Nine-year-old blogger Martha Payne has arrived in Malawi where she is making new friends with children receiving Mary’s Meals.
Martha, who has travelled to Malawi with her family to see the work of her favourite charity, is already proving a hit with local children who depend on the daily school meal they receive from Mary’s Meals.
Her NeverSeconds blog has so far raised over £115,000 for Mary’s Meals which will go a long way to helping thousands of the world’s hungriest kids receive a daily meal.
Martha will see the kitchen shelter which has been built at Lirangwe School with some of the money raised, and where she will also meet children who will receive a daily meal from Mary’s Meals for a whole school year thanks to support from the blog.
During her visit to Malawi, Martha visited the home of 10-year-old Ben, a who lives in a tiny mud hut with his family.
Through the assistance of a translator from Mary’s Meals, Martha and Ben shared stories of what life was like in Malawi and Scotland, and they looked through pictures Martha had taken on the trip to illustrate her life back home.
Martha also helped Ben with one of his daily chores by carrying buckets of water from a nearby borehole to his home. Watching Ben balance a heavy metal bucket of water on his head as he walked back home, Martha decided to help by placing a smaller bucket of water on her head and walking for a short distance.
Since Ben’s father died, his mother struggles to find food to feed him and the rest of the family. They often go to bed hungry and always go without breakfast.
However since Ben has started receiving Mary’s Meals, he has been getting top marks in his studies. His mother tells us he looks healthier and has more energy.
Ben, who has not worn shoes or new clothes for over two years, he says: “Since I have got Mary’s Meals, I no longer concentrate on my problems as I am able to enjoy my studies in class. My vision is to build a better house for my family and look after my mother. I have no reason to rush home after school to try and find food, as my stomach is already filled.”
Commenting on the tremendous achievement which her blog has achieved, Martha said: ‘I never dreamt we’d achieve so much. I can’t stop thinking about all the children we’re helping. Just 6 pence for Mary’s Meals gives another hungry child a meal.”
In Malawi, at Mary’s Meals’ largest project, over half a million children receive a daily nutritious porridge-like dish every school day to attract them to the classroom, where they can gain a basic education.
During her visit to Malawi, Martha plans to put the finishing touches on the sign for the school kitchen that is being built by Mary’s Meals.