A Birthday Success

Noella’s virtual birthday party Dec. 5 was a huge success- and a great time! Our performers – Kaori Fujii, Inna Modja and of course Malaika students – were amazing and entertaining. It was amazing to hear directly from several of our Community Center participants on how they’ve been impacted and empowered through seeking out Malaika. And so many special guests popped in to say hello!

Noella and Dora Muanda, a STEM expert who has spent a lot of time at Malaika were able to speak on the importance of technology in our programming and also what to expect moving forward. All in all, it was a beautiful event to celebrate Noella’s birthday through celebrating all of the individual, life-changing facets that make up Malaika. We were blown away at how successful our fundraiser was!

With nearly $70,000 raised so far, we will be able to grow programming at our Community Center and provide more women, men and youth the tools they need to empower themselves.

You can still donate to this important campaign for several more weeks here. Give today!

We’re so pleased to have Sébastien Samudinda Ngwej, a teacher of biology, physics, chemistry, botany and zoology, join our team. He comes to Malaika with 11 years of teaching experience and looks forward to sharing his skills and passion with our students.

“For me it is important to implement my skills so that the girls of the Malaika school become useful in the world of the future, and to bring more to what already exists, because rigor, loyalty and hard work are the key to my professional behavior,” Sébastien says. Welcome to our staff!

We love any opportunity to spread the word about Malaika’s work in Kalebuka, especially when we’re sharing with the local community! Four of our students-Audience, Marceline, Louise & Jonathan- were invited recently to represent Malaika at the official opening of Bodeguida restaurant.

They presented information about the impact of our school and community center. They were also able to raise money for our work through selling artwork created by our teachers and also Mama ya Mapendo items.

It’s so important to our community’s success for local people to be invested and involved in our programs in Kalebuka.

Thank you to the team at Bodeguida for your important support! We can’t wait to sit down for a meal at your new spot.

The year 2020 was a uniquely difficult one for many people due to the myriad effects of Covid-19, and for us at Malaika, it took four loved ones. During the lockdown, our community center lost three girls who were beautiful inside and out- Leya Kapemba, Noella Kasongo and Esther Annie-before also losing their sports teacher Paul Kyungu, shortly thereafter.

In their memory, which we honor here, we have planted trees on Malaika’s campus so as not to forget them while grow something beautiful that will last for many years to come.

Despite difficult circumstances around the globe, our Mama ya Mapendo cooperative is doing wonderfully! Through this popular community center program, local mothers have the opportunity to increase their sewing expertise and respond better to the demands of their customers.

This income-generating activity gives them independence, so they are able to meet their needs on their own-an accomplishment women seek when enrolling in Malaika’s programming. And to make this project even more holistic, profits are reinvested into our initiatives.

Items ranging from masks to beautiful beautiful bags are always available in a fashionable variety and are sold at local Hyper Psaro market as well as at Malaika’s school and community center.

A warm welcome to Charlaine Mamba Faila, who joined the Malaika team at the end of 2020 as an IT teacher! Charlaine comes with a passion for growing the role of local females into her field.

“It is a pleasure to participate in the making of modern girls on a scientific level,” she says, “having a similar or downright higher intellectual level to that of other girls their age in the world, regardless of their background.”

Charlaine, the only girl in what she describes as a wonderful family of 6 children, brings a strong background in and love for mathematics and science to the staff, including a bachelor’s degree in computer science / information systems engineering from the Protestant University of Lubumbashi. She is motivated to pass along the knowledge she has acquired throughout her academic career and also to learn and add more to own understanding.

“I intend to work there as long as possible in order to provide Congolese girls in the region with quality training and the desire to do more than me in the future despite their femininity,” she says. We’re glad to have her for the long run!

It’s always so beneficial to have new teachers join our staff, especially those who have recently been in school themselves and can contribute the latest pedagogical methods.

Judith Kilonda Ntensya is our newest math teacher; she will teach grades 7 and 8. She comes on board with a license in applied mathematics, and says she hopes to share her knowledge acquired throughout her studies and life and instill in the students the value of a woman in society.

“I’m happy to be a part of Malaika, as we aim first at the education of our children,” Judith says, and we’re so happy to have her!