Who We Are
New Beginnings is a place of healing and hope for expectant girls and young mothers who need support.
The organization offers non-medical support to young mothers between 10-25 years old from the peri-urban areas of Lilongwe. Often the challenge for the average young mother is that she herself was raised by a young single parent or is an orphan that had minimally to non-present family members or relatives raising her. This means she is not a product of a loving healthy home and hasn’t had proper direction to develop a healthy set of skills for good judgement or good decisions.
She has been left vulnerable and susceptible to different forms of abuse and coercion, resulting to sexual abuse or bad decisions that leave her pregnant. At this point, the girl is usually ejected from her home leaving her destitute and shunned by the guardians and the community. She is labeled as wayward with loose morals and a shame. In some cases, she is forced into an early marriage which usually ends up being acrimonious and abusive. Most likely than not, the perpetrator responsible for the pregnancy denies responsibility.
To return and assimilate young mothers into the society with the capacity to thrive.
How We Help
New Beginnings offers non-medical support to expectant girls and young mothers and we do it in two main ways: Re-integration into education and psycho-social support.
1. Reintegration into Education
New Beginnings places young mothers who dropped out of school back into secondary schools where they continue with their formal education. We pay for their school fees, school uniforms and help them with transportation to and fro school. Supplementary study support is also given to them through part-time classes at the New Beginnings operations space. They work with our volunteers and cover subjects such as English, Mathematics and Sciences. These part-time classes happen twice a week at the New Beginnings operations space.
VOCATIONAL TRAINING &
For those young mothers that have never been or can’t go back to formal school, New Beginnings helps them get trained in a skill set they can use to get employment or start their own small businesses. Because most of them can’t read or write, we also offer Adult Literacy classes at our operations space with help from our volunteers.
2. Psycho-Social Support
ONE-ON-ONE & GROUP COUNSELLING
Because of the trauma and pain that these young mothers have gone through, the organisation believes in offering them counselling sessions where they address that pain, heal from it and move past it. Mental health is important to the founder because as an individual who suffers from depression and anxiety, she knows the impact it can have on one’s life. The group sessions allows the young mothers to know others have been through what they went through and they are not isolated in their pain. The one-on-one sessions are so that they can face their pain and deal with it in private in case they are unable to do so in the company of their friends. The organisation has a few trained counsellors helping with this program.
LIFE SKILLS PROGRAM
In this program, the young mothers talk about different issues such as gender based violence awareness, sexual reproductive health, and having healthy relationships with the opposite sex-just to mention a few. This is to help them become individuals that will make better life choices for themselves and their children. Once in a while, we bring in other people from different sectors with knowledge on these subjects to interact with and teach our girls so that their learning experience is enhanced. The young mothers also have access to part-time job opportunities as well as learning entrepreneurship skills.
What Makes New Beginnings Unique
Breaking the circle of uneducated and unaccomplished young mothers raising uneducated and unaccomplished young mothers.
Young mothers in Malawi do have access to medical support through antenatal services, but that’s all there is in place to help them. New Beginnings is the only organization in Malawi with a holistic approach to the challenges young mothers face. We help the young mother with her emotional, psychological and physical wellbeing. We are here to remind her that she has the right to be loved and cared for, the right to be ambitious, the right and the capacity to pursue and succeed at accomplishing her dreams.
We are giving her a second chance to take a different path from the one she has been made to believe is the only option for her, and educating her so that she can provide for herself and her children. In the end, these young mothers will raise their children in a healthy loving home, support and encourage them to get an education and direct them well to make better life choices. We are breaking the circle of uneducated and unaccomplished young mothers raising uneducated and unaccomplished young mothers.
How To Support Us
PURCHASE A T-SHIRT OR HAT
Each t-shirt is 9 thousand kwacha and the hat is 6 thousand kwacha if you are in Malawi.
BUY OUR FARM PRODUCTS
We grow assorted vegetables such as broccoli, lettuce, carrots, sweet peppers, legumes and sweet potatoes – just to mention a few! Not only is it healthy for you to buy from us, you will also be helping us run the organisation.
ADOPT A GIRL
You can commit to supporting a particular girl through whatever program they are in, whether that’s formal education or vocational training. Your gift will pay for their school fees, resources needed in the program as well as transportation for them to get to school each day.
You can also commit to giving a certain amount of money every month for a year and it shall be placed where the need is. You can commit to give 5,000/10,000/20,000 MWK every month.
We will be very glad to receive donations in kind – toys, clothes, furniture, food – which can either be directly used by our beneficiaries or sold to source funds to run our programs.
Founder and Executive Director of New Beginnings
Charity founded New Beginnings in March of 2017, and is operating in Kauma and Kudoko Village in the city of Lilongwe. Her organization supports expectant girls and young mothers through various ways. Charity was a student at a certain university in the city, but dropped out in her third year due to financial problems. A few months after this, Charity got pregnant out of wedlock at the age of 22. She became homeless and had to live off of her friends, and one night when she didn’t have anywhere to go, she slept outside a grocery shop. The father of her child was physically and emotionally abusive towards her, but she lived with him for a while because she didn’t have anyone else to look to. But after an incident where he beat her up with the baby on her back, Charity decided she and her child deserved better and she left him.
She got a few part time jobs before she got a full time job with a recognizable charity organization that works with refugees in Lilongwe. Since after her daughter was born in 2014, Charity had been trying to go back to school to finish her but the university said they would allow her back if she had a legal relationship with the father of her child (which meant she either had to be engaged or married to him).Charity stayed out of school until lawyers from the human rights commission helped her get back to school. She graduated June of 2017 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications. Because of the struggle she went through as a young mom, she knew something had to be done for others in a similar situation that have nobody to help them.
She feels blessed that she was helped by her church as well as friends and some family members to get back up after all the pain she had gone through, and she wants her organization to do the same for girls in the peri-urban areas. Her organization, above all else, wants to give hope and healing to these moms. She wants to remind them the past doesn’t determine our futures, that we must strive for greatness even after we have stumbled and fallen. She wants these girls not listen to the negative names the society hauls at them, but rather to believe they are just as worthy and important as anyone else. Charity is a strong believer in second chances, and she hopes her organization will bring change to the lives of girls like her.