VICTOR MENSHA

 
Our guest, Victor Mensha, was asked to speak about projects underway in his Club’s area/ District (Malawi, N. Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe):
 
There are over 11 projects focused on needs in the area.
 
The Healthy Kids/ Brighter Future program is meant to address school absenteeism by training teachers to identify early illness symptoms.  Over 200 teachers have been trained.  This is a joint effort with the U.S.
 
There is a multi-year project involving health, water, and electric system installations in collaboration with Germany.
Additional projects are in the pipeline where local Club members are being trained on the preparation of a Global Grant request.  Every individual member, based on unique skill sets, has something to contribute.
 
An example of local needs being addressed and having a significant impact was the Bridges to Prosperity program:
 
Over 10 years six-foot bridges were built allowing remote, local villagers to travel in the rainy season and
attend to daily needs, commerce, healthcare, and children’s education
 
70K children alone were positively impacted.
 
COVID is having a heavy impact across Africa, although there are strict travel restrictions between countries.  Trade and services have been dramatically reduced and essential medicines are not always available.  Masking, hand sanitization, and free testing are requirements.
 
The area is heavily dependent upon hospitality and tourism which is non-existent currently, significantly reducing GDP.  There is generally no governmental support for small businesses.  Wildlife management and protection are a concern.  There is also concern for the residual impacts on mental health.