Fashion designer Joelle Allen Visits Kalebuka

Joelle Allen, a long-time supporter of Malaika and designer, came in June to see the various projects that the foundation carries out in the community of Kalebuka. She was amazed by the maturity and confidence of the students and shared with them her life and career journey. We hope to see her soon to run a workshop with our students who aspire to enter the world of fashion design. Thank you for visiting the campus and supporting our mothers’ Mama Ya Mapendo handbag project, Ms. Allen – until next time!

“I am thankful for the opportunity that I recently had to visit Malaika, more than ten years after supporting the school. I still remember the six students Noella asked us to support, and now, seeing more than 300 girls now studying in such wonderful conditions in such a well-equipped school, it truly encourages me to do even more.  I was thankful for the beautiful songs the girls sang for me as well as the time I spent telling them about my story and how they can achieve anything that they want. What an experience to share with such an outstanding group of girls.”

-Joelle Allen

Noella, her two children, and her husband James visited the Democratic Republic of Congo this past July, along with Noella’s sister-in-law, Beth. It was amazing having them at Malaika for six weeks, where they worked everyday with the community. Noella’s children, who spent the full six weeks in the Congo with her, were able to spend precious time in the village, playing with other children and feeling at home. During this time, Noella and the Malaika team met with the Kalebuka community, parents, Ministers, local donors and students. Noella also held several management meetings, followed up on the current school construction, and assessed the day-to-day operations of the school and center with the local staff. A large thank you to Beth for all of the school supplies she and her friends gifted us!

While there, James ran leadership programs for the entire management staff and Beth worked with teachers to reshape and improve this year’s curriculum. Other projects included business and craft workshops for mothers. As a result of these workshops, the mothers learned how to make soap for the school and community.

“I was amazed at how the school had grown since my last trip in every aspect: the size of the school, the girls’ personal development, the amazing atmosphere and their hunger to make the most of the gift Malaika has given them all. This make me immensely proud! …Everybody was so warm and happy to greet me, full of smiles and wide eyes wanting to take the opportunities they have been given. All of this gave me tears of joy and made me realise that all the hard work over the last 10+ years is making a massive difference and I thank everybody that has been involved in the past, present and in the future.” – James Masters