based on your note, the amount of money you want to raise is relatively small, so we are optimistic that you should be able to do this.  Beyond that, we can offer some thoughts for your consideration:
     First, in many instances this amount of money has in fact been raised for these types of causes by GoFundMe campaigns, so we think this should be a strong likelihood in your case.  If you are having difficulty with the campaign, can you get advice from other successful campaigners, or even from GoFundMe itself?
     Keep in mind that to raise 500 pounds, you really need only one relatively comfortable person who is sympathetic either (1) to you personally, (2) to your cause, (3) to preschool children, or (4) to Malawi. Who might you know who meets one or more of these criteria?
     What about contacting, or meeting with a group of, other Malawians also living in the U.K., and asking for their ideas?
     Or what about contacting relevant government offices (e.g., the British High Commission), not to ask for money directly,  but rather for ideas?
     Or might you be in personal touch with organizations that already support programs in Malawi, such as the Sparkle Foundation ?
     Can you produce one or more visual images (photo, slide show, or video) that you could show on social media (e.g., YouTube, TikTok, or Instagram), since visual images of children are often more compelling than words?
     nd can you also take advantage of the approaching holiday season, which often stimulates generosity?
      At the beginning of your note, however, you also mention that you are paying women to teach literacy and numeracy.  The cost of doing this would of course add up to much more than 500 pounds over the long term, and we wonder about the source of those funds.
      If you wanted to seek support for those costs as well. you might here consider writing a grant or other funding proposal. You can find some basic information on how to do this in the Community Tool Box, Chapter 42, Getting Grants and Financial Resources, at
     We hope some of these thoughts may be useful to you. Thanks again for being in touch, and all very best wishes as your work continues.

Question Date: Sun, 10/09/2022